In A Vase on Monday – Mid Spring Delights

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My Vase on Monday has been through a couple of guises today.  I wanted to feature the Ballerina Tulips which are really the only tulips I have.  They grow in the front garden so escaped the notice of the badger in past years – the badger hasn’t worked out how to get to the front of the house.  They are a form of tulip which will naturalise and they seem to be doing this.  The first incarnation of my vase featured a smoked Venetian glass vase with the orange tulips, some Berginia ‘Bressingham White’, Sweet Cicely and the new red orange foliage of my neighbour’s Photinia (it grows over the fence).

Anyway, looking at the vase on my mantlepiece it become quickly obvious that it just didn’t work.  The Photinia foliage was too strong and too dominant and although it was similar to the orange of the tulips it detracted from the flowers rather than showcasing them.  A re-think was needed.  The vase had to go as it was a narrow necked vase and I wanted to add more and the Photinia foliage was scraped.


Instead I added some small ‘Jan Reus’ tulips which have survived in the back garden and reflowered for a number of years but as happens when you leave tulips in the ground the flowers can become smaller; I think I prefer the smaller flowers.  I also added Lunaria ‘Chedglow’ and replaced the foliage with Epimedium foliage which I think works well as the bronzing in the leaves works with the orange flowers.  I like the way the ‘Jan Reus’ tulips pick up on the centre of the Bergina flowers which also have a hint of orange in the middle.  Of course it has all ended up in a very ordinary glass vase but I think that adds to its charm and simplicity.

For more Vases on Monday ramble over to Cathy’s and check our her vase and others (links in comments box)

18 Comments on “In A Vase on Monday – Mid Spring Delights

  1. Helen this is quite a lovely vase. I can see why you wanted to showcase these tulips and I love the little purple tulips as they go perfectly as does the Bergenia….but the addition of the Epimedium foliage really does bring it all together.

  2. Your tulips are gorgeous, and I can almost smell how sweetly your arrangement perfumes the air. Your Epimedium is almost as striking as the tulips, and I love the movement it gives to your arrangement. Lovely….

  3. What an elegant result, Helen – those Ballerina are real primadonnas, aren’t they? I have used epimedium foliage in a vase before and it lasts really well and is nice and stiff so stands up nicely – with the young foliage and a handful of flowers it is even better. Very lovely – and I am intrigued by the Lunaria Chedglow – is that the purple flower? ps is that a genuine Vettriano on the wall….? 😉

    • The Lunaria is indeed a deep purple. I got the seed from Avon Bulbs last May, the plants were selling like hot cakes at Malvern. I think it’s they bred it.
      An original Vetriano, as if!!!

  4. You are clever at this, Helen. I am amazed how well the Epimedium works – I would never think to use it in a vase but the leaves seem to float around the flowers and the colour is perfect. Gorgeous.

    • Hi Janna
      Thanks, flower arranging is something I have no experience of. Maybe my lack of experience or knowledge means I look at plants for arranging differently, it doesn’t always work. I tried bamboo once and the leaves just curled up!

  5. Oooo – so pretty! The whole vase is absolutely stunning, and the bright orange of your tulips definitely gives it a major “wow factor.” It seems you have done this flower-arranging thing a time or two before 😉

  6. ‘Ballerina’ are wonderful tulips and they last longer than some in flower, mine reliably all came back for their second year. I like the reworked arrangement, the colours and forms all work really well together. BTW I don’t think the other tulip is Jan Reus because that is dark red not purple.

    • Hi Christina
      The possible Jan Reus is a dark red, it looks more purple in the photo. I have some larger ones and they are very red. I don’t remember planting any other tulips that sort of colour as last time I planted tulips I was going through a pink fluffy phase!
      My ballerina are in their 3rd year and doing well, not diminishing in size or flower so hopefully yours will do well

    • Because the summers are very dry here almost all my tulips naturalise. Like you I don’t mind if they do eventually have slightly smaller flowers Negrita now have 4 or 5 flowers from one bulb and the flowers are smaller but in the garden context I like them.

  7. An most attractive vase of flowers Helen. I like the flowing effect that the epimedium foliage adds as well as the way it picks up on the colour of the ‘Ballerina’ tulips. I’m surprised that you picked it 🙂 I included a solitary flower head of ‘Chedglow’ in my vase this week although I worried about depriving the butterflies.

Please feel free to leave comments as its always lovely to get feedback. I try to respond to comments as much as possible but sometimes life and work get in the way but I will do my best to respond especially if your comment is a question.

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