In a Vase on Monday: Autumn Loveliness

With it being Michaelmas today, I really ought to have used some of my Michaelmas daisies for my Monday vase.


But they have featured in two vases recently, so time for something different: Euonymus europaeus, otherwise known as Spindle trees (and as “Bishop’s hats” in German!). They seem to have sprouted up everywhere in our little piece of woodland this year, and the berries are currently at their best.


While looking for some nice Euonymus branches, I also noticed that some of the lovely creeping vine people often plant here (Parthenocissus) has found its way into the wild and has started growing up one of the bushes. (Is it called Virginia Creeper in the UK?) As I snipped a bit off I saw the seedheads of some tangled Old man’s beard – Clematis vitalba – too. I don’t cherish this plant if it invades my garden – which it frequently does – but I do love those fluffy seedheads!


All this colour and loveliness went to my head, and I created a Haiku for today too!

Bishop hats hanging

on spindles, spinning silken

old man’s beard; autumn.


This arrangement will not come indoors, but will brighten our patio now that there is more and more shade during the day.


 The cyclamen was a bargain from my local supermarket and I was tempted by its deep red colour. I am pretty good at killing off cyclamens – my record being within 48 hours – so I wonder how long this one will last on the patio!


We had another misty morning, but by midday the sun broke through and warmed me as I started emptying summer containers and washing pots. And every time I returned to the patio my vase made me smile…


Many thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting this meme “In a Vase on Monday“. The challenge to find materials from the garden for a vase each week has made me look at the flowers and plants around me with new eyes!

Hope you have some sunshine this week too!

48 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday: Autumn Loveliness

  1. This is lovely Cathy, a real taste of autumn in the woods. The creeper does have wonderful coloured foliage and you’re right the English call it Virginia creeper but I think the Americans have a different name altogether. My advice for the cyclamen would be to not water too often and when you do stand it in a saucer and put the water in that but when the plant has taken the water it needs don’t leave it standing in water. I don’t suppose it was your fault when your cyclamen died within 48 hours, it was probably dying when you bought it.

    • Thanks for the comforting words Christina! I know cyclamens don’t like wet feet, so will be extra careful this time as I do like this colour. If it survives more than a couple of weeks I will have to give it another mention here! (And a medal perhaps!) 😉

  2. Oh now that’s a fabulous vase Cathy which makes me feel warm and glowing just looking at it. I thought that I might have the world record for killing off cyclamen but you have beaten me to it. Seriously though I think that Christina has hit the nail on the head with her comment.
    P.S. Your michaelmas daisy looks very similar to the one that was in my vase today.

    • Yes, a very similar aster to yours Anna. I must check in my labels box and look for its name…
      Cyclamens are tricky, but in general I am hopeless with all houseplants!

    • The sunlight does make so much difference, although the vase still seemed to glow today with dull skies. The vase was chosen for its weight – don’t want it blowing over!

  3. What a lovely idea to leave your vase on the patio table this week – as you empty your pots it will be nice to have some seasonal colour to look at. I love the berries and the autumn leaves – good luck with your cyclamen – hopefully we will see it again!

    • It is beginning to look a little bare round the house with a lot of pots already gone, although my geraniums will be allowed to stay a bit longer! I will definitely have to aim for a few outdoor vases later in the year too. 🙂

  4. Like Anna, it makes me feel all warm and glowing too – and not minding quite so much that autumn is creeping up! The way you have grouped these disparate elements together really works well – no wonder you were smiling! And a topical Haiku too – you have spoiled us!

    • I wasn’t able to incorporate the creepers into the vase, but the pieces I cut were just the right length to go round the base of my vase… pure luck! Thanks Cathy!

  5. Spectacular Cathy! You’ve outdone autumn itself with this exuberant arrangement. The “Bishop’s hats” and the Virginia Creeper look great together and love the red cyclamen to top it off.

  6. I love the vase sitting outdoors. I really hasn’t occurred to me to bring a vase outdoors–and looking at yours I can’t figure out why I’ve never done it myself! I love the Tangled Old Man’s Beard! And the seed heads are just delightful. So is your Haiku, Cathy. You’ve started the week out with lots of creativity and beauty. Nicely done! 🙂

    • Thank you! I think a vase outdoors is something I will have to try out more often Debra. And these Monday vases really are a great way to start off the week! 🙂

  7. By coincidence I have also just been taking pictures of the red spindle tree fruit, looking very good here in the UK too. I had wondered what they reminded me of and the Bishop’s Hat is a lovely description, part shape and part colour.

    • I find the name very apt too Philip. Apparently Epimediums are sometimes called Bishop’s Hat/Cap in the UK, while the German name is again so much better suited I think: “Elf flowers”. 🙂

  8. Hi Cathy. Yes, our ‘bonnet de l’évêque’ (spindle tree) is gorgeous too here, as our the michaelmas daisies which are nicknamed ‘vendangeuses’ as they flower at the time of grape picking. Not that there will be much of that today. Bucketing rain and we can’t see out beyond the end of our garden! Much needed though.

    • Common names can be so much nicer than the regular ones! We are also getting rain tonight, but more sunshine is forecast, so hope you get some too Lindsay!

    • I do hope your spindle produces seeds next year Janet – they are so pretty. I found some dried ones, perfectly preserved on a tree one spring. Quite magical.

  9. A lovely autumn arrangement. I love your haiku too. Euonymus berries are weirdly beautiful at this time of the year.
    Cylcamen are great here outside up to the first frosts, although as Christina says you have to be careful with watering. Inside, they collapse very quickly.

  10. Very pretty–I love those red berries, and the German name for them. We have lots of Virginia Creeper here, too–it would like to climb all over my back deck and even up the back wall of our house if we let it. I spend a good deal of time each spring yanking the stuff out! That cyclamen is gorgeous; maybe you’ll have better luck with it this time! Good advice to bottom water them, then dump out the water left in the saucer after an hour or so. Also, I have better luck with them if I get them out of the nursery potting mix and put them in something that doesn’t dry out so fast, especially when I buy them in the winter and bring them home to a house with dry heat! Finally, they do die back and go dormant once they’re done with their bloom, but don’t throw it out! I keep mine in our master bath, where it gets bright light and humidity, and I water it very sparingly until I see new growth sprouting up. Then I begin watering more regularly, and up it grows! Nice haiku–something about autumn seems to inspire poetic thoughts!

    • Thanks for the tips about the cyclamen. I feel I must make an extra special effort now to keep this one going! 😉 The creeper is rather invasive here, but nobody seems to mind it in their gardens… this is the first time I’ve seen it going wild though, so hope it doesn’t become a problem.

  11. Oh Wow! This is my favorite! The writing, the plants and the fact that it stays outside. I don’t know any of the plants but I love that Euonymus europaeus. I wonder if we can get it in U.S.? The clematis is gorgeous too, with that particular glass vase with the Euonymus. Just smashing! You must have been feeling extra creative (and even on a MOnday) to write the haiku too. Bravo!

    • Aah, thank you for all your kind words Andrea! It was a good way to start off the week, and I gathered the materials on Sunday afternoon so I wasn’t in a rush! 😉

  12. Your vase would make me smile too! I guess there’s no denying that autumn is here. The reds are so bright!
    I’m sorry for laughing when you mentioned your cyclamen track record 🙂

  13. A perfectly beautiful autumn arrangement, Cathy!
    I do love Virginia creeper in the fall…I grow Parthenocissus quinquefolia ‘Engelmannii’, which also turns a lovely red shade at this time of year. It is a bit on the aggressive side (understatement), but I cut it back almost annually to keep it from growing into the lawn!

  14. Lovely fall colors in your vase! I share your expertise in killing off the cyclamens! However, I think you do own the record!
    I planted a Virginia creeper this year, too. It turned a beautiful shade of red, but it looks like it’s going to lose most of its leaves. I didn’t know that.
    Thanks for sharing.

    • The cyclamen is still alive Sue – after over two weeks now! 🙂 Yes, that’s the down side of the Virginia creeper – the leaves drop very soon after turning that gorgeous colour and make a terrible mess. One of those plants you can love and hate at the same time!

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