Despite not as much red as I had anticipated, today’s vase still has a fiery edge to it although maybe still not enough to necessitate calling the fire brigade. Although still containing yellows, it is far removed from last week’s softer colours so hopefully won’t be considered repetitive.
The main focus is inevitably the sunflower, my first this year – ‘Ruby Eclipse’, grown from seed collected last year – or at least that’s what it was meant to be but it looks rather larger and chunkier than I recall and has only a hint of red halo. This was the terminal flower though and there are several minor buds so perhaps they will be more elegant when their turn comes. Joining the sunflower are a range of other blooms: Hemerocallis ‘Cathy’s Sunset’, Inula magnifica, Sweet William ‘Black Prince’, Eschscholzia ‘Red Chief’, still in bud (more of these would have been brilliant as they are indeed a very yummy and fiery red), Geum ‘Mrs Bradshaw’, Penstemon ‘Raven’ (finally I have a reasonable crop of penstemon flowers after many years of failures) and a few spires from Heuchera ‘Neptune’.
The lovely red mottled glass charity vase I bought in Shropshire last year would have been brilliant if only it hadn’t been too small to house all these beauties, particularly as the stem of the sunflower was more than ½” thick. Improvisation was required, and taking inspiration from some stripey cylindrical vases Christina showed us many months ago I unearthed one of the empty tin cans I had kept for just such a purpose and covered it with a trip of red felt fabric before cutting out flame shapes in orange and yellow and attaching them with double sided tape – et voilà, a fiery vase! Accompanying the hot-off-the-press vase was the label from one of the Golfer’s favourite tipples, fiery ginger beer, and an equally fiery carnelian pebble, hand polished in Madagascar. Carnelian is believed to stimulate the root chakra, helping you to trust yourself and your perceptions, and this is a particularly tactile piece, fitting perfectly in the hand.
It has been a joy to be able to pick big bundles of blooms like this, certainly aided by the cutting beds from which most of these were picked. I could have gone down any number of colour themed routes for today’s vase such is the abundance provided by the garden this month, but I knew all along that the sunflower had to be the starting point. I wonder which route other vases will take today? Reading about how our choices of blooms and vases and props are arrived at adds to the pleasure of the meme, so do consider joining us if you haven’t already done so – just leave links to and from your post so that we can see what you have found to pop into your receptacle to bring you pleasure this week. And please excuse my tardiness last week – normal service will resumed soon!