Although perhaps an autumnal vase as befits today’s seasonal equinox, it was not quite what was originally intended. I have been ‘secretly’ watching the far corner of the cutting beds, where one of last year’s dismal dahlia failures had been unceremoniously shoved on a sink or swim basis – and had surprisingly swum! The first flower took me unawares, hidden as it was behind a bank of frothy cosmos, but it was soon joined by a couple more and lots of buds. Optimistically, but too much so, I cut the buds on Saturday in the hope they would be opening in time for a vase – they tried desperately to do so in the warmth of the kitchen, but today humbly apologised for their failure.
As it didn’t perform last year I cannot vouch for the flowers, but it was supposedly ‘Noordwijks Glorie’, a large orange decorative dahlia (don’t know why I chose that, other than for a location in the hot border) – certainly not what these single yellow flowers are! The other possibility is that it is one of my ‘Bishop’s Children’ seedlings, somehow grown bushier and more advanced than the others – whatever it is, the slugs haven’t found it and despite all the buds I cut there will be many more to come. The problem now was what to put in the vase….. Having already considered including 3 precious flowers from ‘Bishop of Llandaff these were now a must, but anything else in these shades came with a short stem and it would be a shame to to cut the dahlias back too much, particularly as I was chuffed to have them in the first place!
Looking for some texture without too much colour I cut some prickly stems of echinops and spent flowers of alchemilla, the latter something I have not used nearly as much in vases as I thought I would. On my way back to the house I chanced a few Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ sprigs, in the hope that they would bridge the shade gap between the two different dahlias. The vase was a clear Caithness glass vase with a couple of subtle swirly stripes in yellow and orange, barely noticeable once the vase was crammed with the unopened dahlia buds too – in retrospect a larger vase might have been better, or the original buds could have been left out.
I remain unsure about the finished vase, partly because not having had the opportunity of using dahlias before it doesn’t yet seem ‘me’, if you can understand that, but every time I sneak a look at it I have a more favourable impression, so in due course it will get the thumbs up! If you would like to have an exciting Monday like other contributors to this meme and enjoy the process of seeking out things from your garden to put, plonk or perfectly place in a vase or other container then you would be most welcome to join us – we have inspired each other and realised how much pleasure there is to be had from bringing the garden inside our houses in this way. Just post your vase with a link to this post, and leave a comment on this post with a link back to yours so we can all have a look and encourage and inspire you to join in regularly.