In A Vase on Monday – Gone Native


Rarely, I travel on business. Last week my Garden Design work took me to my hometown, Atlanta, Georgia. We abandoned Atlanta, population 5 million, for a town of 12,000 in South Florida almost seven years ago. The onslaught of the sea of humanity I encountered upon deplaning – was a bit, well, unnerving. Not to mention the detestable traffic I had to navigate to get to my garden in waiting 30 miles north of the airport.

The garden is in lovely tract of wooded land, the forest so beautiful it makes you forget the hustle and bustle of the big metropolitan area. It was wonderful to be back in the woods of my home, the land populated with large White Oak, Tulip Poplar, Hickory and American Beech trees. The woods of South Florida, in my opinion, aren’t woods at all. On the other hand, the getting there was the problem. Getting there is why I am no longer there. It made me realize I have truly gone native. Florida native.


Everything in this vase is, unlike me, native to Florida.

The vase is a pottery pineapple, bought in Maui, Hawaii years ago. The yellow sunflowers are Beach Sunflowers (Helianthus debilis); the red flowers are Gallardia (Gallardia pulchella); purple berries are Beautyberry (Calliocarpa americana); pink flowers, Tropical Red Salvia (Salvia coccinea) – sometimes pink or orange; pinky purple grass, Muhly Grass (Mulbergia capillaris); ferns, our native Boston Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata).



27 comments on “In A Vase on Monday – Gone Native

  1. There is nothing like wildflowers. I spend my downtown in a county with a population of 6,000 plus cows. I know how you feel.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Eliza Waters says:

    Beautiful arrangement – I do love native wildflowers! I have family in the Atlanta area and the traffic, particularly in the commuting hours, is horrific. And the numbers grow as the suburban expansion continues. Sounds like your move was a wise one.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Amanda says:

    Wild flowers are my passion! I love the soft pinks, ferns and grasses in your arrangement. They are really lovely. Here is my Monday offering this week.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Our current population is around 255,000 which is much greater than when I moved here in the 1970s. Widespread of development of prime farmland is one of the biggest and most disturbing changes. I could never handle a big metro area anymore. Love your vase of natives including the fact that it sounds like you can grow Boston fern outdoors! I bought myself one for indoors last winter instead of a poinsettia. And I just discovered there is a pink Mulhly grass that is hardy here so I can’t wait to try it as I am always so envious when I see it in your vases and gardens.


  5. The most beautiful vases are those that use native flowers…..absolutely gorgeous.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Peter Herpst says:

    A delightful vase of natives! I’m from a remote town with a population of 750 so living in a town of 215,000 took some getting used to. (The Seattle metropolitan area has 3.5 million people and driving is getting crazy.) It must have felt wonderful to revisit the woods of your home state and equally great to get back to Florida!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Christina says:

    Wow! That looks so elegant. I do understand what you mean about returning to somewhere that was once home and isn’t any more.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Kris P says:

    Your natives make a lovely mix, Amelia. I love the Callicarpa and the misty grasses. My husband and I longed to escape Los Angeles County (10 million+) but circumstances conspired to keep us here, albeit in one of the county’s more semi-rural settings. Still, the conditions you described, combined by persistent drought, have me reconsidering our decision to stay on a regular basis.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Cathy says:

    A timely reminder of why you left – and you ahve certainly embraced the floral opportunities in Florida now. Love the native selections – but what are the white blooms?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, funny you should ask, the white flowers are out for ID by the Native Plant Society – they want to put the arrangement in their magazine. I thought it was a Wireweed, but am not sure.


  10. Cathy says:

    I love this vase with the lovely grass and ferns holding everything in place. I am also not native to where I now live, but it feels so much like home to me and I hate having to leave it even for a day!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Chloris says:

    All wild flowers? Amazing selection and what an elegant arrangement.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. pbmgarden says:

    Great collection of natives and I like the container a lot as well. Have been seeing some beautiful Muhly Grass around town this past week.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I enjoy Atlanta for all that a big city offers but I certainly don’t like the traffic. The central coast of Florida has definitely spoiled us…it is hard to go back to big city life.


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