In a Vase on Monday: Bruised

IMG_7393Ignoring the call of the roses, I gravitated instead to the blues and purples that are currently so prevalent, notably the aquilegia and alliums, for this Monday’s vase.

Clumps of perennial cornflower Centaurea have been opening in the blue & white border and although a ready spreader I can’t fault it for its reliability, colour or attractive shape. knowing I can pull up any excess when it gets ideas above its station. They were the starting point for the vase, but were quickly joined by an unnamed purple aquilegia and A ‘Black Barlow’ and single stems of Allium hollandicum and an iris I liberated from the last place I worked at. Providing additional ‘bruising’ were Astrantia ‘Bloody Mary’, Heuchera ‘Neptune’, perennial wallflower Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’, secondary flower stems of Delphinium ‘Camelot’ (which I am hoping might be advanced enough for the buds to open), a single ‘Guinรฉe’ rosebud and Persicaria ‘Red Dragon foliage, still looking decidedly sad. It seems to be the young persicaria foliage that can’t cope with being cut for a vase, as older stems tend to have great staying power and will often root in the vase water – I might replace it with an alternative, such as a dark heuchera leaf or two.

None of my blue vases were the right size for this bruised collection of blooms, so I chose this heather coloured Caithness Glass rose bowl instead, although the purple is largely lost when the vase is filled with blooms and glass pebbles and water. The single prop was a tiny boxing glove (to inflict the bruising…) which rather bizarrely came as a key fob with a pair of the Golfer’s trainers – possibly the Lonsdale connection?

I am still picking Winter Sunshine sweet peas regularly, giving away fragrant posies whenever I can but never missing out on having a vase of them somewhere in the house for myself. There are now enough outdoor sweet peas in bloom to fill a vase too – and I expect we shall be seeing sweet peas in some of your Monday vases today. It only takes a few minutes to pick material from our gardens and pop it in a vase to bring joy into our houses at the start of the week, so do think about joining us if you haven’t already done so. Just leave links to and from this post so we can visit your blog and see what you have found to pick. See you soon!


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77 Responses to In a Vase on Monday: Bruised

  1. Pingback: In a vase on Monday – White is only one colour? – Creating my own garden of the Hesperides

  2. Christina says:

    I was one who thought you might choose roses after your post yesterday! What a lovely collections of flowers you’ve found today and the colours mix beautifully. Here’s my link
    Thanks for hosting. I’m intending to write a post about the cut flower beds tomorrow if you’d like to join me it will be useful to compare notes.

    • Cathy says:

      I suppose roses would have been just too easy so it was a pleasant challenge putting the bruised blooms together. I shall definitely join you to write about the cutting beds tomorrow – I nearly mentioned them yesterday as planting out nearly the last of my seedlings was also giving me pleasure this weekend ps the sky is just as blue and cloudless today, much hotter too so I have done creative things inside instead of in the garden

  3. Ooof! What a collection – always love the shapes created by centaurea, those spiky petals dancing in a circle and that Astrantia – lovely!

  4. Cathy says:

    Gorgeous ‘bruised’ colours, Cathy. The colour of that astrantia is quite remarkable and you’ve reminded me that I don’t have any planted here. ‘Guinea’ is a super colour, isn’t it? Thanks for hosting! I might join Christina for the cut flower beds later on this week (to relate my awful failures in this cold, wet spring!) Meanwhile here is my vase – and it is roses! (I shall look at your rose post later).

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Cathy – one of the astrantia stems is not actually Bloody Mary but I couldn’t see the label when I picked it ๐Ÿ˜‰ For some reason my astrantias have suddenly perked up this year as they seem to have sulked for ages, apart from the white Buckland which always does well. I was so pleased that Guinee is beginning to flower well as when I ‘moved’ the rose garden 4 years ago the ZD all survived but the G didn’t and I had to replace them but they have been slow establishing – such a deep velvety red… Look forward to seeing your cutting beds – as Christina said – it is good to share failures too as we can learn from these. I know I have done

      • Cathy says:

        You are very brave – I think I’d be nervous about moving such a gorgeous rose. But well worth replacing it – I have a little ‘Guinea’ lust tonight! You will certainly be reading of my failures!

  5. Pingback: In a vase on Monday – more Romance and roses | Duver Diary

  6. jenhumm116 says:

    Hi Cathy, a lovely ‘bruised’ vase – that Astrantia is a great colour. I’m impressed you’ve got outdoor Sweet Peas, I certainly haven’t, but my Winter ones are going from strength to strength.

    Here’s my vase this week, and yes it is roses and very, very simple.

    • Cathy says:

      Thnaks Jen – the Winter Sunshines are brilliant aren’t they? My neighbour who watered them when we went up to my Mum’s was mightily impressed and will grow them himself next year. The outdoor ones are a random ‘Mammoth Mix’ I bought from one of the seed cos I use on Ebay – mostly blue and lilac though, so not very mixed!

  7. G.F. says:

    I like the way your colour range is re-inforced by the leaves hanging down on the sides.
    My bouquet is HERE

  8. pbmgarden says:

    Love that Centaurea. You’ve filled your vase with my favorite colors Cathy and I don’t grow many of these flowers so this is like getting an instant shopping list to pep up my garden. Your vases of sweet peas make me envious.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Susie – are they blooms which would grow in your garden? I am so thrilled wih the sweet peas – and they were no more effort than the outdoor ones

      • pbmgarden says:

        Yes, I think they would grow here. I’m an unreliable caretaker once the seeds have been sown. Have only tried sweet peas once and saw not a one live, but they didn’t get the attention they need.

        • Cathy says:

          Oh that is such an honest description – ‘an unreliable caretaker’. I would say I am defininitely an unreliable caretaker of any veg I grow except for those in the greenhouse… ๐Ÿ˜‰

  9. Love this color scheme.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Lisa – it’s good to use the blues when they are there as most of them seem to be late spring/early summer bloomers

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  11. Sam says:

    I love Astrantias but have never had any success in growing them, sadly. I love the moody colours in your bouquet this week. Beautiful. My contribution this week is here:
    Thank you, Cathy.

    • Cathy says:

      The white astrantias seem to establish more easily than the reds and pinks, at least that’s the case here. It’s the time of year for blues in the garden so I thought I would grab them while I can!

  12. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday: Femininity | Words and Herbs

  13. Cathy says:

    What a great connection between the boxing glove and the ‘bruise’ colours! Your Astrantias are gorgeous… I was given one this spring and am still waiting to see if it will flower for me. Lovely shades of reddish purple from the Red Dragon too (which I now have in my shade bed ๐Ÿ™‚ ).
    Here’s my link for today. Thanks Cathy!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Cathy – I have done several vases with ‘blue or blues in the title so I tried to think of something different. If it wasn’t for that key fob thing I am not quite sure what props I would have included, particularly as the painful knock on my shin where I walked into our vintage lawn mower didn’t come out in a bruise as I would have expected!

  14. Oh Cathy I love blues and purples….and my vase had loads of purples…blue irises! Beautiful glass vase and variety of flowers. I love Astrantias and keep saying I will plant more…maybe this fall. Of course the boxing glove is just too funny!

    Here’s my link:

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Donna – look forward to seeing yours! I shall be adding to my astrantias too once my plant embargo is over ๐Ÿ˜‰

  15. Eliza Waters says:

    Love the color combo today, Cathy. The astrantia, aquilegia and the centaurea – it’s like a constellation, are good company.
    Here’s my vase today:

  16. johnvic8 says:

    Once again you have put magic in a vase. What a lovely combination of colors.
    Our vase this week:

  17. Cathy, another lovely vase and I have had bruises in those colors, though I don’t think my bruises are very lovely. I always enjoy seeing what you can grow, Astrantia is new to me as is the Red Dragon. I have had Dragon Wing Begonias and Black Dragon Cryptomeria!
    Here is my vase:

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  19. Noelle says:

    A tribute to Mohammed Ali perhaps? Lovely selection of flowers nicely arranged.

    • Cathy says:

      Thnaks Noelle – a Mohammed Ali link occurred to me but only because of the timing as it wasn’t relevant to the vase in any way

  20. Peter/Outlaw says:

    Very nice cool colors. The wilted young Persicaria seems perfect for the bruised theme. I cheated this week and used flowers gathered at a local nursery.

  21. I too was sure I’d see roses in your vase this morning but the collection of blooms you selected from your bountiful garden is wonderful even without them. Astrantia is another of the coveted blooms on the long list of flowers that don’t want to grow here in Southern California. The boxing glove key fob did bring to mind Muhammed Ali as the news here is full of his passing.

    Thanks, as always, for hosting, Cathy! Here’s my post:

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Kris – and hopefully you can accept gracefully not being able to grow astrantia when so many things you grow can’t be grown in the UK!

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  23. AnnetteM says:

    Lovely logout combinations. These vases are great for getting ideas for the actual garden.

    • Cathy says:

      I agree about the vases giving ideas for what to grow – they have made me think differently about all sorts of things

  24. AnnetteM says:

    Oops. How did the word colour ever change to logout!

    • Cathy says:

      Sometimes I think my fingers have a mind of their own – good job I usually read back what I have written!

  25. Perhaps your subconcious thought of bruising and a boxing glove in remembrance of Mohammed Ali… the Caithness vase is perfect for such a rich combination. My contribution is here…

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Joanna – it’s a shame the colour of the vase was lost, but at least I know what colour it really is!

  26. Pingback: In a vase on Monday: It’s been a while | homeslip

  27. Oh I really like the colour and the shape of the centaurea Cathy which I was admiring in my Mum’s garden last week. Admiring was as far as it went on this visit but I may have to bring some back with me in the future. It was most thoughtful of you to liberate that iris. The ‘Black Barlow’ aquilegias you gave to me last year are now in flower ๐Ÿ™‚ My vase this week can be glimpsed here :

    • Cathy says:

      Thnaks Anna – the centaurea is so reliable and makes a lovely splash of colour. Let me know if you keep forgetting to bring any back from your Mum’s as I am sure I can spare some! Glad BB is doing well – isn’t it great to grow things from seed? I think the iris had probably been there since the school was built and no-one had ever done anything to the clump, which was baked pretty solid into the ground so I don’t think anyone would have even noticed I had removed any!

  28. homeslip says:

    You are right. It only takes a moment and brings so much joy. I have been following intermittently and was so impressed with your beautiful roses yesterday. Today’s offering is lovely, I just love the combination of colours you have used in your pretty Caithness bowl and the title made me smile as I’m just about on the mend after falling off my bike (downhill at speed) 11 days ago! I’m joining in today and here is my link:'s-been-a-while/

    • Cathy says:

      Oh poor you – but I hope it was fun coming down that hill UNTIL you fell off! Was it more than ‘just’ bruising’ though, and id it leave you quite shaken? What a shame I can’t give you a little posy to help your recovery… At least you have made yourself a posy and I am off to look at it now…

  29. Oh that last image just had me smiling, gorgeous! It’s also good to know you’re experiencing the same issue with the young Persicaria foliage wilting.

    I used my vase this week to kick off another of my Challenge “contests”….

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Loree – and I still cut my Red Dragon when it is young, forgetting that it will flop, because it is so attractive!

  30. A timely entry for the bruised blooms and boxing glove following the sad demise of Ali. I have a pink pot today.

  31. My favourite colours. Just lovely!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Allison – it’s worth grabbing these colourse while they are still there although I am very excited about the delphinium which has loads of secondary shoots as well as the main stem and the two I picked for the vase seem to be opening which I wasn’t convinced they would do ๐Ÿ™‚

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  34. Gillian says:

    Whoops! Sorry Cathy… I should have commented yesterday. Your flowers are lovely this week. I like the Astrantia in particular. I’ve gone for a mixed bunch this week starting off with Foxgloves.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Gillian – my various astrantia seem to be perking up again after sulking for a couple of yearsand I am looking forward to decent size clumps instead of just the odd flower

  35. k hopkins says:

    Ay, Cathy, it seems my message on Monday did not get through. Oh well, just wanted you to know that I did try to participate. And that centaurea is amazing!

    • Cathy says:

      Oh Karen – no, not that I am aware of. Thanks for trying again. The centaurea is such an ‘ordinary’ flower in many ways but it is such a delightful colour and such a fascinating shape, isn’t it?

  36. Julie says:

    Hi Cathy – I have just realised that I never left a link on Monday – so sorry! My daughter and I are watching the sewing bee on BBC2 at 9pm which is terrible for my Monday blogging – I just managed to publish the post, read yours and then that was it. Your bruised vase is very creative – such a great variety of material and good use of the Centaurea – I grow it and love it but don’t think I have ever used it in a vase.

    My vase this week is at:

  37. Amy Myers says:

    I love your colour combination – so perfectly completed with the persicaria foliage, which hopefully worked out though I can image heuchera being a lovely replacement! The combination of Astrantia and Centaurea makes for some fantastic texture too…
    I can’t believe I am getting here sooo late this week -despite making the vase Monday, I couldn’t get my post up as I’ve been a bit under the weather! It’s up now, at any rate, with a few flowers that weren’t really supposed to be blooming just now ๐Ÿ˜‰

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