In A Vase on Monday -Grapes and Gardenias



This idea germinated as I was surveying my new natives garden. My natives garden is currently a repulsive field of weedy grasses, sand and Indian Needles. The Indian Needles are a native that look like Coreopsis, reseeding like Crab Grass. Crab Grass averages a quarter million seeds per head. Dreadful stuff. The one weed I have not encountered in my garden. Thankfully.

I digress. The grapes in the arrangement were noted on my survey as well as the Tropical Gardenias (they are the buds) The grapes are also native and frighteningly prolific. These are Muscadines (Vitis rotundifolia) I have been pulling them out for five years. The grapes, while attractive stay this size and turn purple. The wildlife usually eats them before they ripen. It took me a while to find out what these are, terribly seedy and bitter, they are male muscadines, the female grapes are larger and sweeter. My grandfather used to grow these and make wine with them, it is syrupy, treacly wine.


The Tropical Gardenias are the double white flowers with buds. Commonly called Florida Gardenia, the botanical name is Tabernaemontana divaricata, probably native to India and not tolerant of freezing, this Gardenia is from a different family than its more well known counterpart, Gardenia jasminoides. The foliage is a lovely dark green and the flowers are not quite as fragrant as G. jasminoides although the fragrance carries nicely on a breeze at night.


In the center of the arrangement is a flower from my Frangipani, there are also a few flowers from the culinary Fennel and some Asian Sword Ferns. I have been calling these Boston Fern forever, but they are truly Asian. Tuberous Asian Sword Ferns, is the whole name, Boston Ferns have pointed tips.

I decided to stick with a white, chartreuse and green color scheme and the arrangement is held in a Fostoria pitcher from my mother’s collection of American pattern Fostoria. This pitcher graced the table filled with iced tea at many family gatherings. The arrangement is in my foyer as the fragrance from the Frangipani and Gardenia gets a bit thick!


15 comments on “In A Vase on Monday -Grapes and Gardenias

  1. Cathy says:

    Those muscadines may be a bit of a nuisance in your garden but they are a great addition to the vase, and I enjoyed reading about the different variations of the blooms you have – as always this adds another fascinating dimension to the meme. I love the colour scheme too, as I know many other bloggers will. Thanks for sharing


  2. My what a fabulous prolific and stunning vase with those wonderful grapes…a perfect use for them.


  3. pbmgarden says:

    Beautiful arrangement with interesting specimens. Enjoyed reading about them all. Muscadines are one of those things I grew up with but never knew there was a different male/female vine. Loved seeing your Frangipani.


    • Thank you, I was mystified by the weird small Muscadines, my neighbor calls them Fox Grapes, which is new to me. The Frangipani is really getting going, I have a hedge (I know, odd) that is starting to flower from top to bottom.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Eliza Waters says:

    Your arrangement this week possesses the quiet elegance of days gone by–beautifully done. We really need to work on that sniffer app! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a clever use of the grapes! Mine, a red seedless variety, are mostly consumed by the birds and raccoons before they’re ripe, but I hadn’t thought of using them as a vase feature – at least that would allow me to use them in some fashion. As always, I love the Frangipani. Best wishes for a happy 4th!


  6. Cathy says:

    A good idea to use the prolific grapes in your vase this week. Wish I could smell those Gardenias!


  7. George Rogers says:

    All yor fans agree it’s the grapes!


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