I had a few things that needed to be done first thing this morning and I wasn’t convinced there would be anything to pick for a vase to today so I wasn’t sure I would join Cathy at Rambling in the Garden‘s Monday challenge to find something in our own gardens to cut and put in a vase to enjoy in our homes.But I had seen the tightly closed buds on Viburnum tinus and decided the shrub had grown enough for me to be able to pick some without robbing the garden of the few flowers there are at this time of year. I know many of you find Viburnum tinus boring but it responds differently in the climate here and so I am pleased when it has flowers!
While walking around the garden looking for other possibilities I was amazed to see that the yellow crocus were all flowering; many were looking a little sad as it was cold last night but I expect them to perk up later in the day; that will give me the impetus to walk around again.
This is a new vase, the mouth of the vase is quite wide and so needed some pebbles in the bottom to help keep the strong stems in position.
I have two Fatsia japonica in large pots by the front door, their flower stems and seed heads always seem to pull the plant down so cutting a couple of stems was necessary to the plant as well as a welcome texture for the vase.
I don’t remember the flowering of Arbutus unedo lasting into the winter in other years, but they are a useful supply of nectar for any bees that find it warm enough to fly.
The Iris in last week’s vases didn’t last very long (just a couple of days) but the Teucrium and Lavender are still adding some colour so I added the lower stems of the Fatsia japonica that I’d removed for the main vase.
A big thank you to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for encouraging us to find something to pick even in the depths of winter; I’m sure that without here I wouldn’t have a vase to enjoy this week. Do visit to see the treasures she has found this week.
Amo quelle bottigline del Campari!!!
Anche a me
Such pretty flowers on the arbutus.
Did you pick the iris in bud? It is such fun watching them unfurl in water, almost in front of your eyes.
The three Irises last week were already open but when they were finished I picked a bud, remembering what you said and yes it was lovely to watch it unfurl, but it still died too quickly for me to pick any more. They seem to last a bit longer in the garden.
I like the Viburnum, I have seen disparaging comments about it, It is new to me.Glad you are seeing Crocus, always a reminder of better things to come.
Yes, the Crocus were a lovely surprise; maybe they’re flowered early because of the cold period before Christmas (and after). I think people don’t like Viburnum because you see it everywhere in the UK, municipal plantings, almost every garden and park – but the reason for that is that it actually offers something all year. In England it flowers for at least 6 months of the year, here for some undiscovered reason it remains in bud for ages but the flowering period is much shorter.
We have a similar Viburnum here, V. suspensum, though yours sounds better.Thank you for the information, I have been wondering about that.
Oh you have caught the fatsia flowers at just the right moment – don’t they look lovely, in both your main vase and added to last week’s ones? They look wonderful against the greenery and I am so glad you decided to take a look and see what there was this morning. Crocus too! There are certainly spikes of other things coming up here but my crocus are planted in grass and hard to see until they actually flower.
I really don’t remember the Crocus flowering this early before but I am always surprised when these yellow ones bloom as I never notice the foliage when it appears.
I really need to go and have a poke around in the streamside grass then!
I just checked and the Crocus are early this year; last year it was the 6th February before they flowered. Crocus never last long for me so I don’t think they would have been flowering for more than a couple of days before I photographed them. Possibly they are responding to the cold autumn. I think my tulips in the garden will be early this year too.
I have found crocus leaves!
Won’t be long then!
I don’t know Viburnum tinus first-hand but it has an interesting form that is appealing. Delighted you have crocus flowering–that’s a cheery thought. I noticed yesterday my daffodils are a couple of inches tall here…
Oh! daffodils, there’s a lovely thought!
I wasn’t sure about Fatsia to begin with, but we have one right outside our French windows and the seedheads have been delighting me all winter. Not sure when I will be able to bear to cut them down.
Maybe it’s because my plants are in a pot that they seem to unbalance the plants, I think I should cut them all back soon.
I love those big round glass vases; but you are right that they are hard to fill and position. You created a lovely display and the Fatsia are wonderful. I can’t grow it so I am always interested to see how others use it in vase.
This vase isn’t very big, about goldfish bowl size. Fatsia is very tolerant of drought and shade in fact the only think it won’t take is full sun (in Italy). It will grow in sun in more northerly climes.
Christina her vase is divine. The Viburnum tinus is beautiful with its floral heads and the two flowers of the Fatsia japonica are beautiful. I love the Campani bottles and how the Lavandula lasts. I’m glad that the yellow saffron has blossomed: it’s beautiful. Greetings from Margarita.
Hello Margarita; it is lovely that the Lavender and Teucrium last well in a vase. If they didn’t last long I wouldn’t want to pick them from the garden and spoil the display there.
Indeed thank goodness, they are especially welcome in January and remind us that things are still alive. It is good to walk round and see what is going on, there is always a surprise.
It’s the surprises that keep us gardeners going.
I’ve been very tempted to try growing Viburnum tinus. Their water requirements are what’s put me off but, some 20+ years ago, I bought 3 small shrubs as a gift for a friend upon her purchase of a house in one of our inland valleys and those shrubs always look great, despite the fact that she’s as stingy with water as anyone I know and her summers are even hotter than mine. The challenge here might be limited to getting them properly established.
Best wishes for some pleasantly warm days this week, Christina!
Mine doesn’t receive any irrigation and is growing well after a slowish start but it was quite a large shrub when I planted it. As with all things in a dry climate, smaller is best when planting.
Very striking Christina. I think they look especially good in your campari bottles! Please share a photo of your crocuses soon – I am starved of colour with only grey skies and muddy brown earth all around me! 🙂
I took some photos this afternoon, I’ll post them tomorrow.
I like the updated vases, the look is simple, yet elegant. They remind me of 18th century prints.
Somehow a little restraint seems the right thing after the excesses of the festive season.
I really like those cool evergreens. Here there are C Tomasianus and the tiny dark purple irises, tho they are much eaten by the wildlife and battered by the rain!
The yellow Crocus looked very battered yesterday morning but when I photographed them in the afternoon they looked much better. I must look for the Iris reticulata but I fear that they have flowered for as many years as they will.
More elegant vases…the Fatsia has lovely structure. I saw one in full flower in the Bishop’s Palace in garden in Wells a few weeks ago, and it got me reconsidering whether to make room for one in my garden…to have such a magnificent evergreen in the middle of winter is a treasure indeed.
Yes, I think they are well worth the space plus they are actually very easy plants; some books say they are not hardy but they seem to be much tougher than that.
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