Today’s vase and its title pay homage to the first flower of the dahlia in the forefront of the arrangement, Dahlia ‘Nuit d’Été’, a rather attractive dark red semi cactus variety which came to me as a postage only offer from Gardeners’ World. I sincerely hope there will be more blooms before those inevitable first frosts, but at least we have had the benefit of this one bloom, unlike ‘Karma Serena’ which is still at the bud stage despite being the first dahlia to flower last year, and in July at that!
The pretty bloom is joined by an eclectic mix of autumnal material, largely but not exclusively dependent on other dahlias. The dark red of ‘Nuit d’Été’ is enhanced not only by Karma Naomi and a red Bishop’s Children dahlia but also by the chubby spikes of Persicaria ‘Fat Domino’, dark foliage and slightly past-it flowers of Sedum ‘Jose Aubergine’ and a flower spike of Miscanthus ‘Ferner Osten’, all three of the latter in their first full season and destined to become firm favourites.
Other complementary autumnal shades were added in the form of that hugely successful unknown dark yellow dahlia, peachy seed-grown Dahlia ‘Figaro’, ‘Italian White’ sunflower, honeysucle berries, rose hips from ‘Parkdirektor Riggers’ and a solo orange zinnia from ‘Sprite Mixed’. Props took the form of accidentally deadheaded blooms of ‘Figaro’ and the first but very belated tithonia, supported by a clutch of ‘Golden Hornet’ crab apples.
The tone of this arrangement, in its chunky cuboid glass vase, is somehow very different from more recent offerings with their late summer emphasis – it seems to have a more autumnal feel about it, a wrapping up in a wooly jumper warmth rather than the warmth of a sunny day, or am I imagining it? I like it very much anyway.
What autumnal material will you be including in your vase today, foraged from your own garden or nearby? None of course if you are in the southern hemisphere, but we look forward to your more spring-like offerings instead. Just include links to and from this post if you would like to share your vase with others, or just create one for your own pleasure if you like – just a single bloom or twig can be enough so do give it a try.