In a Vase on Monday: Snowballs

The Viburnum opulus in our hedgerows is flowering beautifully this year, prompting me to pick some for a vase this week. In German this shrub is called ‘Schneeball’, as the white flowers shine out from the hedgerows like balls of white snow. 😃

And here is the vase.

 

On a whim the cow parsley just the other side of the fence was picked too. And a few grasses from the hedge and the garden were also added. 😃

 

 

 

Close up you can see the ring of outer petals on the Viburnum, attracting the insects to the tiny inner fertile flowers. The berries in autumn are beautiful too – a bright shiny red.

 

I have never looked at cow parsley (Anthriscus sylvestris) so closely before – they remind me of lots of tiny stars.

Some parts of Germany have had terrible storms over the past few days, but we have been lucky so far…. fingers crossed. Tonight another round of thunderstorms is forecast, but let’s hope for the best!

Thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting this meme. And thanks to you for visiting. 😃

 

Himalayan Foxtail Lilies

In the autumn of 2020 I planted three strange roots that reminded me of an octopus – Eremurus himalaicus, Himalayan Foxtail Lilies.

Here is a photo I found online which shows what I mean about the octopus…

They were carefully positioned in the new Moon Bed, between the giant white Alliums ‘Mount Everest’ – after all, I wanted them to feel at home! 😉

Well, in the spring of 2021 only one showed any signs of life, with no flower. So I had more or less written them off. But this spring three clumps of leaves appeared mid-April. Hooray!

They are a bit difficult to distinguish from the allium foliage in this photo

One fell victim to slugs I think, but soon buds appeared on the other two plants. The excitement mounted, and suddenly the buds seemed to have doubled in size overnight! (Things like that happen here in May! 😉)

Or tripled?! This photo was taken on the 13th of May.

My attention was now well and truly focussed and I have been checking them daily since. By May 16th these imposing and majestic spikes had just started to open…

May 16th

The next day a few more flowers opened from the bottom upwards, clambering towards the blue skies…

May 17th

They love sunny, dry spots, and I have heard them called ‘Desert Candles’, as well as ‘Cleopatra’s Needles’. Maybe you know them by those names? Eremurus himalaicus was the first of the lilies to be taken to Europe in the early 19th century. It is also the earliest flowering one.

By May 18th both stems were open over halfway…

 

The bees like it too. 😃

On May 19th they were almost completely open. Who would have thought just two plants could make such an impression!

Well, here we are on May 21st, and I am completely bowled over by these flowers.

It is a plant with character, shining out above most of the other plants. It has presence. Whereas with other favourites  my reaction might be to grow more of them in a clump, with the Himalaya Foxtail I feel these two flowers are enough to make a statement. Well, three would also be lovely of course, and perhaps the third one will flower next year. I have since read that they can take a year or two to get started. But there are several other species that have different coloured flowers, some of them even taller than these…. perhaps I will be tempted to try some orange or yellow ones in another part of the garden. 😉

This is one of the loveliest plants I have ever grown. 😃

Would you give this plant space in your garden? Or perhaps you already grow them?

 

World Bee Day, 2022

I just saw Eliza’s post about World Bee Day, so felt compelled to post something before this day goes by unnoticed. Like Eliza, I ask all gardeners please not to use chemicals to get rid of weeds or pests. There is almost always a kinder alternative that will not harm pollinators.

This is my Peony ‘Claire de lune’ which opened yesterday, with a bee in her ruffles. 😃

 

In a Vase on Monday: Summer Memories

Isn’t it nice to look back at photos in the realization that spring is not far off and soon our gardens will be performing again like last year? My arrangement this week brought back memories not only of my own garden, but also of the garden show I visited in Ingolstadt last September. (Above photo)

The crystal bud vase is filled with tiny porcelain flowers and butterflies I bought there, which I intend to give away eventually, one by one. But for now they are still sitting in waiting. 😉

And the pink dried flowers at the base are Helichrysum bracteatum ‘Silvery Rose’, grown two summers ago and saved. The three purple ones are Xeranthemums, which I grew last summer under the impression they would be like traditional strawflowers. They are much smaller though.

I was not terribly impressed with them actually, as they are flimsy plants which lean at the slightest breeze and make little impact in terms of flowers; only one or two opened at a time. I am returning to the original Helichrysum this year, with some more freshly ordered. 😃

Many thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting. 😃 You should visit her blog to see what Cathy and the other participants linking in have found to put in a vase on this Monday, which is, by the way, the last of January! Yippee! (Detect my dislike of January there? 😉)

Hope you have a flowery week and a good start to February!

🌷🌷🌷

A Week of Flowers 2021, Day Six


It is Day Six of my Week of Flowers and I am soaking up all the colour my blogging friends are sharing! Tomorrow will be the final day of this meme. So if you haven’t joined in yet, please do! Just post a photo of a flower (or two) and leave a link below. 😃

The Moon Bed, August

Today the focus is on shapes. Two seedheads of the Allium ‘Everest’ were still standing in the Moon Bed (above) in August, amongst white Gaura, Cosmos and Nicotiana. The purple Alliums (below) didn’t last as long after flowering, but were perhaps more dramatic and visible while in flower.

Verbena has spread all over the garden now, and I really love the shape and height it adds. I leave it standing until it collapses in the frost or snow.. Then there is the Echinops ‘Veitch’s Blue’. It isn’t really blue, but near enough. Love those spiky flower heads. 😉 I tried perennial sweet peas on the obelisks this year, and they did really well, climbing almost to the top of the tallest one. Certainly pretty flowers, but I love the long tendrils and seedpods too. 💕

Thanks to all those who have joined in again today, and to all my other readers too. 🤗

A Week of Flowers 2021, Day Two

Today is the second day of my Week of Flowers, where I am inviting you all to join in with me and post a bright and cheerful photo of a flower or two each day for a whole week.

So many have already contributed on Day One with beautiful reminders of what has flowered this year and what will be in the coming Spring. So if you haven’t joined in yet, please do, and leave a comment below to share. Let’s cheer up this dark time of year!

My garden has brought me so much pleasure this year, and I am sharing some of the sunshine colours today.

I especially loved my sunflowers this year, which benefitted from warm and damp weather as opposed to the hot and dry springs and summers we have had in recent years. Here is a link to more photos of them in The ‘Edge.

Wishing you all a sunny day!

In a Vase on Sunday: A Happy Bunch

 A mixed bunch of sunny flowers and grasses seemed just right today, as I try and hang on to summer and bring lots of summery and late summer flowers indoors. And it turned out to be such a happy vaseful of sunshine that I decided to dedicate it to all those who don’t have any sunshine or flowers today, and also to my friend Elisabeth, whose old doggie crossed the rainbow bridge to doggie heaven recently. I hope this will brighten her day too.

🌻🐾🐾☀️

The sunflowers and Tithonia are still producing flowers, despite chilly nights. The Asters have started showing their shiny faces and sparkle in the morning dew. We have rosehips galore (as well as loads of other berries, which may feature in another vase soon). All my Miscanthus are now in full swing, and a few late Larkspur, Cosmos, Geraniums, Scabiosa and Knautia also made it into the vase. And see that blue sky again? 😃😃😃

Thanks as always to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden who hosts this meme.

Wishing you all a sunny week!