In a vase on Monday – Lilies at last!

Monday is here again and it’s time to join Cathy’s challenge to fill a vase with flowers from our garden.

Here are a few views of the cuttings bed to show how it is developing.

Sunflowers Van Gogh mix - new favourites for me!

Sunflowers Van Gogh mix – new favourites for me!

Gerbera were a contender for today's vase, they'll have to wait until later in the week

Gerbera were a contender for today’s vase, they’ll have to wait until later in the week

A dahlia about to open from a mixed pack of bulbs, I'm not sure I will keep it

A dahlia about to open from a mixed pack of bulbs, I’m not sure I will keep it

Cosmos and cornflowers

Cosmos and cornflowers



Longiflorum Lilies White American in pots in the vegetable garden

Longiflorum Lilies White American in pots in the vegetable garden

I’ve been waiting a couple of weeks now for the buds on the Longiflorum Lilies White American  to open.  These bulbs were purchased in autumn 2009 and planted in the square terracotta pots that are now placed by the front door; now that the terrace is shaded throughout summer the lilies were not performing well lst year so early in spring they were removed and replaced by Fatsia japonica that thrives in the shade.  I replanted the now many bulbs large and small into pots with the intention that they should be for cutting, even the quite small bulbs have produced one flower on the stem and the larger ones have several flower heads.  These lilies are interesting in that the perfume isn’t present during the day but is deliciously sweet as soon as dusk arrives making them idea for planting where you might eat outside during the evening.

Longiflorum Lilies White American

Longiflorum Lilies White American


The silver vase seemed appropriate for the lilies

The silver vase seemed appropriate for the lilies, I think the colours are true in this image

I wanted to add something to the lilies but I wasn’t sure what, as I walked around the garden I found the seed pods on some Hemerocallis and liked their form so I included those.  The Knautia is growing really well in the cuttings bed so I decided to use lots of that to add airiness to the arrangement and contrast with the pure white of the lilies.  After I had picked the Knautia I thought I’d just check on the progress of the Gladioli I planted early in the year.  These bulbs were purchased from the local DIY store that has a few token bulbs usually displayed long after they should be in the ground; these however started growing soon after they were planted and today I discovered that one was just coming into flower and amazingly it was the same colour as the Knautia; it therefore became the focus of the arrangement.

Surprise find - Gladiolus

Surprise find – Gladiolus

P1160464 blog

Photographing the arrangement was again more difficult than finding the flowers, I first tried on the stairs indoors but it was too dark; I then tried a couple of places outside in some places it was too sunny in others there was too much extraneous detail.  I need to play around more with the settings on the camera but as always I was short of time this morning.

Some of you were kind enough to ask me to show the arrangement made with the Cosmos and Regal lilies last week.


Cosmos Pink Sensation, Lilum Regale Album and pink corn flowers

Cosmos Pink Sensation, Lilum Regale Album and pink corn flowers

Do visit Cathy’s post to see what she and other participants have found in their gardens today.


32 thoughts on “In a vase on Monday – Lilies at last!

  1. A lovely arrangement Christina, Knautia is a lovely airy plant, I grow it here although sometime a little mildew creeps in. Good to see your cutting beds too, the sunflowers are a really lovely mix of colours.

    • Thanks Julie, I’m pleased with this one and happy to know that there will be a couple of pickings at least of the lilies. It is probably too dry here for mildew, or I hope so at least.

  2. Hmm, I don’t think I shall be showing off my cuttings bed… 😦 Yours is looking great! I love the shade of the knautia and gladiolus and they really ‘lift’ the white of the lilies – and your cosmos and lily arrangement was beautiful too. I have only had 2 flowers on my cosmos yet so they won’t be appearing a vase yet! Thanks for joining in – I love seeing all the other vases!

  3. Both arrangements are beautiful, Christina. Tall flowers (and vases) always add a touch of elegance. I was surprised to see your L. longiflorum blooming now – here, they’re popularly known as Easter lilies and usually show up in early spring. I’ve never grown them but now find I may need to try.

    • I’m amazed by what you say about the lilies; in the UK they flower even later than here, mid-July! They have a wonderful perfume not sickly as other lilies can be indoors.

  4. What a gorgeous combination, Christina! But I could not help thinking, with our American July 4th Independence Day coming up, I would add a touch of blue for the perfect red, white, and blue patriotic flare!

    • Red, White and Blue is the colour of the Union Jack too, of course. I don’t have anything blue to pick, although I suppose I could have included Perovskia!

  5. Lillies and gladioli – I really am jealous Christina – I will have to wait a while to see those in my garden. I find it hard to believe you would cut the lilies, but I guess it is different when something is very easy to grow – do you have lilly beetles in Italy? Well done on two lovely arrangements!

    • Thanks Julie, I appreciate your praise. Yes, we have lily beetle, they love the Madonna lilies the most so this year they arrived in January when their foliage first emerged. They like these too but attack the Regal lilies the least.

  6. Oh my that is AMAZING! you photographed it really well too. It is just such a sexy arrangement and an excellent composition. I really like everything about it, including the vase. Hmmm, I think flowers look better in a vase than out in the garden now… that’s what i am thinking.

  7. I planted gladiolas last year, but only three of them bloomed. Then I saw them at the store for $3.99 for a 5 stem bunch. They are so dramatic in arrangements. Using a single stem like that hadn’t occurred to me. Your whole bouquet is stunning. I agree that it is difficult to photograph, especially very tall bouquets.

    • Sorry you had problems growing gladioli, I’ve not found them to be difficult, they like free draining soil and not too cold winters, but I grew some on my allotment in England for many years. There was only one ready so it had to be a single stem.

  8. Beautiful! Everything is beautiful! Nice surprise in finding the gladiolus in bloom and a great color too. (Mine are not quite ready.) The lilies are versatile and work great in both arrangements. The idea of them perfuming the air during an evening dinner outdoors makes them even more valuable and I know we’ve discussed this before: it’s so nice to have white flowers in the garden to show off at dusk.

  9. That gladioli was the perfect find Christina! It adds height and colour and highlights the Knautia beautifully. It’s interesting that you started off with focus on the lilies (which are also lovely) but ended up with another focal point. The vase goes very well, and I like the setting for the photo on the gravel. I’m also finding it hard to find the right spot for photos!

    • Yes it is interesting that I hadn’t any real expectation that the gladioli would be flowering, I’d looked on Saturday and they looked a long way off. Photographing the vases is a real challenge; my camera is brilliant for macro and wide angle outside but doesn’t perform well in low light situations even with the flash. I was slightly aware of that before but it wasn’t an issue as most of my photographs are outside. I may need to think about buying another camera! expensive meme, if that is the case! I always think your photographs are good of your vases, what camera do you have?

  10. A beautiful arrangement, Christina! I’ve been thinking about including Knautia in one of my arrangements. Sadly without the complementary gladiolus! And sadly without lilies either! Red lily beetle deprived me of them – and I adore white lilies too. 😦

  11. Lilies are one of those flowers which I just consider to be beautiful. There are many others that look great and are colorful, but lilies are so graceful. The gladiolus does look great in the first arrangement with the knautia, you make me regret not splurging on new bulbs this spring. -I was too lazy to plant the ones I saved last winter, and only got one bloom once they made it into the ground, so to teach myself a lesson I refused to buy all the tempting gladiolus that came my way. Strangely enough after one of the worst winters in a long time I had a few tiny ones overwinter. Maybe I’ll get a flower this year after all!

  12. Pingback: In a vase on Monday – Creamy White | Creating my own garden of the Hesperides

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