In Vase on Monday: Happy Birthday to me with Orange & Purple Fall fun-ness

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Chinese Lantern (Physalis alkekengi) with purple (painted) eucalyptus

Chinese Lantern (Physalis alkekengi) with purple (painted) eucalyptus

Well how about that, it is my birthday today!  As a little treat to myself I picked up a few things that I don’t currently grow in my garden (but I do hope to one day!).  I put them together for some fall colour in the house.  I thought I’d add it to my “In a Vase on Monday” collection, so here we go!

A little snippet of a view...

A little snippet of a view…

This past week while running errands I passed a florist shop that just looked so inviting.  It really doesn’t take much for me to want to go into a florist shop,  I even love the smell of them!  The purple painted eucalyptus really caught my eye.  The pictures don’t give it justice, it is beautiful!

 

Hydrangea from my father-in-law's garden along with gypsophila paniculata (baby's breath)

Hydrangea from my father-in-law’s garden along with gypsophila paniculata (baby’s breath)

So, I was standing in the shop with some of the lovely eucalyptus wondering what I was going to do with it!  I thought of a picture I posted the other day of my California poppies with cornflower and that sealed the colour combination I wanted;  Purple and Orange!

 

full view

full view

I came home and had fun putting it together.  I love doing that; fitting everything in its perfect place. Unfortunately,  it was really windy when I made it, so I couldn’t take it outside for pictures.  It is sitting in my front hall with so much natural light I thought for sure I could get a good picture…

I changed position to try and get more light from the window

I changed position to try and get more light from the window

not exactly…  But you more or less get the gist of the arrangement and colours :-)  The hydrangea are from my father-in-law’s garden. He gave them to me about a month ago and this time they dried really well. I liked how the lighter shade looked here.

I love those windows, but they stink for taking pictures!

I love those windows, but they stink for taking pictures!

I was told by another blogger that the Chinese Lantern plant will run wild in the garden, so my intention is to grow it in a pot.  That is on my “eventually will get to”  list. I planted some of the gypsophila paniculata (O.K., I just call this baby’s breath because it is MUCH faster to say!) this spring.  One tiny little sprig came up, but with no flowers.  I’m hoping next year will be better.

Our Stickley corner piece.  A perfect display place.

Our Stickley corner piece. A perfect display place.

The large window looks out to part of our front yard.  There is beautiful brightness in the afternoon.  I love the arrangement sitting right there.  And now the front hall smells like lovely eucalyptus!

I’m looking forward to seeing what Cathy at Rambling in the Garden has put together for her meme “In a Vase on Monday”.  You can visit her at: http://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com and see other lovely arrangements too.

Have a good week!
Dana

 

In a Vase on Monday: A playful gathering of flowers

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Gathering flowers on a sunny day

At least once a week I now look forward to collecting flowers from the garden and bringing them inside for us to enjoy in our kitchen.  I rarely did this before, because really I love seeing them outside.  But being a part of the Rambling in the Garden’s meme “In a Vase on Monday” has brought about my new weekly activity (read: obsession)!

Japanese Anemone

Japanese Anemone

My ten year old daughter helped me this time.  It would have been quite a collection of colours if I’d picked all the flowers she wanted!  But she was happy enough, instead, to hold the flowers, in a hand held bouquet as we walked through the yard and cut the flowers which I picked out (with her approval, of course).

Potentilla (yellow flower)

Potentilla (yellow flower)

I wish I could say that I had it all planned out in my head beforehand. That was not the case, though. It all started with a large sedum flower with a broken stem.  It would be such a shame to leave that in the garden to die.  So pink became the main colour.

Potentilla with Japanese Anemone (some without their petals)

Potentilla with Japanese Anemone (some without their petals)

My potentilla plant has the sweetest yellow flowers.  I had to have that colour in the arrangement!  I also loved the strange shapes of the Japanese Anemone.  They are so interesting looking before they even bloom as well as well after they bloom!

Mallow in front

Mallow in front with some lady’s mantle to the right (underneath the Sedum)

My mallow plant grew quite tall this summer and was blown over and badly broken. I thought that was the end of it, at least for this season.  But we cut it down to a lower level and sure enough, it is full of all new flowers!  I have not been able to really capture the beautiful colour that it is.  The light, bright green of the lady’s mantle is one of my favourite colours! It is popping up in all sorts of places around the yard!  So I was happy to find some that was still young enough to use.

"wild white plant" in the garden

“wild white plant” in the garden

These lovely white flowers are in my “wild flower garden”.  I don’t know their name, but I’d really like to find out because they are so pretty.

Everything arranged and sitting pretty

Everything arranged and sitting pretty

It all came together fairly quickly and easily. You don’t usually have too much time when a child is involved, anyway! The original vase I was using just wasn’t working for me.  I had too many flowers for it.  So out came this rather large, glass ice container (or white wine cooler/champagne cooler).  I have the marbles on the bottom, as a lot of my stems were too short.

In a Vase on Monday: A Playful gathering of flowers

In a Vase on Monday: A Playful gathering of flowers

I really like starting my week like this!  I hope you do, too.  Stop on over to Rambling in the Garden if you’d like to see some other lovely “In a Vase on Monday” posts! http://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com

Have a good week!
Dana

Wordless Wednesday: A Red Admiral & a Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly on Helenium Waltraut

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a Red Admiral & Small tortoiseshell butterfly on a helenium Waltraut

a Red Admiral & Small tortoiseshell butterfly on a helenium Waltraut

Hello!  Welcome to wordless Wednesday!  I just had to share my picture of two varieties of butterflies on my one helenium flower.  Earlier this season I was complaining for lack of butterflies, not so much now!

Thank you for visiting!
Dana

 

In a Vase on Monday: A splash of orange to brighten your day!

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California poppies (and hidden cornflowers)

California poppies (and hidden cornflowers)

Oh wow do I love those colors!  I’m usually quite a pink kinda girl, but these California poppies are the most friendly and happy shade of orange ever!

cornflowers just peeking through

cornflowers just peeking through

I have one flower bed that is a bit of a wild garden (that might be an understatement).

on the wild side...

on the wild side…

This wouldn’t be something that I would typically like.  I try to keep things neat and tidy, pretending that I have some control.  But the wild flower seeds were planted last year when I wasn’t sure what to plant and thought I’d just try it for a season.  Ha! Wild flowers re-seed themselves :-)

California poppies and cornflowers in the wild garden

California poppies and cornflowers in the wild garden (poppies closed up in the evening)

So up everything came again this year.  I’m really not sure what is going to happen to this garden next year, as I’ve planted some things that might not go so well with the wild ones…

A yellow Potentilla with the poppies and cornflowers in the background

A yellow Potentilla with the poppies and cornflowers in the background

I’ve enjoyed the two colors of orange and blue together all summer.  Don’t they look pretty behind my potentilla?

Simply two colors together

A simple combination

So together they went into the vase.

Love.

Oh, and the vase?  Did you maybe guess?  It is from my mother.  She just finds the quirkiest things sometimes.  This is the first time I’ve used it.  Perfect fit.

In a Vase on Monday

In a Vase on Monday

In the evening the poppies close up (even when cut)

In the evening the poppies close up (even after being cut)

I thought it was interesting to learn that the poppy flowers would close up at night even after they were cut.  They sure give a different look to the arrangement!

Enjoying the flowers inside!

Enjoying the flowers inside

I am so enjoying putting together a vase of flowers for Cathy’s meme “In a Vase on Monday”.  You can enjoy other lovely arrangements through Cathy’s blog: http://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com/  If you are a blogger and would like to join in on the fun, just mention Cathy’s blog in your post and you can then put a link to your blog on her page.  It is a fun way to meet other bloggers, too.

cornflower up close

cornflower up close

Have a good week!

Dana

 

Wordless Wednesday: Evening Sunlight’s Magic

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marigolds

Marigolds

I think I’m getting the hang of this Wordless Wednesday thing.  Here are just a few pictures which I think have a magical look to them simply because of the evening sunlight.

Marigolds

Marigolds

The flowers are not spectacular, really, but I think they look spectacular in this light.

Japanese Anemone

Japanese Anemone

Silver Anniversary Hybrid Tea Rose

Silver Anniversary Hybrid Tea Rose

And then my favorite … I captured a picture of a Speckled Wood Butterfly on my Rudbeckia (Black-eyed Susan).  This was the picture that inspired me to post on my blog tonight.

Speckled Wood Butterfly

Speckled Wood Butterfly

Happy Wordless Wednesday!

Dana

In a Vase on Monday: Lavender in September for a scented treat

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Snapdragon, Lavender, Erysimum bowles, Autumn Joy

Snapdragon, Lavender, Erysimum bowles (mauve), Autumn Joy

Lavender?!  In September?  I have a lot of lavender, and because I love it, I added more new plants last year.  Those new guys were the first that I harvested in July. I like to make lavender sachets, wands, bouquets. There are quite a few things you can do with lavender!  It seems that the plants  had lots of immature stems, which have continued to grow throughout the summer and were just ripe for the cutting for my arrangement!

Lavender in September!

Lavender in September!

Purples, white, and a bit of pink

Purples, white, and a bit of pink

It was such a treat working with the lavender.  I. Love. Lavender. :-)

Autumn Joy sedum

Autumn Joy sedum

I have one Autumn Joy plant at my front gates, which I wouldn’t normally like cutting from. But this one stem was broken and on the ground. I couldn’t just leave it there!

 

Autum Joy sedum, tortoise butterfly and bees

Autum Joy sedum, tortoise butterflies and bees

In a Vase on Monday: White & Purples & a wee bit of pink

In a Vase on Monday: White & Purples & a wee bit of pink

The snapdragons were planted from seed for me by my father-in-law.  He can grow anything from seed or cutting, unlike me!  I have some mixed colors and just picked out the white ones.

Snapdragon

Snapdragon

Pottery Vase from when we were first married

Pottery Vase from when we were first married

In a Vase on Monday...

In a Vase on Monday…

What fun it is to gather flowers from the garden!  Thank you Cathy from Rambling in the Garden!  You can see other arrangements linked to Cathy’s page at:  http://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com/

Have a good week!

Dana

In a Vase on Monday: The color Red! (Echinacea Salsa Red to be exact)

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In a Vase on Monday: The color Red

In a Vase on Monday: The color Red

Unbelievably, it is Monday again!  Where does the time go?  Ever notice that as we get older time seems to fly even faster??? My kids are now back at school and we are settling in to our old, and some new, routines.  The “feel” of summer is leaving us.  One thing that is not quite ready to leave, at least in my yard, are the flowers.  I won’t say they are going strong, but they are hanging in there!  This is rather helpful as I join http://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com/  for the meme In a Vase on Monday.  I joined for the first time last week and I really like it! This is where bloggers from all around the world join in to create arrangements in vases and we all link together.  What a beautiful way to to start our week!

Echinacea Salsa Red, Globe Artichoke, a

Echinacea Salsa Red, Cynara Cardunculus (Globe Artichoke), and Zantedeschi albomaculata (white spotted Calla lily)

My father-in-law, who is an incredible gardener, recently (as in a week ago!) gave me a new, quite beautiful, plant for my garden.  It is a white spotted Calla lily (Zantedeschia albomaculata).  I’m not exactly sure if this is cheating, but I used those gorgeous flowers in this arrangement.  I can’t wait for the plant to get all settled into its new bed and produce loads of flowers for me next year!

up close...

White Calla Lily up close…

As always, the sun was in and out while I was taking pictures.  The other factor that I have to (always) contend with is the wind; it is a given where we live!  So I might design something lovely and symmetrical inside the house and then by the time I get it outside and set up to photograph, it is completely topsy-turvy! That is my story and I am sticking to it :-)

Salsa Red Echinacea

Salsa Red Echinacea

My echinacea plant (Salsa Red) is one of my favorite purchases from last year.  It is really only now coming in to full bloom and boy is it showing off that bright red color!

Globe artichoke

Globe artichoke (Cynara Cardunculus)

I think the most photographed flower (vegetable?) in the garden is my globe artichoke (Cynara Cardunculus).  I love the purple color and the different texture of the bloom.  It is rather different which I think is what I really like about it.

Red, purple, white and green

The bee wanted a part of the action

Red, purple, white, and green; the colors just felt right to me.  The vase is from my mom, which always makes it special. I’ve used it before, but I have to say that I think this arrangement was simply made for this vase.

same arrangement while the sun is behind a cloud...

same arrangement while the sun is behind a cloud…

I get rather annoyed when the sun goes behind a cloud.  But as mentioned before, with all of that wind, the clouds usually move along.

Fun colors in a fun vase

Fun colors in a fun vase

Isn’t the difference in lighting amazing?

In a Vase on Monday...

In a Vase on Monday…

I hope you’ve enjoyed my arrangement.  You’ll find some wonderful arrangements linked to Rambling in the Garden, and of course Rambling in the Garden’s vase arrangement, too! So feel free to pop on over and check them out.  (here’s the link again: http://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com/ )

Happy Monday! Happy September 1st!  Happy back to School & Work!

Dana

Grow your own/Make your own: A Garlic Wreath with panache!

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Leaning on our garden bench

Leaning on our garden bench

Our organic Vallelado garlic was a huge success this year. We harvested it more than a few weeks ago and I have been airing it as much as possible. Our weather hasn’t been perfect.  The norm for Ireland is to have some sun, some rain, some wind, and back to sun again… every day!  So it was precarious setting out the garlic and making sure it didn’t get rained on, etc.

loads of organic garlic

loads of organic garlic

Today I decided I wanted to hang some of the garlic in the kitchen.  There are quite a few things I need to get organized this week, and for me the garlic was at the top of the list.  (truth be told, I love creating, but I am not really looking forward to the other organizing items on the list…)

What to add to the wreath...

What to add to the wreath…

Hang it in the kitchen… I had one wreath left so I didn’t have any choices to make there.  I also want to be able to use the garlic, so it is attached with raffia and green florist wire, instead of with a glue-gun which might have been a bit easier and faster!

Adding the artichokes

Adding the artichokes

A vase full of artichokes

You might remember this picture from a couple of weeks ago

For those who know me, you know that I am all about reusing and recycling.  I also like to grow things in the garden that I can use in arrangements or/and dry.  The artichokes are still in the drying process, but their purple plume seems to be holding.  They have been in the kitchen for the past couple of weeks (not in water) and have looked really well.  I’ll miss them in the vase, but I like them on the wall, too!

tied garlic

tied garlic

Artichokes up close

Artichokes up close

It all came together fairly quickly, and easily.  This was “play time” for me, so I really had to get it done quickly!

Garlic with dried roses and artichokes from the garden

Garlic with dried roses and artichokes from the garden

I’ve been hanging roses every now and then this summer. I have a clip-on drying rack (schools use them to hang art work to dry, I usually use mine to hang socks to dry). I’ve been clipping the roses upside down and then totally forgetting about them.  The roses are quite fragrant, so the room smells lovely now too.

Artichoke and garlic up close

Artichoke and garlic up close

I’m still not sure what the greens are.  They are not dry. I just cut them this morning. But I used them because I know they will dry easily on the wreath.  The plant seems to be quite happy with me for “pruning” it!  It is now full of purple flowers.

Garlic Wreath with artichokes and roses

Garlic Wreath with artichokes and roses

I tried hanging the wreath where I normally take my wreath pictures.  But it was too big!  So I have it resting on a table.  The lighting inside just doesn’t do it justice.  I like this time of year when the fields are full of bales, especially when it is sunny out!

Harvest time

Harvest time

Harvest time view from my back door

Harvest time view from my back door

Such an easy thing to do, making a garlic wreath.  What will you make today?
Now, to get the rest of my things organized!

Thanks for stopping by :-)
Dana

P.S. If you’d like to read more about growing garlic, please click here: http://mominthegarden.wordpress.com/2014/08/12/organic-garlic-sitting-pretty-in-a-hand-carved-wooden-bowl/

 

In a Vase on Monday: Sweet Pea, Hosta & Perovskia (Russian Sage)

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Without any sun it is quite drab

Without any sun it is somewhat drab

Today is Monday. It is a wet, cold, and miserable day!  What a yucky end to the summer.  The bright aspect of today, though, is the start of my joining in on “In a Vase on Monday”.  Cathy, of Rambling in the Garden, hosts this lovely blogging theme.  Here is my first “go” at joining in.  To see some other lovely vases of flowers, please do visit Cathy’s blog: http://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com/2014/08/11/in-a-vase-on-monday-reddy-or-not/

Add a touch of sun and Voila! magic.

Add a touch of sun and Voila! magic. The vase is from our Irish pottery collection from when we married 18 years ago (Suzanne May).

I know my crazy schedule, so I cut these flowers on Saturday evening.  My sweet pea are white and different shades of pink and purple. They smell amazing in the wide open garden.  The fragrance in the house when I have a vase of sweet pea inside is heavenly!

Perovskia 'Atriplicifolia' (Russian Sage)

Perovskia ‘Atriplicifolia’ (Russian Sage)

I planted Perovskia ‘Atriplicifolia’ (Russian Sage) last year.  I missed it from my previous garden.  I’m so glad to have it again.  It is such a delicate plant.  I’ve added just a few strands to the arrangement to give it a bit of extended form.

The Russian Sage gives it some reach.

The Russian Sage gives it some reach.

I also used some hosta at the base to kind of keep some form to the arrangement. I tried to not have it look like a collar, but I did like the contrast of the sweet pea on the green at the base.

Up close

Up close

The vase of flowers is sitting in front of me this morning as I am writing this post. It is still smelling fragrant and looking well.  I’m glad I took those pictures on Saturday, though, as the weather is horrendous today! Even on Saturday the weather was changeable.  You can see how it was cloudy and sunny while I was taking photos!  The difference in photos is like night and day.

In a Vase: Sweet Pea, Hosta & Perovskia (Russian Sage)

In a Vase: Sweet Pea, Hosta & Perovskia (Russian Sage)

I love flower arranging, so this was pure pleasure in putting together.  The hardest part for me is cutting the flowers in the garden!  I love seeing them in the yard.  Incentive for me to plant enough to have in the yard, and in a  vase!

I hope your Monday is lovely and bright.

Dana

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