Tag Archives: Bachelor’s Buttons

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Cuttings

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Cuttings

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Cuttings

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share an arrangement of materials gathered from our gardens. Dahlias and zinnias, usually my go-to summer flowers, are lagging behind my expectations. For today I trimmed a little bit of this and some of that to put together what turned out to be a happy, colorful summer vase.

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Cuttings

Recently my sister surprised me with two lovely and well-chosen floral books. I am looking forward to exploring From Seed To Bloom by Milli Proust and have already delved into Floret Farm’s A Year In Flowers by Erin Benzakein. I have enjoyed Erin’s luscious designs for years and have taken several of her free mini-courses. In creating today’s vase I was inspired by her book to experiment with looser foliage and a variety of textures.

Dahlia ‘Gallery Pablo’ and Zinnia

Dahlia Ball ‘Petra’s Wedding’

Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm)

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Cuttings

Dahlia ‘Gallery Art Deco’

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Cuttings

Materials
Flowers
Angelonia ’Serena Purple’ and ’Serena Blue’
Dahlia ‘Gallery Art Deco’
Dahlia ‘Gallery Pablo’
Dahlia Decorative ‘Noordwijks Glorie’
Dahlia Ball ‘Petra’s Wedding’
Iris domestica (Blackberry Lily)
Liriope muscari
Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm)
Salvia nemorosa ‘Blue Hill’
Tagetes ‘Durango Red’ (Durango Red French Marigold)
Zinnia -Cactus Flowered Mix
Foliage
Angelonia ’Serena Blue’
Cleome hassleriana (Spider Flower) Seed heads
Salvia nemorosa ‘Blue Hill’
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Container
Textured, incised ceramic pedestal vase, rice or bone color. 5×6-inches. Red wooden platter.

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Cuttings

Have a great week in the garden. Thanks to our host Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for encouraging us to create and share our vases. Visit her to discover what is blooming in her UK garden and across the globe this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Resilience

In A Vase On Monday – Resilience

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of materials gathered from our gardens. Summer in North Carolina is always hot and humid but this past week felt like summer was being served deep fried. Dahlias buds are drying up or developing malformed flowers, but zinnias are just getting started and enjoy the heat.

Oppressive humidity, temperatures above 100 and heat index warnings several days amplified the severe drought conditions. For weeks while some areas nearby were getting severe storms with plenty of precipitation, we had none. Then Friday night, at last, a strong steady rain poured out from the clouds.  Although I have hand watered frequently the results of my efforts cannot compare to the refreshment this rainfall brought. Early Saturday morning I relished in the garden’s rehydrated state. Nice rain fell again on Saturday evening and all through the day on Sunday, a soft watering.  Ahh!

Today’s flowers were prepared Friday prior to the nourishing rainfall, thus the title Resilience to emphasize respect for those garden stalwarts that carry on under dire hot, dry conditions. I’m curious what you count on to carry the garden through tough times.

In A Vase On Monday – Resilience

In A Vase On Monday – Resilience: Clusters of tiny yellow Tansy flowers and fernlike foliage with cactus zinnia

In A Vase On Monday – Resilience

In A Vase On Monday – Resilience

Materials
Flowers
Buddleja davidii ‘Adokeep’ (Adonis blue Butterfly Bush)
Dahlia ‘Totally Tangerine’
Gladiolus ‘Purple Flora ‘
Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)
Rudbeckia laciniata (Green-Headed Coneflower)
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Zinnia -Cactus Flowered Mix
Foliage
Tanacetum vulgare (Tansy)
Container
Dark blue matte ceramic jar

Thanks to our host Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for encouraging us to create and share our vases. Visit her to discover what is blooming in her UK garden and across the globe this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Swords

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Swords

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of materials gathered from our gardens. Many gladiolas, known to some as sword lilies, opened throughout the week, allowing me to keep vases of them scattered throughout the house.

The ones I grow are mostly rich jewel tones. The stems are quite tall and heavy, a little awkward to balance. I chose a heavy, substantial Ikebana vase in which to display a few of them today.

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Swords

Crinum lilies are just beginning to form bulbils  on the flower heads now that the flowers are finished. I realized after cutting them they will be more interesting when allowed to develop further, but I included a couple at this stage anyway for textural contrast.

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Swords

Materials
Flowers
Gladiolus ‘Espresso’
Gladiolus no-names white and bright red
Gladiolus ‘Purple Flora ‘
Foliage
Crinum × powellii (Crinum lily) head
Container
Black metal suiban. 4 x 9.5 x 6.5 inches. Japan.

In A Vase On Monday – Summer Swords

Thanks to our host Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for encouraging us to create and share our vases. Visit her to discover what is blooming in her UK garden and across the globe this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Gladiolas In Red Vase

In A Vase On Monday – Gladiolas In Red Vase

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of materials gathered from our gardens.

During summer days a closed-in back porch at my maternal grandmother’s was the hub of activity. The porch separated the kitchen from the main portion of the house. Just inside the back door in other seasons, we would pass by pots of out-of-bloom geraniums and begonias. But in summer those would have been set outside and in their stead would sit a carefully tended vase of gladiolas in mixed colors.

When I was five or six often I stayed overnight with my  grandmother. After breakfast, still early, she would get her flower clippers and we would go outside to see if any more of her glads had opened. The mystery of what colors they would be held such excitement for me.

Gladioli From My Garden With Grandma’s Vintage Flower Clippers – 2015

Grandma always wore an apron and would tuck up a corner just so, to hold whatever she was gathering. On these mornings she would come back indoors with an apron full of glads and proceed to groom the flowers already in the vase, removing the spent blooms from the bottom of the stems, making fresh cuts, adding clean water and finally arranging the newest stems into the vase. The rainbow array never failed to delight my young self and must have made her happy as well.

I still adore gladiolas but have drifted toward white ones and deep, intensely rich colors like G. ‘Espresso’. Its silky petals begin as nearly black and open into a sultry crimson.

Baptisia Foliage, unopened Gladiolus ‘Espresso’

Gladiolus ‘Espresso’

Gladiolus

The bright red glad came without a name but has distinctive inner markers and rich color.

In A Vase On Monday – Gladiolas In Red Vase

Keeping company with the gladiolas, Beebalm has begun flowering after several years of nearly disappearing. The spot of blue at upper left is bachelor button.

Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm)

The mophead hydrangea in today’s vase is a pass-along that came from a reader when I first began this blog. She was a volunteer at the JC Raulston Arboretum in Raleigh, NC and the hydrangea was one her father grew.  My grandmother also had a hydrangea by her back porch step (my cousin still grows it). Hers and everyone’s flowered blue due to the acid soil conditions in our small town.  I would much prefer blue to pink but haven’t in all these year taken time to add aluminum sulfate.

Hydrangea macrophylla

Materials
Flowers
Centaurea cyanus ‘Blue Diadem’ (Bachelor’s Buttons)
Gladiolus ‘Espresso’
Gladiolus no-names white and bright red
Hydrangea macrophylla
Lilium ‘Black Out’ (Asiatic lily)
Monarda didyma (Scarlet Beebalm)
Foliage
Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’
Container
Red/black raku vase, Charles Chrisco, Chrisco’s Pottery—Seagrove Potters

I hope this lily bud will create a focal point when it opens front and center in a few days.

In A Vase On Monday – Gladiolas In Red Vase

In A Vase On Monday – Gladiolas In Red Vase

Thanks to our host Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for encouraging us to create and share our vases. Visit her to discover what is blooming in her UK garden and across the globe this week.

In A Vase On Monday – A Basket Of Pink

In A Vase On Monday – A Basket Of Pink

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of materials gathered from our gardens.

The hydrangeas are more beautiful than in past years, despite some late cold snaps in early spring. I planned a simple vase, but this one went off on its own. Finding a container was a major challenge. After testing out a number of vases I settled on a basket I made some years ago. A few fresh lilies along with recycled ones from last week’s vase.

In A Vase On Monday – A Basket Of Pink

In A Vase On Monday – A Basket Of Pink

In A Vase On Monday – A Basket Of Pink

Materials
Flowers
Centaurea cyanus ‘Blue Diadem’ (Bachelor’s Buttons)
Cleome hassleriana (Spider Flower)
Gaura lindheimeri ‘Passionate Blush’ (Butterfly Gaura)
Hydrangea macrophylla
Lilium ‘Black Out’ (Asiatic lily)
Verbena bonariensis (Tall Verbena)
Foliage
Container
Handmade potato basket.

In A Vase On Monday – A Basket Of Pink

Thanks to our host Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for encouraging us to create and share our vases. Visit her to discover what garden surprises she and others are enjoying this week.

In A Vase On Monday – Vases With Red Lily

In A Vase On Monday – Gardenia With Red Lily

In A Vase On Monday – Red Lilies

Each Monday Cathy at Rambling In The Garden invites us to share a vase of materials gathered from our gardens.  I prepared two vases this week.

Vase 1 – Gardenia With Red Lily

This week’s first vase holds two standouts from the garden. Gardenias are having a stellar year. The shrubs are covered with flowers. This arrangement was made Thursday as I rescued the flowers from the week’s series of extremely hot days.

In A Vase On Monday – Gardenia With Red Lily

Lilium ‘Black Out’  was first planted in 2016 and never fails to thrill. 

In A Vase On Monday – Gardenia With Red Lily

The flowers were pristine and fresh but I found the lilies less impactful and the gardenias more difficult to arrange than expected. Eventually the vase sort of took shape and I lost interest in fiddling any further. Supporting florals are Oakleaf Hydrangea and a (rather too small) Snapdragon.

In A Vase On Monday – Gardenia With Red Lily

The gardenia fragrance, divine at first, became overpowering and I had to move the arrangement outdoors.

In A Vase On Monday – Gardenia With Red Lily

In A Vase On Monday – Gardenia With Red Lily

In A Vase On Monday – Gardenia With Red Lily

In A Vase On Monday – Gardenia With Red Lily

Materials
Flowers
Antirrhinum majus ‘Speedy Sonnet Bronze’ (Snapdragon)
Gardenia jasminoides ‘August Beauty’ (Gardenia)
Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Ruby Slippers’ (Lil’ Ruby dwarf Oakleaf Hydrangea)
Lilium ‘Black Out’ (Asiatic lily)
Foliage
Gardenia jasminoides ‘August Beauty’ (Gardenia)
Container
Textured, incised ceramic pedestal vase, rice or bone color. 5×6-inches.

I’m not usually sensitive but definitely reacted to the flowers. I saved the lilies from the vase and tossed the gardenias.

Vase 2 – Red Lilies

In A Vase On Monday – Red Lilies

By Saturday the majority of L. ‘Black Out’ had opened fully so I gathered them and made a second arrangement using the same vase as the first. There were 15 red lilies but many more would have been nice.

In A Vase On Monday – Red Lilies

It was challenging to find enough material in flower to complete the design. I recycled the fading Royal Sunset lily from last week to help fill in and cut the available stems of Dahlia ‘Totally Tangerine’ and a few sprigs of Angelonia.

In A Vase On Monday – Red Lilies

In A Vase On Monday – Red Lilies

There are not many Bachelor’s Buttons in the garden but I am thrilled to see any. They probably won’t last much longer in this weather so I cut most of them to provide an airy contrast in color and texture.

In A Vase On Monday – Red Lilies

In A Vase On Monday – Red Lilies

Materials
Flowers
Angelonia
Centaurea cyanus ‘Blue Diadem’ (Bachelor’s Buttons)
Dahlia Anemone ‘Totally Tangerine’
Lilium ‘Black Out’ (Asiatic lily)
Lily ‘Royal Sunset’
Foliage
Container
Textured, incised ceramic pedestal vase, rice or bone color. 5×6-inches.

Thanks to our host Cathy at Rambling In The Garden for encouraging us to create and share our vases. Visit her to discover what garden surprises she and others are enjoying this week.

Early July 2014

I have tried to grow Bachelor’s Buttons every few years without success, but this year things improved. A single plant surviving from an entire package of seeds shows yes, one can get results. If I were to water and tend them properly perhaps two next year? The sumptuous blue color is what I find appealing.

Centaurea cyanus ‘Blue Boy’  (Bachelor’s Button, Cornflower)

Centaurea cyanus ‘Blue Boy’ (Bachelor’s Button, Cornflower)

Unlike my experience with seeds, some perennials are terribly assertive and settle in without invitation, crowding out anything in the vicinity. On the left of the back staircase leading to the garden is a large section of Shasta Daisies that spread seemingly overnight from a small container purchased years ago. Some years I am simply delighted with anything that manages to limp along through our dry, hot and humid summers, but this year I find myself thinking these have to go someday.

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

Leucanthemum x superbum (Shasta Daisy)

When the garden was just getting started I ordered a blue tall garden phlox, but a pink one is what was shipped.

Phlox paniculata (Garden Phlox)

Phlox paniculata (Garden Phlox)

In the years before the fence was installed, deer would eat the flowers of this Phlox paniculata just as soon as they opened. It was maddening. Actually the fence is not tall enough to keep deer out if they decide they want a taste, so it still makes me nervous to have these phlox blooming; however, this is another plant that dug in its heels years ago and would not leave even when I tried pulling it all up.

It has made a comeback in several spots and so far the deer are dining elsewhere.  I have planned numerous other garden phlox such as ‘David’ but they are very short-lived, so it is a mystery why this one is so attached to the garden.  I am not positive of its name but think it is ‘Robert Poore’ perhaps, a mildew-resistant and heat tolerant phlox.

Looking toward the northern border - Phlox paniculata (Garden Phlox)

Looking toward the northern border – Phlox paniculata (Garden Phlox)

Behind the phlox is poorly sited butterfly bush that I pruned back hard in late winter. It turns out this is a dwarf so it does not get a chance to make much impact at the back of the border. It has not bloomed well in several years, but has more room this year to reach the sun after a couple of neighboring spartan junipers had to be removed. Its name is Buddleja davidii ‘Adokeep’ (Adonis Blue Butterfly Bush).

Buddleja davidii ‘Adokeep’ (Adonis blue Butterfly Bush)

Buddleja davidii ‘Adokeep’ (Adonis blue Butterfly Bush)

One plant that has done well without taking over is Rudbeckia hirta ‘Irish Eyes.’ It is right on schedule to brighten the southern corner of the house during July with its golden yellow flowers with green centers. Pollinators love this plant.

Rudbeckia hirta 'Irish Eyes'

Rudbeckia hirta ‘Irish Eyes’

This time of year the garden has lost its cohesiveness, but a few things keep determinedly plugging along. The garden very much needs rain.