In a Vase on Monday: the Jewels and the Crown

It’s good to use something different in my Monday vases, and today I have snipped stems from Ixia ‘Panorama’, also known as African corn lilies, a half hardy tender bulb that has been overwintered in a pot in the greenhouse. Described as ‘ivory-white with a pink edge and a contrasting magenta eye’, mine were pure magenta from the start and delightfully so; I shall certainly grow them again, whether or not I order fresh bulbs (they were very cheap) or overwinter these.

Joining them is another new plant, Verbascum phoeniceum ‘Violetta’, grown from seed, and introduced to me by Sandra of Wild Daffodil (thanks Sandra!). Really easy to grow, it has taken less than 12 months to reach flowering stage and although my plants are still only about 30cms, mature plants can reach about 1 metre. Also in the vase are a dark aquilegia, grown from seed too, Centaurea ‘Jordy’ and a heuchera leaf. They all had long straight stems and I wanted to avoid trimming them too much, so was pleased with the effect of the eventual choice of vase, a tall and slim ‘moss’ coloured Caithness Glass one, which emphasises the bright jewel-like nature of the blooms – glistening like garnets and pink sapphires.

Thinking along the lines of  ‘jewel in the crown’, some sort of crown related prop was required but I drew a blank; not expecting inspiration from the Golfer I asked him anyway, and he was equally blank, denying the likelihood of having any sort of crown, other than those in his coin collection…perfect! His collection of UK coins and banknotes in all denominations includes a number of crowns, and I picked an early George III crown from 1819. Crowns used to be worth five shillings in ‘old money’, the equivalent of 25 pence nowadays, but a standard modern crown, when issued, would cost £5 to purchase and be minted from a cupro-nickel alloy, rather than silver as they originally were.

Have you got any jewels in your garden, I wonder,  that you could pick and pop in a vase today? If you would like to share it with us on IAVOM, please leave the usual links to and from this post.


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

66 Responses to In a Vase on Monday: the Jewels and the Crown

  1. Cathy says:

    Gorgeous treasures indeed. And I admire your patience growing both Verbascum and Aquilegia from seed. 😃 Here is my vase for today. Thanks as always Cathy xx

    • Cathy says:

      The verbascum was so easy, Cathy, and so quick, and the aquilegia, although the seedlings start tiny, make good progress once they get going

  2. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday: Fresh as a Daisy | Words and Herbs

  3. jenanita01 says:

    Vibrant and unusual collection today, I wish my aquilegia came in such an amazing colour!

  4. Pingback: this week's bouquet - In My Spare Time

  5. Your African corn lilies are lovely and from the photos, remind me a little of cosmos. A beautiful combination of deep jewel colors. I’m equally impressed with your coins. What a treasure to have something so old and precious.
    My link today:

    • Cathy says:

      I was really pleased with the colours too, Cindy. The ixia has much smaller blooms than cosmos, and as for the coins I suppose because the UK has such a long history there are many coins out there and many coin collectors too – so in some ways it’s not especially old or precious

  6. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday. 18 May 2020 – Garden Dreaming at Châtillon

  7. Cathy says:

    Contents and vase both lovely (you have so much Caithness glass!) – that vase is truly elegant and the corn lilies are sumptuous. I tried some Verbascum from seed this year and am sorry to say that they are already running up to flower, although they haven’t made decent sized rosettes. I hope they persist, but I think that’s optimistic. Wish I hadn’t planted them 1 foot apart from each other!!! And how wonderful to live with a man who can draw on hidden treasure when required! Here is my vase today:

    • Cathy says:

      The rosettes on this verbascum are still tiny but I don’t know whether this purple variety has smaller rosettes than the more typical ones as I have grown neither before. Most of my older Caithness Glass came directly from the factory shop in Oban but the newer stuff is easy to find at car boots, sometimes very cheaply. I am always on the lookout for the original 60s colours as the 4 colours are so distinctive as are the shapes and the feel of the pieces. The Golfer does have his uses, I agree

      • Cathy says:

        I’m sure he has more about him than a fascinating old coin collection – I did love the ones that you chose. I think I just made a mistake in the way I planted mine (due to not properly reading the label on the tin!). I chose to do it from seed because Verbascum thapsus does so well here and I thought I’d try any other I came across. I hope we see more of yours – they look like they will be lovely. Mine are ‘Rose Blush’, or some such.

  8. Sharon says:

    Lovely treasures in your vase Cathy. My offering is from the first flush of Gertrude Jekyll roses

    • Cathy says:

      Thank you Sharon – and have you visited us before? It is a pleasure to have someone new contributing, so welcome to you!

      • Sharon says:

        I’m a very occasional visitor, more of a lurker! I’ll try to make an effort this time. Home working makes my time a bit more flexible!

        • Cathy says:

          Haha – a lurker! Please don’t feel any pressure to join in, it’s what suits you. Great habit to get into though, picking the blooms, even if you don’t post on IAVOM

  9. Half crowns. Not sure I have ever seen one of those Cathy. Such lovely jewel colours. Mine are a riot today

    • Cathy says:

      Not a half crown, Dorris but a crown – and I certainly never saw any crowns myself when growing up other than commemorative ones, but half crowns (2/6) were commonplace tender until decimilisation. I really liked these colours too and it sounds as if you have a lot of colour too today

  10. the running wave says:

    Lovely rich colours in your vase today Cathy! Just rushing off to read a chapter of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe to my granddaughter in Melbourne as she has just phoned and it’s her bedtime, but just want to say I love your vase! Mine is bright and breezy too! Amanda

    • That’s one of my all time favourite books!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Amana, and I was so pleased to hear you were reading this book to your granddaughter. I have been reading to one of mine too, not live, but sending a WhatsApp video and had wanted to read this one but decided it would take too long as it will only easily upload about 5 mins. It is the book that set me off on free reading when I was about six, and I still have the copy I read then – mulling it over, and having read your comment, I think I will record just the audio as I would so love her to hear it at the same age I was. I have reread the whole series often as an adult too – and prompted from thinking about what to read to her I have also just reread two of E Nesbit’s books for myself… Nothing to do with vases, but it just shows they trigger other things too

      • the running wave says:

        Books have to be the best thing to talk about! To bring the gift and books to grandchildren must be the very best thing a grandparent can do! So many treasures to discover, and of course the power of language which it is so important to keep alive, especially if it might engender the desire for the young ones to write. Hooray!

        • Cathy says:

          Fortunately this grandchild is already an eager reader, teaching herself well before she went to school. As you say, there are so many treasures to be found through reading

  11. pbmgarden says:

    Glad you are flexible enough to appreciate the beauty of the magenta ixia. I imagine the white ones would be lovely but I really like these magenta ones and the way you’ve combined them with the dark columbine and heuchera. Very lovely. Hope all is well. Thanks for hosting.

    • Cathy says:

      I am very happy with them being pure magenta, Susie, and as I hadn’t grown them before I had to look them up to remind myself what colour I might expect them to be. I have another variety as well – Spotlight – which is very definitely white with lipstick pink splashes. Yes all well here, and hope so with you too

  12. Beautiful flowers and a beautiful glass vase. I’m going to have to look for Ixia, it looks interesting! We had a nice gentle rain overnight and it hasn’t yet stopped – but I prepare my vase on Sundays anyway – here it is:

    • Cathy says:

      I saw ixia growing successfully in the Scilly Isles, whch is the warmest part of the UK, but it is unlikely to be hardy anywhere else here. I shall definitely grow it again. No rain likely in the next fortnight here, but we could do with it – so make sure you enjoy yours while you have it!

  13. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday – revisiting RHS Chelsea Flower Show. | Bramble Garden

  14. I like the magenta Ixia. I think I can grow those in the garden here and had forgotten about them, glad to see a vase to remind me. I hope they are cheap as I have terrible luck with bulbs. The deep purples are a great offset to the Ixias and I wish I had your vase. My father was a great coin collector, so I always enjoy seeing old coins. Here is my vase

    • Cathy says:

      The ixias were only about £2.50 for 25, so yes, they are cheap! I was really pleased with these ones and the dark purples

      • I looked they are available in red here and not particularly cheap. Will keep looking, love yours.

        • Cathy says:

          That’s a shame – I wonder how bulb prices compare generally between the UK and US?

          • I kept looking and there are some cheap ones, mixed pinks..sold out! I love the magenta ones, though and may keep them in mind for next year. I think the prices vary from vendor to vendor.

          • Cathy says:

            And I need to decide whether to try and keep these ones for next year – probably not worth the effort if they are so cheap here

  15. Ixia I love “Panorama” with its magenta color. I really like the Verbascum. I love aquilegia. And the heuchera leaf is divine. Cathy the vase you have chosen is perfect for wonderful flowers. It is a magnificent arrangement with a touch of class, I love it. The George III coin accessory from 1819 is great for the vase and its treasures of flowers – I love it. Keep yourself and the golfer safe and take good care of yourself. Very affectionate greetings from Margarita.

    • Cathy says:

      Thank you Margarita, I was pleased with the result too. We are both well, and hope you are in a better place this week in terms of your health

      • Thank you very much Cathy for your concern. Perhaps it is a little better in health, but the heat has come suddenly, with temperatures of 33º Celsius and sun and the heat does not sit well with me, although this for Madrid in Summer is cold. But the first heats I accuse them a lot and they feel very bad until I get used to it. Thank you very much again Cathy for your sincere and kind words. I hope that you and your husband are very healthy. Very affectionate greetings from Margarita.

        • Cathy says:

          I hope it does not get too much hotter for you Margarita – will you be going to your country house as soon as that is possible?

          • Well, Cathy, that is the intention, to go to the country house as soon as possible because of the Covid-19 and the restrictions of movement that it imposes on the Government. We are also pending the operation of my dear Mother’s eye of glaucoma and cataracts that by the Covid-19 was suspended and now they have begun to call in strict order: that is, we have no idea when they will call her for the operation. If the Covid-19 had not appeared, they would have operated on it the first week of April and it would be completely healed by now. But that’s the way things are, you have to take them as they come. I will get used to the heat of Madrid as it happened last year that my beloved Father lived and due to the ulcers on his legs we could not leave until July 29 and on August 1 we were already back in Madrid to enter the Hospital Emergency Department where he was until the 11th day he passed away. And we did not return to the country house anymore until September two days with my brother who took my mother and me because in the rush to leave we did not know if we had left the house tightly closed and the garden hose removed. Cathy forgives everything I have discussed, but that country house brings back many memories, most of them good, because my Father loved being there, especially in the shady garden with his radio or October days. the sun listening to Nature. Thank you very much Cathy. I wish you the best. Very affectionate greetings from Margarita.

          • Cathy says:

            I hope your mother does not have to wait long for her operation – is the hospital starting routine operations again? The country house clearly holds many memories for you

          • Yes, Cathy, the hospital has already started doing routine operations. The country house has many good memories for me. Thanks Cathy. Take care. Very affectionate greetings from Margarita.

  16. Your lovely post inspired me to post my first Monday vase. Thank you for hosting Cathy!

  17. Noelle M says:

    Another pretty vase. Aftercutting Violetta for my IAVOM last May, she recovered from having her blooms cut, and thankfully has proved sturdy enough to come through the winter and is now is quite the statuesque beauty. I missed by a whisker also having her in my vase. Grace is the focus this week:

    • Cathy says:

      Oh I forgot you had Violetta in your vase last week, as I am sure it must have registered at the time, so I will have another look. My plants were all in 9cm pots over winter (and these stems were cut from ones still in pots) and came through unscathed – definitely not statuesque yet!!

    • Cathy says:

      Doh! Last MAY, not last WEEK!!

  18. Kris Peterson says:

    I love Ixia. I have a small number of bulbs growing in my south side garden. Already all bloomed out for the season, mine were supposed to be a mix of colors but all are the same magenta shade as yours – still welcome but better moved to another area of my garden. They return reliably here, which is a signal that I should plant more of them this fall myself. Thanks, as always for hosting, Cathy. I did find a few new blooms to include this week. Here’s my post:

  19. Anna says:

    What a deliciously dark aquilegia Cathy and your ixia is fabulous even though it may not have been what you expected. I think I’ve read that the verbascum will flower in the first year if sown in February but I’ve always missed the boat. No vase from me today – I got sidetracked with filling that green bin and virtual Chelsea but I look forward to vase visiting.

    • Cathy says:

      I am being disciplined with the virtual Chelsea, and just watching the evening one, dipping into the RHS online bits as and when. I think I sowed the verbascum last summer – and there would have been some available for our plant stall if the openings had gone ahead! (would it be worth sending one, do you think? You would be most welcome although I am not sure how well they would travel)

  20. Pingback: In a vase on Monday: May – The cow parsley diaries

  21. Stunning colours Cathy. This is my very late addition to the party:
    I talk about delicate blues and yellows being spring colours, and stronger colours later in the year and here you are with your hot pinks an dark purples! Lovely to see.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Claire – I agree with you about the seasonal colours but I suppose in many ways it feels like summer now! Sorry I didn’t get over to see your vase on Monday

  22. Loveliness, and a very good title for your post. The vase really sets them off so well, too.

  23. tonytomeo says:

    Ixia really are delightful. I had never grown them before, but there happen to be some in one of the small landscapes at work. No one knows how they got there, since the spot was mostly landscaped with mundane shrubbery previously. I should have moved them after bloom, but we were not working at the time.

Comments are closed.