In a Vase on Monday: Persicaria et al

My vase this Monday includes three of the four Persicarias in my garden, and I intended to stop at three plants…. but as usual I was tempted to add a bit of this and a few of those and in the end it became quite a full vase! The vase is probably not actually a vase, but it caught my eye while I was at the garden centre looking for garlic bulbs.🙂 I placed a smaller vase inside it.


On the left you can see the leaves and the white flowers of Persicaria Red Dragon. The flowers are tiny, but incredibly beautiful, with little black/deep purple spots on the petals…


In the background of the above picture you can see the Persicaria Firetail, which I have used frequently in vases – it lasts very well. The third Persicaria I used is called Lance Corporal and is quite different to the others as the flowers are barely visible, but their scarlet colour lights up the long stems along which they are placed. Below, one stem is clear on the right, next to the Pennisetum.


Lots of Heuchera flowers, a dried fennel seed head and two cactus Zinnias were also added, along with some Cosmos which is still flowering despite the cool nights and damp weather. (That blue sky we had last week sadly disappeared over the weekend.)


I also cut a few leaves of the Ricinus (on the right in the next photo), which is rebelling at the cooler temperatures… it has withstood cool nights for a couple of weeks now, but doesn’t like the shorter days.


I took a deep breath and snipped off one of the large Crocosmia seed heads too, to complement the orange zinnia.


Well, for the first week of October I am impressed with what my garden still has to offer me. I wonder what you could put in a vase this Monday. Do visit our host, Cathy at Rambling in the Garden, and why not join in too!

The Tuesday View: 27th September 2016

This week I can see many changes in the view as autumn gets a grip… the cooler nights have stopped fresh growth and much of the foliage is changing to its autumn colours. (The acer in the background is a lovely pale orange at the moment.)


In the above photo I tried to get exactly the same angle as last week’s, standing on the balcony and zooming in on the rockery. By lunchtime, most of the sun has gone from the sloping southern part; with the sun already much lower in the sky it is shaded by our fir trees.

The focus this week is the pink rose again, now that the red one is taking a break, but the lilac aster between the two roses is also calling modestly for a little attention…


Can you see it? I’ll get a little closer…


I am not sure of its name, but never mind.


I can still admire it!

And finally this is one of the smaller sedums planted in the rockery this spring – Sedum telephium ‘Herbstfreude’ (Autumn Joy), which says it all really…


As I feature this same view each week to watch the changes throughout the year, I would be pleased if anyone else wants to join in. Please share by adding a link in the comments.🙂


Have a great week!

In a Vase on Monday: Perfectly Pink

Walking around my garden choosing flowers for a vase was so enjoyable yesterday morning… the sun was really warm, the sky blue, the bees were humming… and there was a delicious smell of lemon cake from my kitchen, wafting across the patio! (What more could you ask for!)


All these fabulous shades of pink, with my pink rose flowering again in the background, didn’t really need pepping up at all. But I added some bright orange Physalis alkekengi anyway. Just because.


And with the cooler nights I wanted to at least once see how the seedheads of the Castor Bean Plant (Ricinus communis) hold up in a vase. I like the way they look with the Sedum and pink Asters (Alma Pötschke). You can just about see them here in the background…


The pink anemone you can see in the above photo is ‘Serenade’, while in the photo below the shy white anemone ‘Honorine Jobert’ is peeping out from under the Sedum. I have fallen hard for both of them, as they have been flowering for several weeks now and are still looking so fresh.


And next to the white anemone this gorgeous pink Cosmos took me by surprise a few days ago as it had not flowered until then. It must be from a packet called ‘Double Click’, but I am not sure if that name is correct so any help would be appreciated in identifying it!


Of course the reddish pink Persicaria ‘Firetail’ had to be included, along with a single pink rose, a lilac aster, some grasses, a few Cosmos ‘Candy Stripe’, some Zebra grass, and a gorgeous peachy pink cactus zinnia…


Cathy’s Monday meme has made me look at my garden in a new and refreshing way, inspiring me to grow different annuals such as zinnias, and making me realise how much the garden can give at any time of year. Just as autumn has officially begun, and as I try to suppress any stray thoughts of grey winter days, my order for autumn bulbs and Amaryllis for my winter windowsills has arrived. Plenty of material for future vases! Thank you to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting, and to all the other contributors for sharing their vases every week too.

Happy autumn!


The Tuesday View: 20th September 2016

I waited for the sun in vain today, so my weekly view of the rockery is a little triste. Three days of rain made the Perovskia and grasses hang a bit, but they are already starting to dry out and perk up. It looks so different to last week. Autumn is definitely here!


The bees were clinging to the flowers and barely flying in this cool grey weather. There is still plenty for those paying a visit though.

I am still amazed at this Polygonum/Persicaria (‘Firetail’), which flowers for so long no matter what the weather does.


With the Gaura and pink rose this is a good spot to focus on again today.


If you would like to join in showing a weekly view of one spot in your garden, do leave a link below and share!

In a Vase on Monday: A Happy Anniversary!

Yesterday was the anniversary of my first post on Words and Herbs… FIVE years ago! We went for a walk in the rain and remembered getting caught in a vicious hailstorm with the dogs almost five years ago too… doesn’t time fly!

The garden is looking rather soggy after three days of almost non-stop rain, but I took advantage of a brief interval in the rain to pick some flowers for today’s vase, so that I can join Cathy again at Rambling in the Garden for her inspiring meme.


The photos had to be taken indoors, with the help of some lamps. Yes, when the sun fails to shine the light is most definitely fading now – autumn is noticeably on the doorstep. But the sedums are at their best, and the grasses are glorious. Welcome autumn – come in and have a cup of tea!


The contents of my teapot ‘vase’ this week include various sedums, a pink ‘The Fairy’ rose, my beautiful rose ‘Gertrude Jekyll’ which smells delicious, some Verbena bonariensis, Cosmos ‘Candy Stripe’, a peachy pink Zinnia, some pink asters ‘Alma Pötschke’, a Heuchera flower, a ‘Cheyenne Spirit’ Echinacea, some peony foliage and a few sprigs of Miscanthus.


Has autumn knocked on your door yet?

Have a lovely week!



The Tuesday View: 13th September 2016

September is the month when I notice the light changing in the garden most…. within a matter of days the evening sun no longer touches my rockery shown in these weekly views. Tall trees and the hills beyond our garden mean that as the sun gets lower parts of the garden sink into shadow in the afternoon. Today I took a couple of long shots earlier in the day…

I could see the long shadows creeping across the lower part even then…


And in the evening, at around 7 pm, the sun had almost disappeared below the trees at the end of the garden, filtering just a little golden light onto the top of the rockery…


I think this photo looks quite autumny because of the light, although temperatures are high (30°C) and the plants are still very much in summer mode. I wish I could hold on to this weather, this view and the atmosphere this seasonal change brings for another 6 weeks or so! But then there will certainly be something new and exciting catching my eye next week.🙂

Please join me in showing a shot of a single view of your garden each week, following the subtle as well as the dramatic changes the seasons bring. These views are, for me, enlightening.

Thanks for visiting and have a lovely week!


In a Vase on Monday: Golden

The extended summer warmth means I still have plenty of flowers for cutting without worrying about more buds opening. With another heatwave with temperatures of 30°C and above, September is turning out to be a golden month… hence the title for this week’s Monday vase, as I join Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for her weekly meme.


The yellow and orange Cosmos ‘Brightness Mixed’ and ‘Sulphureus’ have done well again this year. The creamy yellow Cosmos ‘Xanthos’ is also very pretty and has produced lots of flowers. However, I find they don’t last as long both on the plant and in a vase, and deadheading is made tricky as lots of buds cluster together. The vase also contains Tithonia and Sunflower ‘Valentine’, and a couple of yellow Marigolds too.

The taller vase has one of my white cleome at the centre, from seed collected from last year’s plants. A big success, but I have ordered some pink ones for next spring as well.


I added Cosmos ‘Purity’ and a pinky Cosmos ‘Candy Stripe’, as well as some pink and orange Zinnias from a mixed seed packet. All have thrived in large pots in front of our living room window, creating a pretty panorama view! The Zinnias are so intricate…


I really don’t know why I have only discovered zinnias in the last couple of years!

My seeds for next spring and a few plants for autumn planting are already ordered, and the annual tidy up can wait until the end of October, allowing me to enjoy the rest of this month and the fine weather with very little to do except dead heading.😀

Have a lovely week!