Monday is the day I join Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for her lovely meme. The title of today’s vase refers not only to where the photo was taken, but also to where I spent all day – working in the garden. It was wonderful! I saw the first bee. I saw the first crocus. I ache all over!
And I picked some snowdrops.
To fill out the vase I added a few Spring Snowflakes (Leucojum vernum), which also have a lovely name in German – March Bells (Märzglöckchen).
In addition, I still have some Hippeastrum flowering, including this beauty which is almost the same as the red one I posted a few weeks ago.
As it started to lean to one side I decided to cut it, and discoveed another two shoots coming.
As Juliet so famously declared in Shakespeare’s well-known play:
“What’s in a name? that which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet…”
Yes, we all (well, most of us) call our Amaryllis by the wrong name. Strictly speaking the bulbs we in cooler climates grow indoors in winter are Hippeastrums; the South American lily. And not Amaryllis, which is the African belladonna lily.
Hippeastrum hybrid “dunkelrot”
But I don’t think we should care too much about this error. As Celia Fisher writes in ‘The Golden Age of Flowers’,
‘When European hybrids were developed the original confusion about provenance intensified, while ordinary plant lovers blithely regard them all as amaryllis.’
Monday 11am, -9°C
I consider myself an ‘ordinary plant lover’. How about you?
Thank you to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting this lovely meme. Why not visit her to see what others are finding for their Monday vases/flower arrangements this week.
I am back in Germany now, and after a short break from blogging I am pleased to be joining Cathy at Rambling in the Garden with a vase (well, actually two) filled with delights from my garden.
On the left: A small pink Lilac Wonder, Jan Steen, Lucky Parrot, and Lilac Wonder again.
Centre top is unknown, and at the front is Aga Khan, a lovely bright double orange flower with a short stem, going well with the orange Princess Irene at the back. I think the pink parrot tulip on the right is Libretto, and the double white is called Gerard Dou.
The second vase below contains Purple Dream, the yellow Flashback, Green Star, White Triumphator, Spring Green and a clashing red Eyecatcher. A few remain nameless, but nonetheless gorgeous.
When I was asked to draw a flower as a child, I inevitably drew a tulip. Later, when asked what my favourite flower was, I would usually say tulips. No roses for me! Today I am still drawn to these beautiful and varied blooms. Aren’t they just fascinating?
On my return from the UK at the weekend I was amazed to find how far ahead Germany is already. With some very warm and sunny days recently the trees are more green than brown, the blackthorn blossom has been and gone and the tulips are in full force – many flowering earlier than usual so the combinations are a little over-the-top, but I love them!
However, it has turned very cold here again this week, and April is behaving badly as usual with wintry snow showers spoiling the intermittent sunshine. I did manage to catch the sun shining through a skylight in our hall though, creating the dramatic effect in the photos. Sometimes I wish I could paint…
I’ll leave you with a few pictures of the tulips outside, enjoying a drop of sunshine again after yet another snow flurry!
Before I show you my Monday vase this week, a brief update on the vote for the Amaryllis in my post An Amaryllis Winter just before Easter. Thank you for joining in the fun vote and leaving comments too!
And the winner is…
Closely followed by Lemon Star…
Actually the poll showed Lemon Star ahead, but according to the comments I think Chico won by a slim margin of two points. 🙂 They were my favourites too and I hope to grow these two again next year.
So, now to my vase, as I join Cathy at Rambling in the Garden – along with many other vase creators around the world – in collecting materials from my garden to bring into the house every Monday.
As you can see, I couldn’t NOT use my forsythia vase again. But this week I added some other golds to go with the Forsythia itself, which finally opened outdoors last Thursday after our first really warm day of the year.
(Since then we have had several hot days, over 20°C!)
I’m afraid I have forgotten the names of the daffodils, but I think they don’t mind just being called “Daff”…
I think this is Tulipa kaufmanniana ‘Heart’s Delight’.
I love the slight pink tinge around the tips of the petals, which is more prominent on those growing in partial shade.
I also included some Euphorbia myrsinites, some of my yellow Hellebore flowers (‘Frühlingssonne’) which are now going over, and a couple of daffodils.
You can click on any image to enlarge them.
So April has got off to a good start with warmth and sunshine. I do hope it continues, but with some gentle rain overnight of course! 😉
Last winter and spring, after seeing some gorgeous blooms on various blogs, I made a note to myself to order plenty of Amaryllis/Hippeastrum to see me through the following winter. I ended up with eight different bulbs, only one of which failed to flower (called ‘White Christmas’, of which we all dream of in vain 😉 ).
They were all planted in light compost with a little grit, in fairly small pots, and with a third to a half of the bulb showing above the soil. From December to March I had at least one in flower constantly. Some of them needed minimal support as they started to go over, but most were sturdy enough to stay standing on their own. Here is a summary of which ones I grew and how they flowered.
First of all, the record-breaking ‘Tres Chic‘: planted on 4th November and flowering by 15th December…
(It must have taken me by surprise, as I failed to take a decent photo of it!)
It was a lovely bright, festive red with a white centre, and it flowered for about two and a half weeks.
The next one to flower was ‘Chico‘. Planted on 9th October, Chico flowered on 27th December, and then again on 19th January. This was quite possibly my favourite. Click on any image to enlarge…
I just loved the way the petals curled upwards, and the shades of pink and green were very delicate. I will definitely try and grow this one again.
In early January Chico was accompanied by ‘Apple Blossom‘…
This was a much more traditional-style Amaryllis: frilly pink and white flowers, with pretty markings on the petals. It was planted on 25th November and flowered on 7th January. There must have been about seven flowers on this one stalk – stunning.
In January another more unusual one flowered: ‘Evergreen‘…
This was such a lovely pale creamy green, and lasted extremely well too. It was planted on 9th October and flowered on 16th January. There was something very classical about this one, and it reminded me very much of oriental lilies.
My windowsills were now getting a little overcrowded, as two days later, on 18th January, ‘Rosy Star‘ joined the party.
This was a simple flower – not as fussy as Apple Blossom – and rather pinker than the photos show. It was pretty, but not mind-blowing. Still, very welcome in the darkest month of the year!
In February ‘Lemon Star‘ finally opened and put on a beautiful display for several weeks – it flowered on two stalks simulataneously and was the firm favourite of my Man of Many Talents. I planted this one on 25th November and its flowers opened on the 10th and 18th of February.
It looked very lemony. In fact I kept thinking if I sniff it, it might even smell of lemons! (It didn’t though.) This was a nice light colour to welcome spring and the longer hours of daylight. This one will also go on my list for next year too.
Around the same time ‘Blossom Peacock‘ opened too. This was planted on 22nd December and flowered on 6th February and again on 6th March. It was the last one, cut down only last week.
As you can see from the planting and flowering dates there is no way of telling when they will flower – some needed three months, while others needed only four to six weeks. I kept all of the bulbs almost dry and rather cool until they started shooting. Then they need only a little water and a warmer spot to flower.
Do you grow Amaryllis? Do you have any particular favourites? Or do you hate them?! I thought it would be interesting and fun to ask you to vote for your favourite from those that I grew. I will then tell you the results next week. Thanks, and a have a great Easter weekend! 🙂
A thin layer of snow and ice has enveloped the garden. And as I have seen from recent posts from the UK we are not the only ones!
As I write, the sun is shining but the temperature remains below freezing. This means the chances of finding anything for a Monday vase are extremely slim – a few frozen hellebore buds and violas at best. So in order to join in Cathy’s meme again this week (Rambling in the Garden) I thought I’d cheat a little and show you an indoor plant in a pot, rather than a vase.
Like ‘Chico’, which I showed you here a couple of weeks ago, ‘Evergreen’ is not what most people expect of an Amaryllis. It is elegant and statuesque, a still-life botanical painting…
And yet you could argue it is also slightly brash, with a waxy artificial look to it…
In any case, I like it for its fresh yellowish green, while the world around me is currently lacking colour.
Do go and visit Cathy and see if anyone else around the world has been able to produce flowers for a vase this Monday.