Dear love, for nothing less than thee
Would I have broke this happy dreame;
It was a theame
For reason, much too strong for phantasie,
Therefore thou wak’d’st me wisely; yet
My dream thou brok’st not, but continued’st it.from ‘The Dreame’ by John Donne, 1633
Early this year I ordered rooted cuttings of some hardy chrysanthemums from a specialist dahlia and chrysanthemum grower and, tempted by the success of some of our blogging community in growing chrysanthemums in the greenhouse for late blooms, decided to have a go myself. Instead of a more typical variety, I thought I may as well try something a bit different – and to be honest I wasn’t especially confident of having any success – so chose one of the striking ‘fantasy chrysanthemums’, in this case ‘Salhouse Joy’.
Once the cutting was well-established it was planted into a large terracotta pot which lived outside the Coop until early autumn, at which point it was moved inside. Suggested dates for ‘stopping’ had been given, but as I wasn’t growing chrysanthemums for exhibition I didn’t really pay any attention to this – although perhaps should have done because in early summer the stems were so tall they dwarfed me and without staking were prone to snapping. At that point I just lopped the main stems to a manageable height which the plant doesn’t seem to have minded as the stems are now covered in buds – they are also covered in spider mite, but that’s another story!
The blooms, however, are a success story, as you can see – a fantastical, out-of-this-world creation and I am astonished at how easy they proved to be to grow,
considering the relative neglect they have been subjected to. I did talk to them, I suppose (sometimes severely), and they have been fed and watered when it occurred to me to do so (or, more likely, when the leaves began drooping), and I imagine they will continue to provide blooms for several weeks. The Coop is kept frost-free, but how will they fare if temperatures really drop outside I wonder?
Seeking a ‘fantasy’ connection for a prop to accompany the vase (three stems of Salhouse Joy’ placed into a car boot found vase which looks and feels very like the original 60s/70s Caithness Glass, although I have not seen that particular shape of vase before), I came across the poem ‘The Dreame’, by Jonne Donne, a poet I enjoyed hugely when studying him at A-Level, so was pleasantly distracted before writing this post.
Thank you for all your miniature creations last week on IAVOM’s sixth anniversary – I thoroughly enjoyed this challenge and it was a delight to see your dinky little vases. Sandra of Wild Daffodil‘s name has been drawn out of my gardening hat and wins some biodegradable floral foam which will be in the post shortly. Back to normal this week, so no challenges other than to find something from your garden or nearby to pop into a vase or other receptacle and bring inside for your delectation. If you would like to share them with us too, please leave links to and from this post.