In a Vase on Monday: Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to all of you!

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I am joining the now famous Monday meme hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden: A single Amaryllis flower (Lemon Star) in a cocktail glass seemed to capture the spirit of New Year yesterday. The accompanying mini Sekt bottle is empty…. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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I hope you had a lovely break over Christmas and are refreshed and ready to start the new gardening year with optimism. It is still frozen here, with a light sprinkling of snow, so my garden will be slumbering a little longer.

Have a good week and a good start to the new year 2017!

In a Vase on Monday: Lemon Star

When I walked into my dining room this morning I knew something was not quite right. It was only later, while having breakfast, that I noticed that the first of my Amaryllis (Hippeastrum) to flower this winter was bent over at a dangerous angle threatening to uproot the bulb and put the second bud at risk. So I cut it immediately and put it in a tall vase. Then I realised it is not only Boxing Day, but also Monday – serendipity! I have a vase to share with you after all!

‘Lemon Star’

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A neighbour gave me this bunch of red Amaryllis which are also lovely and cheerful on my windowsill.

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Do take a look at some of the other festive vases posted for Cathy’s meme on Rambling in the Garden.

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In a Vase on Monday: Happy Halloween!

I wanted to find something spooky this week for a Halloween vase, as I join Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for her weekly meme…

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No, not spooky enough. Let’s have another try…

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Aah, now that’s better! The seed heads of the Clematis tangutica are just like little spiders…

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or a bit ghostly, like the hair of a very very VERY old person…

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And with some slightly creepy seed heads of Anemone japonica, the almost black Crocosmia and Echinacea, and the bright orange Physalis alkekengi I hope I managed to capture the ‘spirit’ of the season!

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The pumpkin was a present from a friend, and the butternut will be made into butternut ‘steaks’ this week (I will post a recipe soon!). Last week I called my fern ‘toffee’ coloured, but I think ‘butternut’ is probably an even closer description.

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Other ingredients to my vase were some orangey pink Epimedium foliage and a Sedum flower. Did you know Sedums were also renamed? (Actually some time ago but I was slow to catch on!) And of course the new name is much longer and more difficult to pronounce… ‘hylotelephium’. And at the front is the reddish pink seed head of the Ricinus communis that I had to cut down this week – the cold and damp had got to it, but it had lasted so well.

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I won’t be celebrating Halloween myself, but for all of you who are…

Have a wonderful spooky Halloween!

๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

In a Vase on Monday: Sea Fever

A visit to the seaside last week was a real delight – here in Bavaria we are pretty much landlocked, so the smell of the sea air and the sight of such a huge sky, the glittering sea and the long horizon were quite magical. Memories of childhood holidays on the North Norfolk coast have been flooding back since, so now that I am back home I thought my Monday vase should adopt the seaside theme…

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“I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky”

(from Sea Fever by John Masefield)

Vase5th2Cosmos Xanthos, Scabiosa ochroleuca, Succisella inflexa, Miscanthus, Tanacetum (Feverfew), and Ceratostigma (Leadwort).

Vase5th4Cosmos Purity, Caryopteris, Feverfew, white Lavender, and lilac Aster.

Vase5th7Zinnia, Tithonia and Echinacea ‘Cheyenne Spirit’

“I must go down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide

Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied…”

from Sea Fever by John Masefield (Read the whole poem here)

The two little vases and the beach hut were found in a gift shop next to Blakeney Quay, and the windmills possibly came from the same shop many years earlier! The shells were collected on Norfolk beaches over the past years as well. ๐Ÿ˜€

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I am joining Cathy at Rambling in the Garden once again for her Monday meme. Do visit her to see her rich choice of flowers this week, as well as all the other vases linked in from around the world!

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Have a good week!

The Tuesday View: 30th August 2016

I am still in the UK this Tuesday – ย so before you start wondering, this week’s view is a little different!

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The red plant in the centre is, I believe, the beautiful Lobelia cardinalis that Frank featured in his post last Thursday.ย The plants at the back of this border must be almost three metres tall!

The Lobelia is in this border too…

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These photos were taken on Monday at Coton Manor Gardens in Northamptonshire – a stone’s throw from my parents’ home.

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The borders are beautifully kept and I always think they look fabulous in late summer. (The Spring gardens are, however, also quite lovely.)

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Some of the planting combinations in this traditional English garden are just stunning. Look at this pale orange Dahlia, pink Echinacea, and the purple Asters behind.

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If you would like to join me in sharing a single view of your garden each week to follow the changes across the seasons, please leave a link in the comments below so we can all take pleasure in it. I will be back to my familiar view next week, where my rockery may just possibly be showing some signs of stress as a heatwave continues for the second week in Bavaria.

Have a good week everyone!

In a Vase on Monday: Sugar and Lemons

Tomorrow is Pancake Day in the UK, and although the tradition of eating thin crepe-style pancakes on Shrove Tuesday does not seem to exist anywhere else in the world I have always made them wherever I have been – even when I lived in Japan I had a pancake party!

The traditional topping for these pancakes is lemon juice and sugar. Yes, there are plenty of other things you can put on your pancake, but not on Pancake Day. You can have maple syrup, nutella, bananas, etc any time of year. But tomorrow it’s simply lemon juice and sugar; the inspiration for the title for my vase this week…

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Every Monday I join Cathy at Rambling in the Garden with her lovely meme where we are asked to find something from our garden and bring it indoors. Two days ago my first golden (lemony) crocus opened (Yippee!), so I knew I would have to bring some indoors.

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The tiniest ‘vase’ I could find was a miniature salt sellar, and since I had two I decided to pick a few (sugary) snowdrops too, which also immediately opened once brought into the warm house. There are only a few – most are still too small to pick.

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But these are not the only flowers I have this week. About three weeks ago I cut some Ribes sanguineum, remembering that when it is forced the normally deep pinky red flowers are white. In the course of the last week they have opened…

And another Amaryllis opened two days ago too – Amaryllis ‘Blossom Peacock’. A real beauty with a lovely straight stem.

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I shall do a round-up of all my Amaryllis/Hippeastrums once they have all flowered. So far I have had one or two flowering constantly since November. ๐Ÿ™‚

Until Friday it had rained practically all week, so having flowers indoors is very cheering. I am looking forward to seeing a few more of my spring bulbs emerge this week, but first I am looking forward to my pancakes tomorrow. What will you have on yours? Sugar and lemon juice?

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