In a Vase on Monday: Feel the Beat

‘You are the Dancing Queen, young and sweet, only seventeen
Dancing Queen, feel the beat from the tambourine’

This hippeastrum/amaryllis hasย  gone from dry bulb to fully open and flamboyant flower in seemingly no time (7 weeks) and was in danger of missing its opportunity to star in a vase on Monday – but thankfully has made it. Cut short, with a piece of bamboo cane shoved up its stem, it is held in place in the small but chunky rectangular vase with little pebbles, and accompanied by twisted hazel (Corylus avellana ‘Contorta’). Red stems of Cornus alba were also snipped, before being deemed unnecessary.

As a tribute to the ‘Dancing Queen’ credentials of the bulb and in the absence of a tambourine, props were the sheet music for an Abba Medley, one of my barbershop group’s current favourites, a miniature drumstick and a stick pin featuring a drum kit. A few years ago, motivated by a conversation about what things we might regret never having tried, I bought a drum kit and had lessons for a few years. The miniature drumstick was one of a pair turned by a work colleague whose skills outside the workplace extended to both wood turning and playing the drums; attached to a key ring the second drumstick sadly but perhaps inevitably snapped.

In my mind the foreshortened dancer looks more attractive in her reduced stature, making it easier to admire her frilly and delicately patterned blooms, but I know not everyone will agree; however, so many Monday vase makers were reluctant to pick anything from their gardens before IAVOM, so perhaps in time we will all be cutting our amaryllis/hippeastrums and popping them in a vase as soon as the buds begin to open…In the meantime, what will be in those vases today? Just add links to and from this post so we can all see what you have found in your flower-starved gardens or foraged nearby.

ps some of you may have wondered why my post appeared so early last week, presumably at 12.01 am UK time…purely a slip of the typing finger when I scheduled it!

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64 Responses to In a Vase on Monday: Feel the Beat

  1. Peter/Outlaw says:

    I’m one of those formerly reluctant cutters but IAVOM has shown me the joy of bringing things inside to enjoy. Thank you for that! Your creativity in pulling together plant material and props is inspirational and today is a shining example of your skill. Beautiful!

  2. I have to get my indoor bulbs planted soon so they can be featured in upcoming vases, but with the holidays I am so far behind. I love cutting mine and making vases for the winter and this is a wonderful example of how indoor bulbs can be the feature of a wonderful vase….love it!

    My link has a veggie profile as well as a late trooper bloom…although this vase was created a few weeks ago so I hope you will indulge me as I don’t always follow the rules….it is nothing fancy and the pops have been used before. I am cleaning up the garden still, and hope to forage for some dried plant material to make a lovely winter vase. In the meantime here is today’s vase:

    • Cathy says:

      Hope you get your bulbs done soon; I just have some narcissi this year and no hyacinths, although I do have some more amaryllis to plant

  3. pbmgarden says:

    ‘Dancing Queen’ is vase-worthy in my estimation. Quite beautiful color and markings. While I’m still pretending I might get around to trying an amaryllis this year, yours is already in full sparkle. Oh, and I saw you had snow! Thanks for hosting Cathy and have a great week.

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  6. Cath says:

    I love that twisty hazel! I wonder if I can grow it, although all of my normal hazelnut trees seem to struggle. Have a great week, and here’s my vase:

    • Cathy says:

      Yes, the twisted hazel is great for vases – growing hazels are definitely not a problem and we have ordinary hazel seedlings popping up everywhere, usually courtesy of the local squirrel ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Cathy says:

    I shall be singing that song all day Cathy, with memories of making up dance sequences to it with school friends! LOL! A lovely Hippeastrum, and ingenious props, as always. (Do you still have your drum kit?) I am one of those hesitant at cutting Hippeastrum for a vase – my first one is just opening. Should I or shouldn’t I?!… In the meantime here is my vase for today:
    Thank you, and have a great week!

    • Cathy says:

      Sorry about the earworm, Cathy! Perhaaps this year will be the year you pluck up courage to cut one of your hippeastrum… ๐Ÿ˜‰ ps no, I sold the drum kit, but the experience served its purpose, and others too.

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  9. Noelle says:

    A nice up beat arrangement Cathy. And you sing too!!!! Lovestones is the theme of my vase this week, all collected from the wild! Wild things they make my heart sing….

  10. Hello Cathy, your amaryllis is a showstopper – can see why it made you think of the Abba song! I am becoming addicted to your meme, so here is this week’s contribution – hopefully I have got the link right this time!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks – and I am so glad you are enjoying the meme and finding it as addictive s the rest of us! With a name like Dancing Queen, I couldn’t help thinking of the ABBA song ๐Ÿ˜‰ ps well done for a successful link ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Pingback: In a vase on Monday – Who’d have thought it? – Creating my own garden of the Hesperides

  12. Christina says:

    The bloom is amazing, so beautiful. My hippeastrum is completely out of sync with the seasons, it flowered very late in spring last year and still has the leaves it produced after flowering; I have just moved it into the greenhouse but have no idea if it will flower this year. I was very surprised by the amount of material I was able to pick today. I’ve been picking and arranging all morning! Here’s my post:

    • Cathy says:

      I have a motley collection of older hippeastrum bulbs in one big pot that I shall bring into the warmth soon, but I don’t hold out much hope of them flowering ๐Ÿ˜‰ I m pleased to hear you found a lot to pick so I wonder what yoour vase holds today…

  13. Joanna says:

    Beautiful amarylis! I’ve never grown the double-flowered type before. Isn’t it wonderful that there are flowers that bloom for us in winter?!
    I actually found something to put in a new vase this week!

    • Cathy says:

      I must say, if I had a choice I would always go for the double ones as they add that extra dimension. Oh, and here it has to be grown inside and is popularly available as a dry bulb in the lead up to Christmas

  14. I like your combination of Contorted Hazel and the Queen, the shorter stems were an inspired choice. My neighbor, unfortunately, recently installed a drum kit in his garage. I will also have ABBA running through my head all day. Need to watch Mamma Mia. Here is my vase:

    • Cathy says:

      Ooh dear…do I ssume you are disturbed by the drumming? I was very restrained and gentle on mine and played in a room on the side of the house that didn’t have a neighbour…nobody ever complained, anyway! Sorry about the earworm… ๐Ÿ˜‰

  15. Chloris says:

    Hippeastrums grow such ridiculously long necks which topple over. I think it is a great idea to cut them for a vase. It looks so much prettier this way. Specially with the curly hazel.. Lovely Cathy.
    Like Amy I will have a Dancing Queen worm in my head all day.
    My contribution is โ€Ž

    • Cathy says:

      ‘See that girl…’!! I knew you would approve of cutting the stem Chloris, which actually was relatively short for a hippeastrum and of course even shorter now

  16. Eliza Waters says:

    We are running parallel this week, Cathy, only my Hippeastrum is still firmly attached. Amazingly, it bloomed at less than a foot tall.

  17. No winter bulbs for me this year and not even a vase this week! But I love that close-up view of the Amaryllis. Really does it justice. And thanks for the great idea of putting something up the stem to give it the strength to hold up that big flower if one cuts it. I’ve always wanted to use those flowers in a vase but never tried it, so thanks for letting me know how to do it.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Linda – I have not used a cane before but the last one I put in a vase sagged very quickly so I decided to give it a go this time

  18. Kris P says:

    You’re making me wish I’d planted my own Hippeastrum bulbs earlier! ‘Dancing Queen’ makes a lovely cut flower. Despite last week’s miserable Thanksgiving holiday heat spell (over 90F/32C here), the flowers in my garden continue slowly making their post-summer comeback. We even got a teeny touch of rain overnight. If this keeps up, the succulents may remain in the ground instead of making an appearance in a vase. Here’s this week’s post:

    Thanks, as always, for hosting, Cathy!

    • Cathy says:

      I was goiing to say it must be strange having your Thanksgiving festivities in heat like this, but I suppose it’s not that unusal where you, live is it?

      • Kris P says:

        Even for us, heat like that in late November is VERY unusual, Cathy. The temperatures broke records all through Southern California. I hope it doesn’t become a common occurrence – I might have to reopen the idea of relocating to the Pacific Northwest if it becomes such.

  19. Pingback: In a Vase on a Monday: All dried up! | Annettes Garten / Annette's Garden

  20. Annette says:

    A most flamboyant creature, Cathy, and as usual you’ve set the scene like a pro. Don’t grow hippeastrum this year but I think it’s one of those flowers I could easily cut as it looks so much better in a vase than in a pot. Hardly dare to share my ‘All dried up’-vase but here’s to the brave ones! ๐Ÿ˜€

  21. Hi Cathy, I’m another one of those who wouldn’t have dared cut and bring in flowers from the garden. I put it down to my father telling off a tiny me for picking the heads from his beloved tulips. Your Dancing Queen is stunning – gorgeous colour combination. My two bulbs are doing well but no sign of the flower buds yet. I have high hopes. This week, as I missed last week, I have two for one –

    • Cathy says:

      Your earlier reluctance to pick blooms is understandable – after a severe lecturing from friends’ parents when a child I would never ever consider picking wild mushrooms…

  22. Alison C says:

    That is a classy flower and I’m glad we go to see it. I enjoyed the story of the drumming. How did you get on and do you still drum? I am lucky that I was allowed to pick flowers as a child and remember making posies of Snow in Summer and Forget me Not. My daughter, not a gardener, loves to pick flowers and photograph the garden though she would never want to actually garden. I can see 3 vases from where I am now and that makes me happy. Here is my vase:

    • Cathy says:

      Isn’t it interesting to see how interests are passed or not passed through families? My parents both enjoyed a garden and both my sisters like to garden; sadly neither of my girls have taken up the gauntlet yet although if Elder Daughter ever has a bigger garden where their dog could be resistricted I know she would like to garden. I got my Grade 1 and was working on Grade 2 but by then other things were getting in the way of practising and in due course I sold my drums. It did bring me an appreciation of early Blues though which I knew nothong about before

  23. tonytomeo says:

    There are so many different varieties now that I do not even look at them all! I still like the bright white single flowered ones; but there are even quite a few of those. The doubles are of course tempting too. ‘Dancing Queen’ sounds familiar as if it is one that has been around a while.

  24. Cathy her Amaryllis is beautiful and together with the twisted hazel make a very beautiful vase. I really like the ornaments, especially the Dancing Queen score. Greetings from Margarita.

    • Cathy says:

      Thank you Margarita – the twisted hazel is such a useful thing to have for vases, and available all he year round, sometimes also with catkins!

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  26. rickii says:

    You always weave such good stories into your posts. I have a Hippeastrum plant from a swap that was raised from seed in the spring of 2012 (can you imagine?). It has some very healthy, graceful leaves but still no flowers.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks rickii and good to hear from you. My Mum used to have several seed raised hippeastrums but none of them ever got to flowering stage – it’s hard enough getting them to re-flower after their first year as it is!

  27. smallsunnygarden says:

    I certainly wasn’t expecting hippeastrum from you quite yet, Cathy – perhaps because mine is refusing to get started! I ordered from a different supplier this year, and will probably return to my old one next year! In any case your “Dancing Queen” is a beauty! I always grow the singles as I love their (relative) simplicity, but yours has me thinking sometime I should march to a different drummer? ๐Ÿ˜‰
    I’m jumping the season further than usual today…:

  28. karen says:

    I will be singing that all day long! Love winter flowering bulbs. I struggle to keep those amaryllis upright in their pots, so I nearly always cut them for a vase. Iโ€™ve just bought some new ones in varying shades of pink and white. Something to look forward to after Christmas. Hereโ€™s my vase this week. Sorry itโ€™s a day late. Broadband is pretty hopeless where we are. Have a good week Cathy. xx

    • Cathy says:

      Don’t worry about the day of the week, Karen ;0 ps drove through your neck of the woods today and kept a lookout just in case… !

      • karen says:

        Oh let me know next time. We could meet for tea at six acre nursery ,costock. Lovely little nursery. Family run. Good plants. Nice cake. Were you off to anywhere nice? Ps. You still havenโ€™t come over to NT Stoneywell with me yet. After xmas? Let me know. Xx

        • Cathy says:

          We were going to Barnsdale en route to somewhere else but the Golfer had to get his golf in this morning so it was nearly lunchtime before we left and time was tight today. Just say when you want to go to Stoneywell – do we still need to book and get the minibus from the car park? We had a great guide when we visited it soon after it opened

  29. Oh what a fabulous frilly flower Cathy – she’s a star. The song marked the year of my transition from student to full time worker and now I’m retired! It’s one of those songs though that does not seem to have aged if you know what I mean. Classic vintage.

    • Cathy says:

      There will always be songs like that, that take us straight back to certain points of our life, won’t there, Anna? ๐Ÿ˜‰

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  31. Bec says:

    Your lilies look awesome. I’ve had no joy growing lilies in my garden but I don’t think the local cats would approve anyway ๐Ÿ˜‰ here’s my vase (some old favourities) and I’m late as usual. What a surprise. Hope all’s ok with you cathy – I’m plodding along here. lots of love bec xx

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