In a Vase on Monday: Springtime Swingtime

IMG_1813It didn’t take long to gather material for today’s vase but resisting additional blooms was tough – bluebells in particular had been on the mental list but were rejected to enable the vase to keep a pastel focus. Once picked, all of today’s blooms quickly drooped, obviously wanting to curl up and go back to sleep, but Springtime Bedtime doesn’t have quite the same ring to it. Not only this but the tulips were opening faster than I could put the arrangement together and dithering for appropriate props was not helping. Not altogether satisfied, I have just taken pictures of the vase without supporting paraphernalia – the first time I have not felt a at least a slight sense of satisfaction with the result.

IMG_1814The ‘Peach Blossom’ tulips, saved from last year but resulting in relatively tiny blooms, were the starting point, joined by pink Dicentra spectabilis for a ‘swinging’ focus. The wallflowers were the perfect shade of pink to complement them and will add fragrance to the arrangement, whilst summer snowflake Leucojum aestivum brought additional swing and together with the Primula denticulata inject some lightness into the grouping. The one aspect I do feel is inspired in today’s vase is the inclusion of the fresh feathery brown flowers of Luzula sylvatica ‘Marginata’ – a spur of the moment choice, and doesn’t it work well? I hadn’t even noticed it was flowering, it being one of those reliable plants that makes a continuous but subtle impact throughout the year.

It may be that the blooms will perk up a little bit as they get used to their temporary location but meanwhile I feel they are sitting glowering at me and wishing they were back home – let’s hope that anyone else posting a vase today will have more joy and happier blooms! I would love to see what others have found in their own gardens or round about, so please think about joining in too – those of us contributing are finding we look and think about our plants in a different way, finding the meme quite empowering. Just include a link to this post and a link to yours in a comment if you would like us to see what you have put together in a vase this Monday.



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27 Responses to In a Vase on Monday: Springtime Swingtime

  1. pbmgarden says:

    Cathy, this looks like springtime itself with your choice of pinks and white. It’s nice to have filler plants in your garden such as Luzula sylvatica ‘Marginata’ to incorporate into your arrangement. I’ll have to look that up.
    It must be disappointing for you to not feel satisfied from your arrangement this week. I’m not experienced in using these particular flowers for arrangements except tulips, which do open quickly. You might try recutting the stems underwater and even shortening the stems a bit.
    Thanks again for hosting. It’s always fun to play with the flowers each week. My arrangement for this week is at

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Susie. It did perk up, and looked rather better after a few hours – the dicentra stems were very ‘open’ and watery and clearly objected to being cut in the first instance! I wasn’t sure whether to do anything with them prior to using them – all part of the learning experience!

  2. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday – First flowers from the Cuttings Garden | Creating my own garden of the Hesperides

  3. Christina says:

    Thanks for hosting Cathy, I’m sorry you’re not 100% satisfied this week but perhaps if the blloms perk up you will be. It looks very pretty to me with the soft pastel shades of pink. A very different colour scheme to mine this week. Mine are the very first colours ever cut from the cuttings garden! Here’s my link:

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Christina – it is looking better now, so I am a bit happier! But how exciting for you – cutting from your cuttings garden!! That is still a long way off for me!

  4. Kris P says:

    I’m just impressed that you’ve got tulips, as well as Dicentra and Leucojum – I can’t grow any of them here. My construction has a bit of a split personality this week but here it is:

    Thanks again for hosting, Cathy!

    • Cathy says:

      But this is what makes it interesting, Kris, seeing what other people can grow. Everything is a bit early here – well, compared to last year

  5. Anna says:

    Oh most pretty in pink Cathy and do I like the airy effect that the luzula provides. I have a vase at long last to contribute but a confession too – it was all assembled last Sunday/Monday 🙂 It can be found here :
    Looking forward to peeking at other vases later today 🙂

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Anna – and welcome! But .. accidents will happen? Has someone or something been running amok in your garden?

  6. Chloris says:

    It is so pretty, I don’t know why you are not happy with it. I never thought of using Luzula sylvatica in flower arrangements, it is perfect with the pink shades.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Chloris – I am still disappointed not to have included any props, but the vase itself has grown on me and I shall definitely use luzula another time

  7. Cathy says:

    I think your vase is really gorgeous this week Cathy! So romantic and relaxed, and the Luzula is ideal to set off the snowflakes. Here’s my vase for this week:
    Thanks Cathy! 😀

    • Cathy says:

      Oh, thank you – and looking at it now I can see it does have at least some merit! All part of the learning curve, I suppose 😉

  8. Pingback: In A Vase On Monday – Fragile Beauty and Seductive Scent | Peonies & Posies

  9. Julie says:

    I think the effect of your vase is lovely Cathy – very romantic and floaty and I love the pastel colours!

    Best practise when cutting flowers is to cut them early in the morning or evening the day before you want to arrange them and leave them in a deep jug of water overnight. Also when cutting I try to have a bucket or jug of water with me so that I can put them straight into the water – any delay can cause them to droop. I know that the idea here is to cut the flowers on a Monday, but as we move away from the tougher winter materials to the delicate spring stems it might be better to prepare on Sunday and arrange on Monday. You should recut the stems as you make the arrangement. A final thought – spring stems can be very floppy whatever you do in the preparation and a supply of twiggy material can be helpful to give them something to lean on in a vase. That said – I still think you should be proud of what you have made!

    My contribution this week is at

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Julie – in retrospect I can see that there is a hint of romanticism about it! Thanks for all the guidance and support – these are really practical suggestions that it would be worth getting in the habit of doing.

  10. A very pretty arrangement! I love the addition of the luzula. I’m a huge fan of grasses in the garden and love how they soften each picture. It’s interesting to see them have the same effect in a vase. I’m glad you are now happier with your arrangement – I think it’s lovely!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks – other bloggers have used grasses to add interest to their borders which is something I have not done up to know, but I have got some briza seedlings on the go so that’s a start

  11. croftgarden says:

    This very light and pretty arrangement is given a touch of opulence by the inclusion of the pinks. AS my approach is flower arranging is somewhat anarchic, I like loose floppy arrangements. I’d rather have a vase full of floppy tulips than rigid ones, preferably with a dusting of pollen and a fallen petal on the windowsill. I think that probably reveals rather too much about my housekeeping skills. So I offer my own humble little vase for scrutiny ( and a thank you for letting me join your very superior meme. 🙂

    • Cathy says:

      I know exactly where your tongue was when you wrote this Christine!! 😉 I am interested in your loose and floppy philosophy though, which is rather similar to the just plonking variation – and agree that there must be a link with that strange concept you mentioned… ‘housekeeping skills’. I certainly prefer a bit of loose and floppy plonking…;)

      • croftgarden says:

        Loose and floppy describes my technique with the duster (but not in the holiday cottage where I’m more professional – honest). Seriously have a look at some 17C flower paintings for the floppy tulip style!

  12. Annette says:

    A very graceful arrangement featuring a group of most elegant and diverse dancers – I like it very much 🙂

  13. I’m loving your in a vase on Monday posts. Those pinks are stunning.

    • Cathy says:

      Oh thank you for your kind comments – it has been quite empowering developing this In a Vase on Monday meme, for all of us who have joined in

  14. Well I really love your vase this week, very romantic and pretty, and was quite surprised to read your comments about it! I am hoping I will soon be able to join in, I think I am emerging again, but I have said that before, and then a website broke, and sudden panic again!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Janet – the vase did grow on me after a time, and even last night when it was faded and tatty it still had a certain appeal that even the Golfer commented on! Look forward to a contribution sometime, whenever websites permit 🙂

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