The cutting beds are host not just to this season’s annuals, but some overwintered and self-sown plants too, like the scarlet antirrhinum I featured on IAVOM some weeks ago. Along with this year’s scabious plants, we also have two striking and handsome clumps of Scabiosa ‘Black Knight’ from last year, or possibly the year before. This year they are even bigger and better and are covered in a seemingly endless number of blooms, thoroughly versatile in that they look equally attractive in bud, full bloom or embryonic seedhead.
Today is all about this knight in shining armour, occupying a shapely Caithness glass (rose?) bowl in the iconic ‘heather’ colourway. I had planned to use a sprig of dark-leaved Pittosporum ‘Tom Thumb’ to fill the gaps between the stems, until I realised that it loses its dark colouring during the warmer months and is currently a mottled green. Alternative dark heuchera leaves were considered but rejected, and I have instead left the knight to speak for himself (no doubt very loquacious, in a gracious and old-fashioned sort of way). In Ye Olde Days, ladies used to present their favoured knights with a personal token like a handkerchief, and somewhere I do have an impractically small hanky with a teeny bit of lace and embroidery in one corner, once ‘de rigueur’ for us girls (they are still available, as
I bought some for my mother fairly recently), but I have no idea where. I have instead a red neckerchief, when or why it was purchased is a mystery, but it has occasionally been used for ‘dressing up’ purposes. I don’t think the Dark Knight would be impressed, but to be honest I am not overly impressed by his performance in the vase either, thinking a flat dish may have given a more appealing result.
There was a breeze for much of Sunday when this vase was prepared, and largely hazy sunshine, but temperatures have noticeably risen as the day wore on and we head towards the promised record temperatures in parts of the UK on Monday and Tuesday. Wherever you are, whatever your weather, if you felt able to find blooms or other material from your garden to share with us on IAVOM then please do so by using the usual links to and from this post.