In A Vase On Monday – Vintage Silver

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Welcome to ‘In A Vase On Monday’ when I am linking up with Cathy at Rambling In The Garden to share a vase of flowers picked from my garden every Monday.

Christmas has officially started in our house now – our American family are with us, I have been to see The Messiah at the Cathedral, The Snowman at the Peacock Theatre in London and hosted afternoon tea for a large family gathering. The tree is up, the wood burner is on and I am preparing to start wrapping presents this week. Today I wanted to make a few seasonal posies from the garden to add to the festive decorations.

Vintage-Silver-Vase-Arrangement

This time last year I had Christmas roses (helleborus niger) in flower, but I am still waiting for these lovely white flowers, which you can see in my new seasonal header taken from a photo from year, to arrive. There are plenty of buds but no flowers – perhaps the warm late autumn has confused them. Fortunately I have a white spray chrysanthemum still flowering in the greenhouse, which filled the gap beautifully.

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I have used three small vintage style antiqued silver vases, with matching tea lights and my favourite Christmas birds as a windowsill display.

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I need to check the name of this chrysanthemum for you (as I write it is too dark to venture out to the greenhouse), as it is certainly one I would recommend for late flowering – it only came into flower at the start of December.

Having grown greenhouse chrysanthemums for the second year now I am ready to refine my ordering for next season. I loved the burnt oranges and deep pinks in the autumn (around October time), but as December approached I started to crave more white flowers to go with the winter palette of greens.

Next year I am going to order only white varieties for the late chrysanthemums that flower in mid November and December and keep the autumnal colours to mid flowering varieties, so that I can have these colours a little earlier in October. This year I ordered all late flowering varieties of which only two were white.

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Readers who have been with me since last year will know how much I love to use twigs in my winter arrangements. Today I have used twigs cut from a philadelphus bush, which still have their seed heads attached.

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I also have my first viburnum tinus berries – I planted a couple of bushes of viburnum  tinus ‘Eve Price’ a few years ago and this is the first time the beautiful berries that I have admired in florists shops have appeared in my garden.

Vintage-Silver-Vase-Arrangement

The small pink and white flowers and green leaves are from viburnum tinus ‘Gwenillian’ and ‘French White’

Vintage-Silver-Vase-Arrangement

I hope you have enjoyed this weeks ‘In A Vase On Monday’ and I apologise for failing to produce anything last week – I was full of good intentions but the days just slipped through my fingers. Next week is the week of Christmas and we have a pantomime booked, carol services to attend and a rather large turkey to eat. Then it is on to hastily packing our bags for our annual post Christmas trip to the Alps  – where there is rather worryingly little snow at the moment. I am keeping my fingers crossed for a cold snap as I do love to be there when it is snowing.

Time permitting I will be back with another festive vase from the garden next Monday. In the meantime I hope you will pop over to Cathy’s blog to see what she and the others have made this week.

 

A Visit To The Covent Garden Flower Market

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I am conscious that I have been promising to share my photos from my recent trip to the Covent Garden Flower Market for a few weeks now – sometimes life gets overcomplicated and plans go awry, which is what has happened with my blogging timetable in recent weeks. I thought these photos would make a nice weekend treat, so I have finally found time to pull them together!

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The Covent Garden Flower Market is a destination I have dreamt of visiting for a long time and it did not disappoint! It is enormous – a huge arena filled with flowery treats.

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For a gardener used to arranging with her own seasonal flowers the vast array of blooms was quite daunting – all the seasons seemed to be represented at once under that vast roof.

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Whilst I had expected oodles of flowers to choose from, what I had not expected was the vast range of other products available – perennials, potted orchids, topiary, containers – the list was never ending.

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The availability of new season flowers was also breathtaking – it was not even December and there were ranunculus, anemones and tulips.

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We must have walked around the site four or five times before making our choices. I was very tempted by the beautiful white ranunculus, but in the end I opted for these amazing glittery festive twigs and a very large wrap of gypsophila.

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Here is our lovely host Belinda Gray of The Grower, who organised a truly memorable and special London trip for us.

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Finally, this is where the gypsophila appeared on a festive wreath, which is still hanging on my front door!

Gypsophilia-Wreath

And a couple of mini wreaths to add to the atmosphere.

Gypsophilia-Wreath

In conclusion, it was quite an eye opening experience to see the real world of florists at work. Apart from the odd trip to the flower stall on our local market I do restrict myself very much to what I can grow in the garden. Seeing all those different flowers did make me feel a little jealous of the florists who can shop there regularly and have all that variety at their fingertips.

On balance, however, just as I like to eat seasonally, I do love to work with my flowers as they appear in their seasons. A flower world where tulips are in season before Christmas and peonies are available in April is not for me – right now I am just looking forward to the snowdrops!!

In A Vase On Monday

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A quick note tonight to say that I have been away for two days and just got home – too late to do any arranging or photographing.

Gypsophilia Wreath

I will be back tomorrow with a late vase. For now I am sharing a photo pf the gypsophila wreath I have made for our front door. The flowers are from the Covent Garden Flower Market, so do not count, but the wreath is homemade and festive – just right for a December post.

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