In a Vase on Monday: Over and Out

Today’s vase is quite alien compared to any I have produced before but that’s purely down to the content: a bearded iris.

I am not against irises altogether, having others which have been included in vases over the years, but I am by no means a fan of the bearded iris. Too tall? Too clumsy? Too sprawly? Too bearded? I can’t quite pin the reason down and admit they do look striking in large clumps but they are just not for me and although I was pleased to a (very) small degree that this one has chosen to send up a flowering spike for only the second time, I nevertheless took notice of the space it took up in one of my bold borders and decided that it was ‘over and out’ for this lost label specimen. I had hoped that digging it out would reveal the label but sadly it did not, although memory recalls it having something to do with its darkness and/or blueness. There are now 4 bearded iris to sell on the Open Garden days…

Joining the over and out iris in the vaguely ikebana style vase are ivy offcuts from some of the general tidying that has been taking place around the garden. The dish is an amethyst Caithness Glass bonbon dish (bought new and well before Monday vase days as a pretty piece of Caithness Glass), with a stainless steel pin holder or ‘frog’ to hold the stems in place. The prop is a reproduction vintage radio which seemed vaguely appropriate for the ‘over and out’ title, the phrase originating alongside the birth of radio.

Not surprisingly this is the last time you will see a bearded iris in one of my vases, so if you like them yourself enjoy this one while you can! Perhaps you will even have one in your own vase today – or maybe it is something else that you have plucked from your garden to pop in a vase. Please share it with the rest of us by leaving the usual links so we can check them out on your blog; I myself am in London meeting Christina (My Hesperides Garden) and Julie (London Cottage Garden) so will be catching up as and when I can.

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48 Responses to In a Vase on Monday: Over and Out

  1. Pingback: In a vase on Monday: peonies – enclos*ure

  2. Beautiful. This made me think of the garden writer Henry Mitchell and how he loved irises. I looked up an old column where he recommends several kinds for the beginner, starting with at least 20 (!) bearded irises (for the urban and suburban plot). He said, “I believe nothing in the world gives quite the rush of pleasure that these irises will.” He was probably right.

    I have peonies today — my one plant in our garden having finally matured enough to give me eight blooms, all at once, of course.

  3. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday: Highlights of May | Words and Herbs

  4. Cathy says:

    I do love seeing irises in the garden, especially en masse, but they don’t last long in a vase for me. I am glad yours will at least be on offer to a good home and not just put on the compost heap! Love the little radio – you never cease to amaze me with your props Cathy! Hope your day out was fun!
    Here is my link for today:

    • Cathy says:

      Hard to say how long these will last, as the two open flowers had been open for more than a few days already, but it would be nice if the buds opened too. I am glad I thought of the radio, as I was struggling for a title/props combination up to that point!

  5. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday – Roses with Hebes and Dichroa – Absent Gardener

  6. I do like irises. All types. I must say these dark, almost black irises are striking. Happy IAVOM.

    • Cathy says:

      I admit this one is striking Lisa – but I am still not keen on it…although why did I buy it, I wonder…?!

  7. Pingback: Magnificum geranium in a vase on Monday – Doing The Plan

  8. jenmac13 says:

    Controversial pogonophobia this week Cathy? 😉
    My contribution for this week includes an iris, along with plenty of new treats from our garden.
    As always, many thanks for hosting this lovely meme. 🙂

    • Cathy says:

      Haha – I had to look up the definition of pogonophobia… 🙂 Very droll 🙂 Look forward to seeing your new treats…and your iris… 🙂

  9. pbmgarden says:

    Wish I could drop by your garden and buy up this lovely iris with it rich color. Nicely staged Cathy. Irises are difficult to us in vases but worth the effort. Have a great time in London with friends. My vase is

  10. Cath says:

    I love Bearded Iris but so far they have rotted for me. I do know others who grow them so it is possible, even in our humid climate. Those I know who grow them are fanatical though, maybe like Henry Mitchell ! who is one of my favourite garden writers. I hope you are having a fabulous time catching up in London! Here is my vase on a day which started cold and frosty day here in NZ.

    • Cathy says:

      Complete opposite of cold and frosty here today, Cath, so extra warm in the middle of a big city, but yes, a lovely day 🙂

  11. The Iris is a lovely rich color, but I see what you are saying ( a bit clunky) I grew the German Iris but always thought of them as old lady plants, now that I am an old lady I live too far south for that type of Iris, oh well onto my latest tropical madness. Have fun in London!

    • Cathy says:

      What an interesting observation about an ‘old lady’ plant… I can think of several plants that I would probably associate with an older generation – except that like you I am now of an older generation too!

  12. Eliza Waters says:

    Iris are not for everyone, I guess, though that is a lovely purple. Perhaps your garden doesn’t offer what bearded iris love…hot, dry, full sun. My best ones are next to the stone wall, where the summer heat bakes them. Christina’s garden is perfect for them and what a show she gets. Enjoy your visit with our fellow bloggers – send my regards.
    My vase is very simple this week:

    • Cathy says:

      Here I realise I all but resented the space that just this one takes up – a bigger garden with a bigger clump (like Christina’s) might be a different thing, or perhaps it might not 😉

  13. Peter/Outlaw says:

    Bearded iris are beautiful in bloom but the rest of the year their foliage is not particularly attractive. They don’t take kindly to having other plants around to cover the foliage as they demand their own space so I’m happy admiring them in other people’s gardens. This one is lovely and your arrangement is, a perfect way to showcase this prima donna of a flower. Thanks again for hosting the fun! My contribution is here:

  14. Kris P says:

    I do love bearded Iris but they haven’t done well here since our drought took hold and, even if the drought is now officially over, they also haven’t recovered. Your dark purple specimen is very attractive but, if it doesn’t pay for its space with regular blooms, I can understand your decision to pull it out – mine may get the heave-ho too if they don’t shape up by next year. Enjoy your blogger meet-up! Here’s my post:

  15. Leanne says:

    I do enjoy bearded iris, although I really don’t like the spiked foliage that sticks around all summer. The deep purple is beautiful. Here is my vase this week.

  16. The one bearded Iris I had in my garden seems to have disappeared, shaded out I assume. I’m not too terribly upset. Hopefully you’ll make a visitor very happy with yours up for sale, it is a lovely color. Here’s my vase:

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Loree – I have no idea what will sell, of course, and I may be left with the irises and lots of other spare plants!

  17. My favourite are the Siberian ones that are in bloom at the moment in our garden All Irises have beautiful colours and yours are no exception. Here is my vase:

  18. Pingback: In a vase on Monday 5.22.17 | Hilltop Flower Power

  19. Alison C says:

    I know what you mean about the irises but I do love the dark colour. They take up a lot of space for a fleeting flower (if you are lucky). Plants need to pull their weight. There are a couple of plants I don’t like but I don’t mention it much for fear of being an outcast! Your ivy, though, is one of the nicest I’ve seen and the radio is a brilliant touch. Here is my vase link:

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Alison – perhaps we need to be braver about our dislikes…I remember being quite taken aback at the horror expressed (in the nicest possibe way though!) when I turfed out a mahonia that I had never liked 😉

  20. Anna says:

    Oh that iris is such a rich and sumptuous colour Cathy but if it doesn’t tick all the boxes it was best to be ruthless. Somebody else will love it and you were left with a planting opportunity. I don’t have any bearded irises, just one ‘Pacific Coast’ one which is a beauty but each flower only lasts a couple of days or so 😦 Hope that you all had a fabulous day in London and so glad that the weather gods were in a benign mood. My edible vaseful is here :

    • Cathy says:

      I don’t know why I haven’t removed it before, Anna, although saying that I think it has only just spread out like this so it must finally be happy in the spot – tough luck, iris! So good to meet other bloggers today 🙂

  21. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday: abundant | acoastalplot

  22. Sam says:

    Gosh, what a gorgeous colour. I know what you mean about bearded irises, though. Every plant has to earn its place! My vase is here:
    I hope you have a lovely time in London meeting the other bloggers. Sam x

    • Cathy says:

      Indeed, and as my borders are increasingly stuffed I think I shall take stock at the end of the season and remove some undeperformers. Hmm, and perhaps some aquilegia ought to go too, and NOW, while I still know which are bog standard self seeded ones 😉

  23. johnvic8 says:

    I love the dark iris. A true winner. Please forgive my absence this week.

  24. karen says:

    Oh no- I’ve missed you all. I was in London Sun/ Mon for Chelsea. Hope you’ve all had a lovely time xxx

    • Cathy says:

      That is such a shame, Karen – we can’t always keep up with the blogs we enjoy, so you must have missed the references to it 😐

      • karen says:

        Oh sadly I missed it. I just need to give up work…..not likely to happen as have 2 girls at university and barely any grants for them as we have a bit of savings (for our old age) Sigh. xxx

  25. Cathy loves all Irises and the dark purple color of your vase is lovely. It is very curious as with the vintage radio, a pin and the plate has turned it into Ikebana. You are an artist. Greetings from Margarita.

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