In a Vase on Monday: Elephant in the Room?

Today’s vase is teeny tiny, no more than three inches tall, but rather than a bland teeny title,  I opted for something more provocative, as you will see. With our garden opening yesterday, when this post was written, I knew I would only have time for a short post, which is why I often resort to photographing a table posy or two for IAVOM the following day. This time, on impulse I went down the teeny tiny route instead, with a few stems of Cyclamen coum and sprigs of Hamamelis ‘Arnold Promise’ and Sarcococca humilis in a salesman’s sample Bretby Pottery jug.

What about the elephant in the room, you may ask? Well, it (or they, as there are two of them) are not in the room , but in the nut, a betel nut I think it is. My Mum, who was brought up in China, has had one of these since her childhood and, as a lover of all things teeny tiny, when I saw them for sale in  a Chinese export shop in the mid 1970s I snapped one up. There were originally three intricately carved elephants (just a few millimeteres across) in my hollowed out nut but one must have trundled back to the jungle as I am left with only two.

In hindsight, perhaps there is an elephant in the room after all…how our open afternoon went. In a betel nutshell, I am equally exhausted, exhilarated and (coudn’t find an appropriate adjective beginning with ‘e’) astounded, so make of that what you will until I write more.

In the meantime, if you would like to join IAVOM with a vase of your own of any size, please do so by finding material from your garden or nearby and leaving links to and from this post.

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31 Responses to In a Vase on Monday: Elephant in the Room?

  1. If that vase is small, how tiny must those elephants be?

  2. Rei Clearly says:

    That is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

  3. Pingback: In a Vase on Monday: Thawing Out | Words and Herbs

  4. Cathy says:

    The vase is lovely, but I must admit I am more intrigued by the elephants this week! They must be so tiny. It has reminded me of the intricately carved ivory shell I inherited from my grandmother years ago, which I really should use as a prop one day! Look forward to hearing about the open day.
    Here is my vase for today.

    In a Vase on Monday: Thawing Out

    • Cathy says:

      Ooh, I look forwatrd to seeing your shell one of these days, Cathy! It took me a little while to fins where I had put the seed, and it’s the sort of thing our offspring might overlook when the tome comes to clear our stuff! I wonder if my Mum knows where hers is? I have seen (on televison) someone carving very tiny sculptures, using a special magnifier of course

  5. That is a pretty Cyclamen, I don’t think I have seen it before. My mother was a great collector of elephants, you reminded me of that and gave me a smile. I don’t think she had any that small. So cute. Glad your garden opening went well.

    • Cathy says:

      These cyclamen are pretty small, less than an inch across – similar to C hederifolium, but flowering in our winter. Will write about the opening in due course – just chilling a bit now, when not clearing away all the signs, cups, plates, bits and bobs, etc!

      • Good, I would love to learn about them. The variety of Cyclamen you can grow in the UK surprises me. I think I have only seen the florist type here sold as a house plant. You have been baking again? Same here, pumpkin cakes with cream cheese frosting today.

        • Cathy says:

          Yes, I had a store of about 15 cakes in the freezer ready fr yesterday – I suppose it is a mixed blessing as we usually have a stock of leftovers to keep us going, but not so this year. Cream cheese frosting on the carrot cake, which I suppose may be not dissimilar to your pumpking cakes…

  6. Donna Donabella says:

    Making my way back to blogging, and so pleased to see this tiny sweet vase. I have been keeping vases throughout the months I have been quiet and they seemed to keep me going even when things were a bit down. I am so pleased that you keep this wonderful practice going. Here we are still in the throws of winter so nothing growing outside. Hopefully in a couple of months we will see some flowers.

    But I manage a vase from store bought flowers none-the-less. So pleased your garden opening went well and looking forward to catching up with your garden and others.

    Embracing the Long Road

  7. Noelle says:

    You had splendid weather for your open day, so I wonder how many visitors you had? I too like small things, and what a coinsidense we have a couple of things in common this week…

    • Cathy says:

      Well it was dry, Noelle, but not sunny, but afrter 2 wet February openings we were more than happy! 😊 Details will be revealed soon, oce things are back in order!

  8. bcparkison says:

    I’m with your Mom in enjoying things on the smaller side. In fact…I am trying to get back to painting small. My Mother always wanted me too. Will see how that turns out.

    • Cathy says:

      Did I imply my Mum liked teeny things too? I didn’t intend to and am not even sure if sheoarticularly does…! Good luck with the painting small, Beverley 👍

  9. Heyjude says:

    Yesterday was a beautiful day here so I hope the same was for you and you had dozens of visitors.

    • Cathy says:

      It was dry here here, Jude, thank you, which is the main thing after previous wet February iopenings, and mild but not sunny – it meant I could put cushions and tablecloths outside as well as in, and visitors could sit outside too, which helps

  10. tonytomeo says:

    Ha! It is amusing to see that someone else put cyclamen in a vase. Common florist cyclamen are not easy, since they face downward. Cyclamen coum does not look easy, since it is smaller; but of course; it works for this application.

  11. Anna says:

    Well I wonder what you’ve got to say about your open garden event Cathy – like everyone else I’m in suspenders and waiting for you to elaborate. It sounds like it was a big success. I’m trying to imagine those sweet elephants in a nutshell – they must be so small! A shame that Nellie trundled back to the jungle. A most sweet vase of tiny treasures. I saw ‘Arnold’ in the flesh last week but resisted temptation. My vase is here :

    • Cathy says:

      I suspect the third elephant grabbed his chance when my Girls were small and they were allowed a viewing of them…😉 It has been a day of collecting things back in and utting the house to rights, with a bit of chilling in between, but hopefully I will be able to write something tomorrrow. The witch hazels were much admired by visitors and Arnold is a mosr reliabe fragrance-giver. If my small ‘Ruben’, which has been moved twice and suffered last summer does not survive I may well seek a modest replacement but not in the same league as my two ultra expensive ones

  12. Kris P says:

    I’m glad you have one opening behind you and I hope you have adequate time to rest up before the next one. I’m guessing that your previous openings have given you a following and you now have some regular attendees, as well as newbies. I look forward to hearing more. Here’s my post:

  13. pbmgarden says:

    I imagine your teeny tiny flowers must smell wonderful. I finally came across a Sarcococca in flower at a plant nursery last Friday and for the first time was able to enjoy its fragrance. Looking forward to hearing more about the opening. Joining late-your Monday may be well past but it’s still Monday in North Carolina.

    • Cathy says:

      Good to know you have finally been able to smell sarcococca – the fragrance is quite remarkable, isn’t it? I have been chlling this week and away from my laptop so am late catching up with you

      • pbmgarden says:

        Well, sarcococca’s fragrance is strong and sweet , but after hearing about it for so long I expected to like it better. Probably more exciting in a garden setting. Glad you have had a break.

        • Cathy says:

          That’s an interesting thought, Susie, as in a garden setting it can prove to be quite elusive and no end of visitors on Sunday asked me where the fragrance was coming from

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