Don't be fooled. Inside this thin coating of sweetness is a fiery core of total insanity.

Monday, August 31, 2015

In a Vase on Monday....And Forevermore

A few garden bloggers that I follow participate faithfully in the "In a Vase on Monday" meme hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden  --  specifically, Ricki at Sprig to Twig and Kris at Late to the Garden Party.

Every so often I think it might be fun, or at the very least, interesting, to join in. But I find it hard to shake the conviction that I'll be taking flowers from an already paltry number blooming in my garden, and that I'll basically be crap at it. But on a recent garden walkabout I realized I might be able to make something work with all the dead stuff. I don't have to worry about keeping the stems in fresh water, or about matching or clashing colors (since everything is some shade of brown).

And if it looks like crap, I can blame it on the fact that everything is dead.

But if it looks good, I can keep it forever.

The first thing I had to do was buy a vase. I own a single bud vase. I found something I thought was appropriate at Fred Meyer. Except it's not a vase. It's a candle holder. But so what? I used it anyway, cause I liked the filigree-ish exterior, with its bare stem-like design. It has a glass insert, meant for holding a candle, that's not removable. But guess what? That glass insert worked brilliantly to hold the stems.

Then I just went around the garden with my secateurs, looking for dead stuff. I found plenty, given our harsh summer, and my laziness in deadheading. I knew I had to work quickly, and cut everything on Friday, because over the weekend we were going to get a big wind and rain storm, and everything I was planning to use would get beaten up or soaked.

I rejected a stem of Inula, because the lower part was still green. Same with a nicely curved stem of Liatris. Too much purple in that flower still. I considered using some dead stems from my red twig dogwood, that I cut and stuck in a vase a couple of years ago. But, Hello? Red. I used stems mostly in twos and threes and fives.

My requiem for summer

A little bit of everything

Cardoon flower

Ostrich fern and cardoon foliage

Cardoon flower with Kewpie doll hair

Phlomis has interesting tiered flowers

Bare daylily scapes remind me of bones or antlers

Oakleaf Hydrangea flower borders on orange, but not quite

A few hints of green in a twisted cardoon leaf

Once I placed this dried Eryngium flower, I had to be careful placing the rest -- they're very poky!

A single sinuous banana leaf at the back

I probably photographed this same banana leaf a few months ago for Foliage Followup

I like it. It's kind of ugly, but it's kind of beautiful too.

The boundaries which divide Life from Death are at best shadowy and vague. Who shall say where the one ends, and where the other begins?
-- Edgar Allan Poe

You should check out Cathy's In a Vase on Monday post here.