Tag Archives: Cerinthe

In a vase on Monday – Happy New Year!

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Some of you may remember that after the rainbow  ‘Drive in’ flowers at the golf club, I was invited to repeat the commission for the New Year’s Eve dinner dance.  It was always going to be a tough act to follow, and I didn’t make it easy for myself.  Not only did I have a relatively last minute change of plan, but then also found myself unexpectedly driving round the island most of the morning chasing a ferry for my daughter and a strapless undergarment for me.  Both crucial, obviously, but it definitely cut into the relaxed pottering/cutting/conditioning/arranging day I’d hoped for!

The plan was one large arrangement plus 24 table arrangements (for twelve tables of ten).  I had been advised of a ‘silver’ theme and so had initially thought to incorporate sprayed silver seed heads in all the arrangements, but I found it ridiculously hard to get hold of silver spray (for some reason various online suppliers wouldn’t deliver to the Isle of Wight, and lots of shops I tried didn’t stock it).  The one tin I had purchased was largely used up spraying the seed heads used in the arrangement I did for my sister (and two smaller ones I didn’t show) but there were a few left over and so I used those in the large arrangement.

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As well as the seed heads, I added some wired silver baubles to the green base of Euphorbia characias ‘Wulfenii’, Garrya elliptica and some sage.   I think the silver made the Garrya look a little ‘grubby’, but I still love those tassles!IMG_9775c

Having run out of silver seed heads for the table decorations I had to improvise and part of that involved purloining Mimosa from our neighbour’s tree (thanks M & J!) as well as adding little clocks, as they seemed more appropriate for New Year than more Christmas baubles.

As with the October flowers, I found the blooms I had available didn’t really work together, but this time I ended up with just three colour schemes.  Firstly, yellow, with the beautiful, fluffy Mimosa coupled with yet more Euphorbia,IMG_9767

secondly white, with Leucojum, the last of the Ammi and some CerintheIMG_9771

and lastly pink, largely my lovely, incredibly long flowering Leptospermum, but also, at the last minute, I added a ‘drape’ of a few bells of Rhodochiton atrosanguineus.IMG_9770

And there they all are.

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Only a potholed drive to the golf club and a couple of fraught journeys from car to tables before I was able to relax with a glass of fizz, safe in the knowledge that the flowers (and the bosom!) were in the right place.

With thanks as ever to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting this lovely meme.

In a vase on Monday – When two worlds collide

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If Cathy, at Rambling in the Garden, who hosts ‘In a vase on Monday’, wasn’t already using the epithet ‘The Golfer’ for her husband, I would definitely have used it for mine.  He joined the local ‘Shanklin and Sandown’ golf club shortly after we moved to the island and this Saturday became their captain.

A week earlier he had (casually) asked if I could produce some flowers for his ‘Captain’s Drive in’ event on Sunday, when he hosted as captain for the first time, and ran a charity competition, to be followed by cream teas at the clubhouse.  Whilst my initial reaction was ‘no’, I looked around the garden and realised there were still hundreds of blooms. What I couldn’t quite picture was how they would work together, and then I realised, they didn’t have to.

There were to be ten tables of ten, so I splashed out on some cute spherical jam jars from Nutleys and set about making two matching arrangements for each table, twenty in all.

It all seemed like quite a good idea, until many hours later on Saturday….

So here they are, Cosmos Purity and Ammi,IMG_9337

Rosa Snow Goose and Zinnia Giant LimeIMG_9338

Helianthus Italian White and hebeIMG_9325

Rosa Jubilee Celebration, Cerinthe and Antirrhinum Orange wonderIMG_9329

Rosa Pink Flower Carpet, Antirrhinum and HoneysuckleIMG_9330

Dahlia Happy Single Date, Scabious Fata Morgana and mintIMG_9341

Zinnia Raspberry Cordial, seedheads of Iris unguicularis and Photinia leavesIMG_9327

Zinnia Giant Wine and Antirrhinum Liberty CrimsonIMG_9332

Cosmos Double Click Cranberries and Dahlia Downham Royal.IMG_9334

and lastly Salvia Horminum ‘Oxford Blue’, Aster frikartii ‘Monch’ and LinumIMG_9335

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And of course what happened?  They’ve already signed me up for New Year’s Eve.

Oh Captain, my Captain, what have you started?IMG_9349

End of month view – June 2015

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I’m joining Helen at the Patient Gardener to share my June End of Month view.

As some of you know, I opened my garden on Sunday for the local hospice as part of a group opening, and I have to say when I got back from work on Thursday I was devastated to see how exhausted everything looked.  Despite some watering and tidying there were definitely areas that were past their best, but the show must go on and I actually got lots of lovely comments (and over 150 visitors!)IMG_7889

All the photos, apart from the one above, were taken in Monday’s bright sunshine, and I’ve struggled a bit with the light levels.  The one above however, was taken during the opening, and you can see it was a lot greyer.  Luckily (for the visitors, not for the garden!) we missed all the rain bar a few drops.IMG_7907

The Swing Beds were definitely struggling, and even the roses which had looked so lovely the weekend before, were going off a little.  There are Dahlias and Cosmos and Dianthus carthusianorum (grown from seed) amongst other things still to come here, so I hope I can keep it going.

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The Grass Bed has a very limited palette of plants, just the grasses (Stipa tenuissima), looking lovely at this time of year, the self seeded Cerinthe, Allium ‘Hair’ (which has been very badly ‘rusted’ this year), the Verbascum chaixxi Album I grew from seed and the Catananche caerulea, which are new and I just love.  However, around all this is much bare soil, following the disposal of all the dead forget me nots, but I’m not sure what else to add.  I still have various seedlings kicking around, so perhaps I’ll pop some of them in.  IMG_7903

Above is the new Mid Century Bed which is really starting to fill out.  The Ranunculus are still going strong and have now been joined by the first of my new roses to flower, Rosa Munstead Wood, just gorgeous.  I’ve also planted some annuals here including Centaurea cyanus Black Boy, Daucus carota Black Knight, Molucella and Malope.  The Centaurea are just starting to flower, but hopefully the rest will have appeared by next month’s EOMV.

In the other new bed, the Bronze Bed, some combinations have worked, including this one of Calendula Sunset Buff, Achillea Terracotta and Nasturtium Caribbean Crush.IMG_7892

But in common with the Swing Beds, the overall look is a bit exhausted.  However, this picture does show clearly why I wanted the new bed as you can see just how shaded the Oak bed is, in comparison, across the lawn.IMG_7893

In the veg beds, the beans and peas are all rushing up their poles, we’re having the best Raspberry crop ever IMG_7913

and the Diving Lady has again got somewhere to swim

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The raised cutting beds are still looking rather empty apart from plants that overwintered.IMG_7917

But the barrow, which has been a bit of a mess for quite a while, had a good tidy up in honour of the opening, and is looking rather pretty again.IMG_7915

The barrow sits to the right of the greenhouse and this year I’ve added some more orangey plants here too.  Firstly the Antirrhinum Orange Wonder, which I’d originally grown for the Bronze Bed but decided there was more room here

IMG_7919and also the Lathyrus Belinensis, grown in pots either side of the greenhouse door.  These have been really slow to get going but are now starting to look more settled.  They don’t grow as tall as ‘normal’ sweet peas, and nor do they have the same fragrance, but I love their bicoloured flowers and how they work with both the brick and the pot.  I just need them to fill out!

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And to finish, the one bed looking untouched by the recent heat – the Shady Bed looking cool and calm.  IMG_7920

With thanks to Helen for hosting this meme.

End of month view – March 2015

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All of a sudden, spring has sprung.

This morning (Monday) was beautifully sunny and everything was looking so perky and fresh. Above are a few spare wedding flowers which never made the cut for this weekend’s trip to the bright lights, but they seem happy to have stayed at home.

There’s a lot of other interest at this time of year from pots and containers.  The bath by the front steps has finally filled out, and there are still tulips to come. IMG_6444

 

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and in the trough Narcissi Minnow have just started flowering.IMG_6456

The two Swing Beds have daffodils (Narcissus Jenny) and Forget me nots already flowering, but so much else on the verge.IMG_6459

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The Grass Bed has temporarily (?) lost its willow alliums after wind damage over the weekend, but is looking good with just the Stipa tenuissima and the Forget me nots.  They do seem a deeper blue this year – do they fade over time?IMG_6455

The two lavender beds are starting to fill out too, but both still need a proper tidy up.IMG_6449

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The Oak Bed is probably at its best this month, with hellebores, bergenias and more Jenny daffodils.IMG_6445

And here’s another shot of the reprieved Phormium near the front door.IMG_6441

But the real excitement, is the beginning of the two new beds.

We’ve already admired Hamamelis Aphrodite in the Bronze Bed, but she is now definitely past her best.  However, she’s been joined by a few things – some bought in Tulip Prinses Irene, some Calendula ‘Sunset Buff‘ grown from seed and Libertia peregrinans, a gift from my friend Louise at the Old Rectory garden.

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There’s still plenty more to come, largely grown from seed, to try to keep the cost down, but I did confess to splashing out on some new roses here.

The Mid Century Bed has been named after the structure the OH bought for my 50th last year after I’d admired something similar in a magazine and he went and got it made by the local blacksmith!  It’s been waiting well over six months for its final home, and here it is.

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As well as my lovely obelisk (not strictly but not sure what else to call it) the bed now contains lots of transplanted Cerinthe, some bought Digitalis Mertonensis (I grew some from seed but as they’re still only about an inch or so across I can’t see them flowering this year) and some bulbs.

But as you can see, there’s still plenty of space, which couldn’t be more exciting 😀

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With thanks as ever to Helen at The Patient Gardener for hosting our End of Month Views.