Thursday, January 15, 2015

IN A VASE - practice makes perfect

In two weeks we will be hosting our annual winter party, a tradition my husband and I started three years ago when we moved to frigid but beautiful Winnipeg.  Since I am going to try something new with the flower arrangements this year, I thought it would behoove me to practice. This might sound a little over-the-top at first, but who does not want fresh flowers in their home, practice or no practice?

Over the winter I collected some floral knick-knacks and fake flowers and when it came time to see what they looked like on display it occurred to me that they might in fact help turn a regular bunch of flowers into my own floral displays if I combined them with fresh flowers.

Apologies, but I just did not have the energy to move this where there was a less busy background.  This vase will be in the centre of a room for the party which means its shape will have to change so its height is in the centre rather than at the back, but these will remain the materials I will use in this vase. 

I am uncertain about the height of the coils, should they be cut back a few inches so they do not tower so high above the flowers?  Or should they be cut back more severely, hiding their sticks making it appear as if they are sprouting up like flowers from a Dr. Seus book?

Let me know what you think.

The strongly scented Asiatic lilies, (the only real flowers in the vase), will have to be white of course since for our annual winter party there is a strict white dress code.

In order to keep the wooden sticks dry I have placed the real flowers in a beaker of water that sits discreetly in the vase which is thankfully still easily watered from above without having to remove a thing.

This vase is quite slim and therefore more difficult to work with since it wants to push all the blooms out its crowded centre.
Here again the lilies are the only real plant along with some white decorative berries and some silk flowers.

I have realize that I will need to find something for the under story so this 'practice' is definitely paying off.

I am not certain how I feel about mixing in the silk flowers...berries, silver pine cones and the like are definitely okay since they are clearly decorative, but what about the silk flowers that are designed to deceive, do they help to turn this into something special for the party, or do they cheapen it? 

I am undecided so please be free with your advice.


Tuesday, December 09, 2014


This is a follow up on some plants I guerrilla gardened at the Manitoba cottage in 2012

The daylilies are coming back well and continuing to bloom each year.

The Oriental Lilies also planted here get eaten by the deer each year, though they survived long enough for a few photographs in 2013. The daffodils have not done well in this sandy soil over these past two cold winters.

Daylilies planted further down the road, away from the cottage, have not fared as well. 
Being within reach of the hose makes all of the difference.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

SWITCH-A-ROO - hardy geranium, lamium, foxglove

When I saw how beautifully the hardy geranium in my corporate guerrilla garden did this summer I could not help but to want the same thing for the more than dozen I planted in my Monet Garden at home that have not been able to reach such fantastical heights of blooming.

Instead they bloomed just barely enough to justify staying in this semi-shaded location while they wait to be ravaged by the deer. 

So I moved them further into the yard, along the edge of the Sun Garden, where for the last two years I have used Nasturtium to create a low-growing border along the driveway.  Yes, the deer still wander into the yard that far to snack, but at least the geraniums will get more sun and will not be as completely exposed.

One more addition of purple into the Sun Garden as I embrace the shift away from my strictly colour-coded gardens.

In place of the Hardy Geranium I will transplant a portion of the Lamium that has been doing so incredibly well.  It will cover the narrow strip alongside the sidewalk, but stop where the garden widens alongside the driveway since I have already established a carpet of Forget-Me-Nots there.

Major transplants tend to create a domino effect in the garden; filling the hole cleft by the Lamium are the Foxglove from alongside our home, which have had to be transplanted due to our basement construction.  

Here the domino effect ends because the space the Foxglove came from will not be ready to plant again until spring, but when the ground thaws and I am able to start the post-construction recreation of my gardens, this never-ending cycle of transplanting will begin anew.

Sharing with Outdoor Wednesday & Wildflower Wednesday