In a Vase on Monday: Helianthus tuberosus

Helianthus tuberosus is making a statement in our garden at the moment. 😃

In winter, my Man of Many Talents decided to try this plant as an alternative to potatoes (which did not do well last year due to the wet and the mice). The two long strips of ground used for potatoes last year were tilled once more and he planted the tubers in early spring.

 

The tubers are edible, and are known as Topinambur or Jerusalem Artichoke. I must be honest, the flavour does not appeal to me much – earthy, nutty, and rather strong, they overpower other flavours if added to a dish. But sliced thinly and fried or baked they are a nice accompaniment to a meal. If you have eaten them and have any good ideas of how to enjoy them, please do let me know.

So the tubers are not a big hit, but the flowers ARE! They were slow to get started but by August the plants were enormous, and about two weeks ago they started flowering….

The tallest must be about three metres, at least.

So my vase today is jam-packed with these gorgeous perennial sunflowers. They create the wonderful effect of a burst of sunshine indoors on a cloudy day. 😃

The tubers can stay in the ground over winter and be harvested as we want them, or simply left to produce flowers again next summer. They were watered once in the middle of the drought, but I think you could definitely label them as very drought-tolerant. But be warned. Given ideal conditions they can take over, so should only be planted where they can spread happily. 😃

 

I do actually have two more vases to share today as well. This one is leftovers from last week – annual sunflowers, Chrysopsis and some Golden Rod.

And my last vase is rather an incredible one. Back in August (the 8th to be precise) I posted this photo of a vase full of globe-shaped flowers and seedheads.

Well, after about ten days I removed the water and a couple of wilted pieces, and let the contents simply dry in the vase. And this is how it looks now…

I haven’t dared move it, and just dust around it, as the grasses and Echinops are very fragile. I am impressed with how well everything has lasted.

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting this meme. Do go and visit her to see what gardeners are picking from their gardens today! 😃

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In a Vase on Monday: A September Sigh

Along with some recent rain showers (some of which have been quite decent), cool nights and misty mornings are reviving the garden. So my vase today is simply a big sigh of September loveliness. 😃

Japanese Anemone ‘Serenade’, with a mix of asters, some Calamagrostis and a few strands of Gaura.

Thanks to Cathy, at Rambling in the Garden, for hosting this meme.

Have a lovely week, and happy gardening!

 

In a Vase on Monday: Relief

I am back to join Cathy at Rambling in the Garden with her lovely meme after a couple of weeks off.

The summer was a trying one, but the lower night time temperatures recently plus two whole days of light rain have provided some relief. I wouldn’t exactly say the garden has sprung back to life, but after chopping back the plants that suffered most I can at least bare to look at it again, and as you can see from my vases, I do have some flowers to pick still! 😃

First the pastels:

Perennial sweet pea, Cosmos, Echinacea, Verbena, Agastache, Sedum, Scabiosa, Miscanthus and Asters along with a lovely creamy white Heuchera flower which gets ten out of ten for surviving the heat!

Then a few hotter colours in my newest vase – a cheapie red glass bottle found at my local supermarket for a song. 😉

Orange Cosmos, Tithonia, Calamagrostis, Gaillardia, Persicaria, Plumbago, a red and a blue Salvia,  and a poppy seedhead.

I must admit the apples are also from the supermarket – we will have a few to harvest soon, but not as many as last year. But the vegetables should make up for that; the beans and zucchini were wonderful and I still have over twenty butternut squash to harvest!

Hope you have had a good summer and are looking forward to autumn as much as I am – my favourite time of year. 😃

In a Vase on Monday: Out of the Mist

There is not much in the way of flowers now, but there are still a few white asters (‘Ashvi’), glowing in the Moon Bed. They are even visible in thick morning fog and at dusk too.  They are very welcome, as we have only had very brief glimpses of the sun and just a hint of the full moon last week. They were therefore the obvious choice for today’s vase, as I join Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for her lovely Monday meme. 😃

Another obvious choice for me was the tall Iris sibirica and Allium millenium seedheads, which add a ghostly effect.

And the smaller grey seedheads are from the Pycnanthemum, which I grew for the first time in both the Herb and Moon Beds. I am very pleased at how they last. The last seedhead of a Scabiosa perfecta was also saved from some tidying up yesterday.

I then found an intact Echinacea seedhead (most of them have disintegrated or been eaten by the birds), a sprig of Calamagrostis and a couple of late Scabiosa ochroleuca flowers. All in all, along with my ‘moon’ vase as I call it, this little collection brightens a dismal drizzly day.

Thanks to Cathy for hosting. I am especially looking forward to seeing some flowers from warmer climes later today when I visit her blog and see what everyone else has found to share in their vases from around the world.

Have a great week!

😁

In a Vase on Monday: Mums – and Dads!

Chrysanthemums/Chrysanths/Mums – are in my vase today, still looking very fresh despite some chilly damp weather last week. A few fading Sedums accompany them.
But can you spot the two surprise flowers tucked in?

Yes, a pink and a purple Scabiosa were braving the cold wind in the Oval Bed. I brought them in to enjoy close up.

I chose my title because this vase is for my parents. My Mum is feeling low today and my Dad is fed up too… he has been in hospital and is hoping he can finally go home soon.

Flowers can raise our spirits, and I am glad to be able to share such a cheerful bunch mid-November. Wishing you all a sunny week and thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting!

🍁☀️🍄