In a vase on Monday – calm versus vibrant

The flowers in the cuttings garden have been so plentiful in this past week; I could have filled a house with vases!  While I was away all the lilies flowers and finished so there will be no vases full of their perfume this year which is sad.  Some of the gladioli are also finished; some I was able to give to a friend and others were used for a religious ceremony, a few I used today and the rest I will try to use during this week, they won’t last until next Monday when I will again join with Cathy from Rambling in the garden for her weekly meme.  This week I have two very different vases; one cool and elegant with just white flowers the other couldn’t be more colourful.

All the dahlias I planted this year were white, and I have included most in my large bowl; one of those I planted is very short and although is a pleasant enough form it doesn’t fit with the others so I will remove it in autumn, hopefully I can find a new home for it with friends.

A huge bowl of white flowers adds elegance to the sitting room

A huge bowl of white flowers adds elegance to the sitting room

White Antirrhinums are such a fabulous flowers, I will definitely be growing more of these next year; the flowers I picked today came from just two plants that had been cut down almost to the ground before I went on holiday so that these blooms are shorter than the original stems but still strong and long enough to form an edging to the bowl today.


Gladioli white with w hint of purple

Gladioli white with w hint of purple

I rescued the last of the white gladioli, these have a very faint purple centre so would work well with the purples and pinks of other flowers but for this vase it is their form as much as the colour that I wanted.

Ami Majus, Cosmos 'purity' and a pom-pom dahlia

Ami Majus, Cosmos ‘purity’ and a pom-pom dahlia

White Cosmos never last all that long in a vase but I still like their pure whiteness especially when used with other white flowers.  The only ‘white’ that to my eyes looks slightly grey is the Ami majus.

Cosmos 'Purity'

Cosmos ‘Purity’

This dahlia has a lovely form and is prolific

This dahlia has a lovely form and is prolific

This is last year's white Dahlia, no name I'm afraid

This is last year’s white Dahlia, no name I’m afraid

Zinnias are all that was needed for the vibrant vase; I am newly in love with zinnias, I’m not sure how they can have escaped my notice before.  But I suppose that I’ve never really been interested in annuals before for the garden.  I will be searching out other cultivars but I am more than happy with the rich hues from this  cheap mixed pack of seeds from a local DIY store.  The more special green flowered zinnias from Sarah Raven produced very weak plants that mostly died before being planted out.

Mixed zinnias

Mixed zinnias

My new love - Zinnias

My new love – Zinnias

Mixed zinnias

Mixed zinnias

Mixed zinnias

Mixed zinnias

Do visit Cathy to see what she and others have found in their gardens today, or better still why not join in, but I warn you this is the most addictive meme there is!

33 thoughts on “In a vase on Monday – calm versus vibrant

  1. Wow, that white vase is just amazing Christina! Love it. Such a nice mix of form and textures. Glad you’re enjoying the pleasure of zinnias too. They really look nice and summery. I also planted green ones this year for the first time (different seed source) and they didn’t come up at all and only a handful of the regular mix survived.

    • Good to know about your experience with the green zinnias Susie, maybe they are a weak cultivar. My mixed coloured ones were very cheap Italian seed so I’m very happy with them; although I would like to grow definite single colours so I know what I’m going to get.

  2. I like both your vases, but the white one is my favourite. I love the mix of textures and the overall shape you have created. I planted some white antirrhinums this year but was a bit disappointed with the amount of yellow in them. Think I will try seeds next year if my little growhouse is warm enough.

  3. I also love both your vases Christina. The calm and elegant white flowers look cool and classy. Your zinnias are brilliant. I’ve grown them this year too but no flowers so far. I can’t wait for that riot of colour to appear.

  4. I love the elegant white bowl of flowers, also the vibrant zinnias, which I have never succeeded in growing in the garden. Last year I bought some and grew them in a large pot and they were delightful, lasting for ages.

  5. It’s hard to know which I prefer, how lovely to have two such different and beautiful arrangements. Before seeing this I would probably be mixing pink dahlias, white cosmos, etc etc together but this makes me realise how much better they would look arranged separately. Thanks for the ideas and inspiration Christina.

  6. Absolutely gorgeous Christina – and I am glad I didn’t use my white dahlias today even though they would be perfect for picking! It’s intriguing to see how different the ‘whites’ are, isn’t it? I believe green zinnias are notoriously temperamental – I have about 3 plants but they are still tiny. Your other zinnias are stupendous though – again mine are way way behind. I would love to have a colourful vase of them like that one of yours! Thanks for sharing.

  7. Your white vase is so beautiful, Christina! I suspect your cutting garden is a wonder to behold. I’m trying zinnias again myself this year – they need more water than they got in my garden beds last year so I planted them in my raised veg beds instead, where they can get a little more babying – although old-fashioned flowers, I love them too.

    • I think zinnias deserve to be the height if fashion, but I’m speaking as a new convert! All my flowers for cutting are with the vegetables, it is the only way they would have enough water.

    • I love cut white flowers, either on their own or mixed with other colours; this year I bought only white dahlias, I may buy some colours next year but they produce so many flowers I’m not sure how I’d use them all.

  8. Wow, your zinnias are – not surprisingly – quite a way ahead of mine. I just hope I get such as spectacular display. I’ve certainly enjoyed growing them in the past and they’re now on my must-sow list of annuals. I usually just go a cheap DIY store mix too and I’ve been happy with the results.

  9. Your white vase is wonderful – I love monochromes, and what a great combination of forms! But I have to admit that I’m taken by the zinnias – not a plant I’ve grown, to be honest. My sister tried them one year, only to watch them taken out wholesale by squirrels. That sort of thing doesn’t seem to have been a problem for yours?!

  10. White flowers ring my bell. Amazing how much subtle coloration there is in an “all white” bouquet. Also a sucker for bright color and nothing does it better than Zinnias. My neighbor has a hedge of Zinnias outside his fence along the roadside. What a gift to passers-by. My last two years of starting them indoors has been lackluster, with the few I direct-seeded outdoors being much more successful. Those cheap mixes from the local supermarket have been far more prolific than the green ‘Envy’ or the all red with fancy packaging.

    • Most of the white dahlias have a little yellow in their centres and as I said the Ami looks grey against the other whites but overall the arrangement looks white, so I’m very happy with it. Interesting that you’ve also had problems with the green zinnia, I’ll try the rest of the packet of seed but if they don’t germinate or grow well I won’t bother again.

  11. You have me reconsidering this year’s zinnia fail! They’re so cheerful looking and I love the color mix you picked for your vase. Maybe I will try and start another trayful… but then again we’re going away shortly so maybe I’ll have to plan on next year 😦
    The white arrangement is fabulous of course. Glad to see you having such good luck again with the dahlias and I’m with you completely on your love of snapdragons. I bet if you cut them back again as temperatures cool they’ll put on another fantastic show!

    • I’m thrilled with the colourful zinnias so I can understand your disappointment that yours didn’t grow. Were they ‘specials’ or a mixed pack? From what others commenters are saying, it is the cheap mixed packs that do well and the expensive specials that fail. Going on holiday does get in the way of gardening doesn’t it? But sometimes you come back with fresh eyes.

  12. I love white flowers and your white arrangement is so beautiful. Julie gave me some Ammi plants in the Spring and they have grown enormous and looked fabulous. I shall have a go at white Snapdragons next year, they are love!y.
    I am new to growing zinnias this year and I can’ t think why I never grew them before, they are so pretty and look gorgeous in your arrangement. The trouble is slugs love them too.

    • I’ve never grown zinnias either and I don’t even remember seeing them mentioned very much; they are such fabulous intense hues that I will certainly grow them again next year.

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