In a Vase on Monday: Bye Bye August!

The last week of August has brought us relief from the heat and lots of rain, and the garden is suddenly looking sort of ‘in between’: like summer is over, but autumn hasn’t quite got going. I am dithering about cutting down zucchini and tomato plants, while wrapping up my basil at night as temperatures drop to single digits. The house martins I showed you last week are preparing to fly south. There is a saying here that they will be gone by September 8th, which in the Roman Catholic calendar is ‘Maria Geburt’ – the Birth of the Virgin Mary:

Am Maria Geburt fliegen die Schwalben furt’

And like so many of the old sayings here in Germany, it is still pretty accurate; last year I saw a few stragglers on the 9th but they left within a couple of days as well.

My Monday vase is reflecting the season perfectly this week, all the late summer golds and oranges once again.

The Golden Rod grows wild, just behind the fence, but pieces had been broken in the heavy rain at the weekend so I could easily reach over and pluck a few stems.

I decided to pick one of my sunflowers in the Herb Bed – next to my giant sunflower is another plant with a big stem with multiple flower heads. Not sure what sort though, as they all got mixed up when planting them out.

Then I added a red and a yellow Benary’s Giant zinnia, some Helianthus Lemon Queen, a Tithonia and some Rudbeckia, all from the Sunshine Bed.

Oh and some grasses. This one is Miscanthus Red Chief.

One more picture of the Tithonia… 😜

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting this meme. Her vase is so sweet this week!

Have a great week!

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Cosmos in Comparison

I believe most of the gardeners I know have at some stage grown Cosmos in their gardens. If you haven’t yet done so I would really recommend you to try. I have grown various ones over the years, so I thought I would do a little review of some that have thrived for me.

In Germany and in the UK they are sown in Spring and then planted out as soon as the danger of frosts is over. Such a shame they aren’t perennial! But they really are worth it as they are easy to grow.

First of all, Cosmos Double Click Cranberries. I have grown this one several times, and it has always germinated successfully, producing sturdy plants which flower profusely without too much foliage.

The petals have varied between plants, as you can see here. The single flower is one that set seed from last year’s crop.

I had forgotten there are quite a few in this series, and looking through old photos I grew this pink one – Double Click Rose Bonbon – some years ago.

I think that will go in my seed order for next year. πŸ˜‰

 

Another one I have grown frequently is Purity….

As much as I love the pure white flowers and the sturdy stems, I have to say I will not grow this one again as it produces just far too much thick foliage on a lot of the plants, and only the odd plant seems to produce plentiful flowers. (See what I mean in the photo below?)

If you have grown another single white one which you liked, please let me know!

Next, one I grew for the first time this year: Daydream. It is a big success!

Pretty pink flowers, sturdy stems, nice height and not too much foliage.

… and here again complete with bumbling visitor…

One to consider for my seed list for next year.

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This next one is one I grew a few years ago: Xanthos…

I loved the pale lemony yellow flowers, but was a bit disappointed that it had so many flowers on the end of each stem making deadheading pretty tricky. Lovely in vases though.

Further away from the traditional pinks and mauves is this yellow and orange mix called Brightness Mixed…

One of these (pictured with Margerites) is Cosmos sulphureus, but is hard to tell apart from the pale orange ones in the mix. All were very prolific on the flower front, but these are not so tall. Perhaps only 30 -40 cm. Perfect for pots though. πŸ˜ƒ

Antiquity is one I discovered last year. It is also a relatively short one, but the way the petals fade, like fabric bleached by the sun, is so endearing. Here it is in a vase with the Double Click Cranberries…

One disadvantage though is that they do look messy if not deadheaded frequently, don’t you think?…

I tend to have irregular deadheading sessions, largely dependent on whether it is too hot or not! So I think I will drop this one from my palette in future.

Others I have grown are Picotee and Candy Stripe, both pale pink. Here is Candy Stripe, second from the left, with the distinctive pinky red fringe on its petals…

There are probably a couple more I have grown in the past, but before the digital age took off, so no photos to remind me! (Oh, I am showing my age! … We were chatting recently about the days when you had to find a telephone box to make a phone call, and how I always made sure I had some change in my purse! LOL!)

Anyway, it would be so lovely if you could post about some of the Cosmos you have grown, or at least leave me a comment about your experience with them and any favourites. πŸ˜ƒ

Thanks for visiting!

In a Vase on Monday: Getting Carried Away

As many of you reading this will know, Monday is Vase Day! Joining Cathy at Rambling in the Garden is always a joy, and this week was no exception.

You know when you have a clear idea of what you want? Whether itβ€˜s an item of clothing, a new frying pan, or the flowers you want to highlight in a vase?

And then you see something else you fancy?…

Well, that happened to me this morning. I had my vase ready and wanted a minimalist look. And then I got a bit carried away, snipping a bit of this. And a bit of that. Oh and I must cut some those. And wouldn’t these go nicely…

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So the minimalist idea flew out the window and a new vase was found and I was very pleased in the end that I got carried away!

I won’t include a long list of what I picked, as most of these flowers have been used in the last few vases anyway, but I must point out the Tithonia (the bright orange flower) and thank Jason at Garden in a City for introducing me to these Mexican sunflowers several years ago. Although they have struggled with the drought this year, I would not want to be without them.

I took the photos in front of the barn, as it is one of those unusual windstill days here. A definite hint of autumn is in the air, reflected by the sedum you can see here starting to open, and the grasses used too. Our night time temperature dropped to its lowest since May, only 9Β°C.

Thank goodness the heat of the dog days is over and the garden can start to take deep gulps of the moist morning air to refresh it.

Have you seen any signs of autumn yet?

Have a happy week!

🌻🌻🌻