In a Vase on Monday: An Artist’s Palette

I am back in Germany now, and after a short break from blogging I am pleased to be joining Cathy at Rambling in the Garden with a vase (well, actually two) filled with delights from my garden.


On the left: A small pink Lilac Wonder, Jan Steen, Lucky Parrot, and Lilac Wonder again.

Centre top is unknown, and at the front is Aga Khan, a lovely bright double orange flower with a short stem, going well with the orange Princess Irene at the back. I think the pink parrot tulip on the right is Libretto, and the double white is called Gerard Dou.

The second vase belowย  contains Purple Dream, the yellow Flashback, Green Star, White Triumphator, Spring Green and a clashing red Eyecatcher. A few remain nameless, but nonetheless gorgeous.


When I was asked to draw a flower as a child, I inevitably drew a tulip. Later, when asked what my favourite flower was, I would usually say tulips. No roses for me! Today I am still drawn to these beautiful and varied blooms. Aren’t they just fascinating?



On my return from the UK at the weekend I was amazed to find how far ahead Germany is already. With some very warm and sunny days recently the trees are more green than brown, the blackthorn blossom has been and gone and the tulips are in full force – many flowering earlier than usual so the combinations are a little over-the-top, but I love them!

However, it has turned very cold here again this week, and April is behaving badly as usual with wintry snow showers spoiling the intermittent sunshine. I did manage to catch the sun shining through a skylight in our hall though, creating the dramatic effect in the photos. Sometimes I wish I could paint…

I’ll leave you with a few pictures of the tulips outside, enjoying a drop of sunshine again after yet another snow flurry!

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Have a lovely week everyone!

59 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday: An Artist’s Palette

  1. you have some stunning tulips Cathy; there are so many to choose from I find it almost impossible to stop myself from ordering them all! the doubles and Parrots look fantastic together. It’s turned very cold here too tonight is is supposed to drop almost to freezing, I’m crossing all my fingers as I have already planted out tomatoes!

    • Thanks Christina. And the cold weather means they are lasting really well outdoors too! I hope it warms up a bit for us all soon though. Your spring has also been cooler than normal hasn’t it?

      • Early spring was warm but the last 10 days at least has been very cold with night time temperatures dipping to 2 degrees C!!!! Not what I’d expect for the end of April.

    • Hi Donna. Some of the tulips seem to disappear before ever flowering… obviously attractive to the mice or squirrels, but others come up year after year with barely any losses so I consider myself very lucky!

  2. Gosh I have a slight case of tulip envy! These are beautiful Cathy. And the lighting in your first photo does make it look like a Dutch master’s painting. Gorgeous.

    • Hi Sam. I’ve been planting tulips every autumn for several years now, and this year has been the best show so far so the hard work really pays off. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. I love the way you have incorporated tulips into the borders. You may not paint with paint, but you surely paint with flowers with an artist’s eye.

    • Oh thank you Ricki – such a nice comment again! I do love splashes of colour all around the garden – sometimes they clash but I don’t really mind that. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. What a gorgeous selection of tulips you have – such lovely shapes and colours. They look especially good against the dark background – and how interesting to see the extra pictures of your garden too. Thanks for sharing

  5. Oh you have some beauties there Cathy – yet more varieties to investigate ๐Ÿ™‚ I also had two vases today and there were tulips in both of them. A rather nasty cold wind here today and hail this afternoon. Spring has gone back into hiding.

    • Some of the tulips I now have were first seen on other blogs. I shall also be looking for new varieties for the autumn. We have had snow, hail, rain, sunshine and rainbows this week… hoping for some gardening weather soon!

    • I certainly prefer the real tulips to the old paintings, but I do like the dark background too. These have motivated me to add to the collection further!

    • There are so many lovely tulips, but when I look at the bulb catalogues each autumn I have to remind myself who is planting them all! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  6. WordPress and Google aren’t cooperating so forgive me if you receive multiple comments from me, Cathy. Your bountiful tulips are beautiful and I enjoyed seeing photos from your garden too. What a wonderful scene to come home to!

  7. Beautiful, I don’t think I would be able to pick a favorite, but the parrots are always so over the top and carefree. It’s warmed up here and appears ready to stay so… until the next cold front swings through!

    • I do love the Libretto ones this year, but there are still some parrots to open. ๐Ÿ™‚ We have had a really icy cold week, so hoping that some gardening weather is on its way now.

  8. Beautiful tulips, Cathy! What a marvelous range of forms and colours… It is hard to beat tulips for that! Hope your weather calms down and behaves itself soon ๐Ÿ™‚

    • They must have been such a sensation back then Annette. I would probably have invested in a bulb or two if I had been a rich landowner! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I think it is wonderful that there are so many new varieties being cultivated these days too.

  9. I’m pleased you’re safely back. Don’t the colours look glorious against black? In another era, you could have bankrupted yourself with tulipmania. Thank goodness you’re a 21st century tulip fan.

    • Although I did spend rather a lot on bulbs last autumn… ๐Ÿ˜‰ I can quite understand why people were so in awe of these flowers back in the early days. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Thank you Susie! Yes, the parrots all hang their heads a bit when wet and icy, but they perk up as soon as the sun comes out again. The icy showers continue, but the forecast is for calmer weather soon…

  10. I hope you had a good trip Cathy, sorry the weather wasn’t warmer here! We had snow today and its woolly hat and thermal vest weather. Its amazing how Tulips still look good when conditions are this cold, but thankfully they do.

    • That is one advantage of a cool spring – the flowers last longer! As much as I love my tulips though I would love some warmer gardening weather. Maybe next week…

  11. I’ve been longing to see some gorgeous parrot tulips, so I appreciate all your lovely ones, the squirrels and voles won’t let me grow them, perhaps I should try a pot but the squirrel actually dame and dug up one of my Freesia bulbs and I had to put wire on them. The Lucky parrot colors are close to my ideal flower colors, and so frilly, Cathy!

    • They are gorgeous aren’t they. I love the parrot tulips, but then I love the early botanical ones too, and the tall lily-shaped ones, and and and! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  12. What a picturesque and colourful variety of tulips – like paintings of Van Gogh! You really are a lucky tulip gardener, Cathy!

    • Hi Elisabeth! I am really enjoying the tulips this spring. A few degrees more warmth would be nice though, so I could go out and do some gardening jobs.

    • Thanks Lori. Taking the photos also made me think of the old Dutch painters looking for the perfect spot with the perfect light to capture the beauty of the tulips.

  13. The spring flowers in your garden are beautiful as are the stunning mix of colors in your vases. I love tulips but was never able to grow them in my gardens when we lived in New England because of deer. Here in Florida, the weather is too hot so I’m enjoying your tulips immensely.

    • Thanks Jason. This is the first year I have gone out and cut so many without feeling I was robbing the garden. All that planting is paying off. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  14. Welcome home, Cathy. Your garden is gorgeous with all those blooms. I too would draw a tulip as a child, or several in a row in front of my house with a sun in the corner. Thanks for tickling that memory! Funny.

    Your vases always inspire. I hope May brings warmer days. We too are expecting cooler temps and rain starting tomorrow, but around here that kind of weather is welcome.

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