In a Vase on Monday: Floats My Boat

IMG_1417Putting together today’s vase was a doddle compared to photographing it without including my reflection! As always, there was a chain of thought in the process, beginning with the hellebores which along with snowdrops are currently the brightest stars in the garden galaxy. Knowing they don’t last long in water when picked with their stems I decided to take just the heads – one from every hellebore that is flowering but excluding H niger which is past its best and the first flower just discovered today on H Harvington Double Yellow. There are more to come, but today’s trawl included 10 different hellebores although in the end I left out a pure white specimen as she was so much bigger than the others and would have dominated the vase as well as taking up too much space.

IMG_1423The concept of floating hellebore heads lead to the ‘float my boat’ title and a search for suitable boat props. The Golfer has various boats gathering dust around the house but they don’t float for me, so when I chanced on the three shell sampans amongst my Chinese knick-knacks the decision was made – and lead on to the other oriental props. Oriental props demanded a vaguely oriental vase, but shallow and wide enough to hold all the hellebores – it had me stumped for a little while but in the end an old wooden sieve was perfect to hold a bowl of water for the flowers and looks sufficiently Chinese.

IMG_1419I actively look forward to this challenge that I set myself and now have the pleasure of enjoying the individual beauty of these hellebores at close quarters for several days. Having others join in has upped my game – and made it an even more enjoyable and stimulating experience. If you would like to join in, post your own vase (things from your garden, or found when out and about) and leave a link to this post, and vice versa – as always you would be most welcome, whether on a regular or sporadic basis.


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31 Responses to In a Vase on Monday: Floats My Boat

  1. croftgarden says:

    Beautiful arrangement.
    I’m not going to cheat and use flowers from the polytunnel, so my goal is to join your meme before Easter!

  2. pbmgarden says:

    Cathy, I love the way you set up such a strong, evocative mood for this week’s post. The results are gorgeous and very effective all around. You have some lovely hellebores and this makes a great presentation to highlight them. My contribution today includes some hellebores also. (I’m visiting a hellebore farm in a couple of weeks and hope to find some interesting ones to add to my garden.) Thanks for hosting! Susie

    • Cathy says:

      I find I am excited to see what other people have posted when they add their link, Susie – but you have given me a little clue this time. Thank you for your comments – as most weeks, it just seemed to come together once I got going. Thanks for joining in – and hope you find some new beauties at that intriguing-sounding hellebore farm!

  3. Chloris says:

    What wonderful Hellebores you have and so beautifully displayed. This is the best way to show them so you can look down on their little faces. I love your Chinese theme.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Chloris – flaoting them is not something I have done before although I have seen other people’s pictures, but I am so pleased to have them at close quarters like this. When I rambled later there were a couple of others that could have been included (including H argutifolius) but I avoided those that have only one or two open flowers.

  4. Annette says:

    Like, like, like!!! How beautiful, Cathy, and very evocative too. There’s no better way to display hellebores, is there. Can’t join you this week, shall try again next monday. PS: I wouldn’t have minded your reflection by the way πŸ˜‰

  5. Sarah says:

    No post but I do have 2 types of dahlias – one starting yellow in the middle and turning orange then purple on the tips of the petals and another a bright pink spiky thing plonked happily in a little union jack jug sitting next to me as I type! Love your hellebores…. πŸ™‚

    • Cathy says:

      That sounds an intriguingly quirky combination and that first dahlia seems to be undergoing an identity crisis – perhaps you could just have posted a picture…? πŸ˜‰

  6. Reblogged this on digwithdorris and commented:
    Other Hellobores in a vase on Monday

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  8. Julie says:

    Hi Cathy – better late than never! I have been in quite a rush all day & wondered if I would get to this tonight. I love the way you have displayed these hellebores – it is so good to see their beautiful faces clearly and you will have the pleasure of them for quite a few days yet! Well done as ever on your props – they always add such a lot to your post. Are your hellebores all named varieties?

    You can find my contrition today at

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Julie -about two thirds of them are named varieties, although I realised when I checked labels today that the nice dark double one is just labelled ‘Ashwood Double Hybrid’ which is a shame but I suppose if they are so promiscuous they are going to cross-pollinate and naming could be difficult if they are grown from seed

  9. Anna says:

    Beautiful floating hellebores Cathy. I particularly like the one at 5 o’clock. I have a similar little Chinese vase with a stopper πŸ™‚

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Anna – that is the Ashwood Double Hybrid that I just mentioned to Julie and not a very helpful name. The little Chinese bottles are for perfume I discovered, after having had one of them for some time.

  10. Jane Brewer says:

    I didn’t know hellebores could be so beautiful!

    • Cathy says:

      Hi Jane – the way they grow most of the flowers hang shyly downwards, so this is a good way of showing off their beauty. The differences in shade and markings are endless – so yes, very beautiful πŸ™‚

  11. aneye4detail says:

    Cathy: I have seen your name and blog and the “In a Vase on Monday” over at Julie’s Peonies and Posies…and then came to realize the Susie at pbm lives very near me, and we met last spring…so here I am! My posting is actually from last Friday as I do a “Friday Flowers” almost every week. And this one seems so appropriate! I’ll be back soon, although we are off to Savannah for five days the end of this week. Here’s the post:

    • Cathy says:

      Oh, how lovely to have you (is it Libby?) joining in – and your link mentions hellebores so I know your vase will be lovely and I am off to have a look at it now! Enjoy your break πŸ™‚

  12. That’s beautiful Cathy. One day I too will have 10 hellebores to choose from! Love the colours you have. Have seen hellebore flowers floating in glass but yours has more character.

    • Cathy says:

      Thought I had replied to this – apologies! Thanks for the kind words, and let’s hope your hellebore(s) settle(s) and get established. I suppose you need to be sure they will like their environment before you splash out on more, although I have got some dark pink seedlings you could have if you like..

  13. Petal & Pins says:

    Oh what gorgeous colours in your arrangement of hellebores. Mine are mainly pink,mauve and white -I’m going to have to track down some more varieties for my Tassie garden!

    • Cathy says:

      Oh thank you, and thanks for dropping in – perhaps it’s only when I see them like this that I really notice how different they are, and how many too! Wouldn’t it be lovely if they cross-pollinated and produced completely different babies too? Hope you find some more – they are easy to find and buy in the UK at this time of year…

  14. wellywoman says:

    Absolutely gorgeous! I have 3 different varieties of hellebore and would like more but apparently they don’t like being moved. So, until we know what we’ll be doing and where we’ll be living I’m holding back on hellebore purchases. The bottom one is stunning. What is it called?

    • Cathy says:

      Hope it won’t be too long before you know if a move is required and if so where. That hellebore is ‘Pretty Pink Ellen’ – and she is, isn’t she? I didn’t know they reputedly didn’t like being moved, but I am afraid that wouldn’t stop me and indeed I have just moved one that was hiding under a large fern πŸ˜‰

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