In a Vase on Monday: Late Summer Blues

img_8141The sun is tired,
An extra few minutes
Each day,
Taking advantage
Of passing clouds
To have a nap,
And retiring early.
Mornings are
Softer, cooler,
With spidery
Misty-eyed dampness,
And nights reassess
Their wardrobe.
Seedpods are forming

img_8142And new growth
Trees surreptitiously drop
Litter on the ground;
Industriously plan
Their winter breaks.
The end is nigh
For summer;
Autumn beckons,
Teasing us with
Bold blooms
Of dahlias
And flushed roses
But promising her own
Seasonal delights
And a gentle passage
Towards winter
And beyond.

Some people feel this transition from summer to autumn more keenly, feeling the loss of warmth and sunshine and colour as the seasons progress; others are more pragmatic, recognising that autumn brings its own joys, whether it’s the chance to wear a favourite jumper again, better sleep on the longer nights or the opportunity to rest as summer tasks recede. In a garden, late summer colour can ease the transition, prolonging the season and blending the boundaries. Although my cutting beds have ensured there is plenty of blousy colour still,  summer no longer has much to show for itself elsewhere in the garden although it did produce today’s blooms.

The blue vase was built around the beautiful upright herbaceous clematis, C heraclifolia ‘New Love’, currently smothered in deep blue blooms, and enhanced by annual lavender ‘Spanish Eyes’, Caryopteris ‘Heavenly Blue’, Verbena bonariensis, Echinops ‘Blue Glow’, sweet pea ‘Purple Pimpernel’ and the tactile furry foliage of stachys. None of my blue vases were of an appropriate size or shape to suit the blooms so they were placed instead in a small galvanised pot, one of several IKEA ones acquired from car boot sales; perhaps a blue container would have suited them better, but needs must. The supporting prop was a small blue and white vintage china mug, possibly aimed at a child with the alphabet and numbers 1-19 and thus loosely appropriate for the time of year when many children are returning to school or starting for the first time.

img_8141What will your late summer garden produce for you to pop in a vase today? Do share it with us by posting a picture on your blog and leaving links to and from this post.


This entry was posted in cutting beds, Gardening, Gardens, In a Vase on Monday, Poetry and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

62 Responses to In a Vase on Monday: Late Summer Blues

  1. mudpilewood says:

    Beautiful setting that you have created. I have just gathered up the last of the summer’s roses and brought them in to work where they are brightening up the canteen. I should have put on a bright cloth beneath them, maybe next time.

  2. Patsi says:

    Lovely arrangement of colors. So nice to see the cheer that September brings. Here I have a small garden but can manage to join your meme but oddly the lack of vases stops me from doing so, Silly right ?

    • Cathy says:

      Oh please use the term ‘vase’ loosely – it could be a jar or a mug or any other receptacle, or none at all of course. The meme is to encourage us to pick them and bring them inside to enjoy. See you soon…?

  3. Cath says:

    I think the silvery blue of the galvanised pot is just right for that Autmn nostalgia. Of course down here Is where your sun spends those hours of dream time, partying – no wonder waking tired. Here are my sunset photos of the sun rise tulips.

  4. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday – Zinnias are the stars – Creating my own garden of the Hesperides

  5. Christina says:

    Your vase does look very end of summer-ish, but I wouldn’t be surprised if some plants don’t surprise you with some more flowers; that’s certainly happening here. Thanks for hosting Cathy, here’s my link:

    • Cathy says:

      I just needed to show the wonderful blue of the clematis and sought out other blues to join it – all from beds other than the cutting ones. Forgot about the larkspur though, which has only made it to a vase once or twice!

  6. I love the Echinops and Lambs Ears together and the blue flowers in general. I really need to go to Ikea, I like all the vases you have from there. I am noticing the season changing in Tropic Florida. as well, Here is my post.

  7. Chloris says:

    I like your moody blues Cathy. Your ‘Going Back to School’ theme started off a chain of thought which led to my ‘In a Vase’ offering this week.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Chloris, although the going back to school was an afterthought actually, after the mug had been chosen, and it just seemed to link in! This is how it goes sometimes, as you have found with triggering thoughts for your vase ๐Ÿ˜‰

  8. Eliza Waters says:

    Your poem expresses this season of transition perfectly, Cathy. Changes are impossible to ignore any longer, resistance is futile. ๐Ÿ™‚ On we go into autumn and beyond, the land of long, dark nights, alas. Your vase this week aptly shows where we are in the calendar year. I think I need to replace my Caryopteris, I miss it!
    My vase this week is in full denial of the calendar!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Eliza – I started with the blue flowers and just thought this feeling that some people get needed recognition and thus the poem was born. My caryopteris was new last year – are they short lived?

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  10. Cathy says:

    Those words are wonderful and really reflect the mood and atmosphere of the garden in September. A very pretty vase as well – I think the silver vase is ideal. ๐Ÿ™‚ Here is my vase – still very summery here!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Cathy – I haven’t written a poem for ages, so it was good to produce this. And I thought the paler blues were possibly a little lost against the grey/silver vase?

  11. I have not had good luck with Verbena bonariensis and it really makes your bouquet pop! Love the alphabet cup. I collect children’s alphabet books. My offering for today is here:

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Linda – I am hoping the verbena self seeds. It is in its second year so may not come through another year, sadly. Intersting to read about your collection – perhaps you will use one of your books as a prop one day…

  12. Peter/Outlaw says:

    Your words and arrangement are wistful reminder of summer’s end. Both are beautiful! Once again I cheated and none of the flowers in my vases came from my garden.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Peter – and I am glad you have been able to create vases, even if the contents were not from your own garden. Are you busy with back to school stuff?

  13. What a nice color scheme. We are a bit cooler today but need rain.

  14. johnvic8 says:

    Such an enticing vase this week, Cathy. You keep inspiring us and we appreciate it.

  15. I love your poem, Cathy! I can only wish that the sun here at our lower latitude follows suit soon and lowers its intensity. There’s no melancholy about fall here – we celebrate the opportunity to get outside in the cooler weather and gardening activity steps up dramatically in anticipation of the rain we hope will arrive as fall progresses. Here’s my post:

    Thanks for hosting!

    • Cathy says:

      Yes, it must be very different for you – something that those who feel melancholic about the end of summer should be more aware of perhaps!

  16. Love the wonderful combination of shapes and colors.

  17. Lindy Le Coq says:

    I’m blushing to admit it, but I realized the mystery rose was my error. I’d transplanted some roses a couple years ago, the one featured last week was Rosa ‘Tiffany’. Here’s this weeks offering!

  18. I think you have just found the perfect words and the perfect vase to illustrate these days mood.Thanks, Cathy!My vase:

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  20. I keep wondering about getting another herbaceous clematis (I lost the first to slugs I think). Your wonderful example has convinced me to try again. I love the soft colours in your vase. What is the plaited twisting flower zooming out of shot, is it a verbena hastata? My vase is here:

    • Cathy says:

      New Love is such a definite blue, much darker than Wyevale, although I added the latter later on last year only to find that they have sent me the wrong plant – hopefully I will get a replacement. The heraclifolia are a great addition to a border as they have fairly stiff, erect stems – mind you, I would look more of the floppier herbaceous ones too! The ‘twisting’ flower is the annual lavender – well, I believe it is usually grown as an annual but it may see the winter out

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  22. Well said in that lovely poem, and a calming spectrum of blues. I am definitely in the pragmatic, appreciative crowd when it comes to autumn, and usually find that I still have something for a vase right through to October, so not feeling blue quite yet (that kicks in around January for me!). A ‘bold bloom of dahlia’ in my vase this week, along with a second, more frothy bonus vase:

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Joanna. The meme started in November 2013 and we thought it might be a struggle over winter, but several of us continued all the way through, and it wasn’t always just twigs – it encouraged us to look at our gardens in a different way, and find opportunities we might otherwise have missed. Hope you manage to sail through January next year!

  23. pbmgarden says:

    That’s an attractive clematis Cathy, beautiful for building your vase around. You asked last week how long a clematis might last in a vase, so wanted to let you know the Jackmanii I used lasted all week (a bit unusual for it to keep so long). Your poem captured well the transition between seasons. My vase is looking ahead toward fall.

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  25. Hello Cathy, I’m back after a long break and it is lovely to be able to join in with your meme again. I like your blue arrangement which is quite a contrast to mine. It’s hard to believe we live on the same island as most of our summer flowers have gone over and it’s definitely looking autumnal now. However, there are still a lot of rosebuds forming so I may be lucky and be cutting a few roses yet. I love autumn – it’s my season. The colours are the ones I favour for home decor and in my wardrobe – come of being red-haired in my younger days! Your poem sums up the season very well. Our squirrel, Cyril, is ‘industriously’ planning his ‘winter break’ judging by how often he’s been visiting his nut feeder recently. My vase can be found here:

    • Cathy says:

      Good to hear from you Elizabeth and hope you have just been busy and not been having to deal with family crises of any sort. Thanks for your kind comments – it is always intriguing to compare the habit of plants in different parts of the country, isn’t it?

  26. Hannah says:

    As summer is cooling down it seems the hot colors are being replaced by the cooler colors. I like your blues, I wish Clematis would still bloom here this late. I like the silvery contribution of the Stachys leaves. Your poem expresses the seasonal transition well, Cathy. This summer turned out to be fairly mild but I do look forward to the weeds going to sleep and leaving me more time for harvesting vegetables and fruits. Working outside in the cool air is lovely, too.

    My link today is-

    • Cathy says:

      Just a few clematis hanging on with the odd bloom, but this one is in full colour. I tend to forget to use stachys and yet the silvery leaves are a great addition to a vase. We are having another really hot spell so I could do with some of your cool air!

  27. Your description of autumn’s approach, and summer fading, is so very poetic, Cathy. I am looking forward to the cooler days and still hoping for some meaningful rain. That said, I’m happily embracing autumn today with a cool woodland tableau.
    I love your Verbena, Clematis, and other cool blue and violet flowers today. Yours is a lovely, calming vase. Happy September!

  28. Barbara says:

    So pretty. We have rain rain rain at the moment which is spoiling the early roses and the late camellias but such is nature and I embrace all her seasons. Thank you for your lovely words.

  29. smallsunnygarden says:

    I think this is one of my favorites of your poems so far, Cathy ๐Ÿ™‚
    I love those blues, and I think the little galvanized pail picks up the steely tones of the Echinops nicely. Is your annual lavender a type of L. multifida, by any chance? I’ve been thinking about giving that one a try as it’s said to be fairly easy from seed… any info welcome… ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Here is my nearly miniature vase, with odds and ends as the season changes:

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks for your kind words. I have just looked up the lavender, and yes it is L multifida sometimes known as ‘Egyptian’ (why?) lavender and has a smell of oregano…yes, definitely doesn’t smell of lavender. I will read up more about it and decide if it is worth trying to keep going for another year. But yes, it was very easy to gro from seed – some were started in October and flowered from mid June, but the ones sown in February grew much stronger and started flowered not much later than the Oct ones but are at their best now.

  30. Anna says:

    That clematis is a fabulous blue Cathy. The squirrels are certainly industrious here – I’m finding conkers in all sorts of obscure nooks and crannies. Thanks for your thoughtful emails – a reply is imminent ๐Ÿ™‚

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