In a Vase on Monday – Linear

My husband jokes me about my lack of linear thinking. I am completely lateral. This week I decided to seek some linearity to complement the line of purple berries from the Beautyberry. I am convinced Florida Beautyberries are different than Beautyberries in other places. Every August I am amazed at the quantity and beauty (yes!) of the berries produced by this shrub.

The Beautyberry story:

I went to a local native plants nursery ‘going out of business’ sale shortly after moving to Florida. The Beautyberries were 3 for 10 dollars. Of course, I bought three. Thinking about putting them in a couple of different locations, not really knowing where to site them in the atrocious sand in my garden. Also not realizing the dramatic seasonal shift of the sun in my new home; I planted one on the due north side of my garage near the exit from our screen porch. Reasoning (lateral as usual) for this location: I thought it would stay shady enough for what was an understory shrub to me and this shrub is supposed to deter mosquitoes.

Much to my surprise, the sun got higher and higher in the sky as the year progressed. Full shade in January is full sun by May! Frying full sun. Not fun to dig things up in frying full sun, so it was left behind the garage. And then, the berries showed up. Impressive berries. I planted the other two in a much shadier, understory location – one passed on and the other bears about a tenth of the fruit of the one I seemingly planted in the wrong place. Another gardening riddle.

Oddly, mosquitoes were much worse in my garden in Atlanta – though we do have astonishing dragonfly (they eat mosquitoes) swarms periodically here and I do stuff Beautyberry leaves in my shoes if there are mosquitoes about (it works). I rarely see mosquitoes on the screen porch. Floridians make jam from the berries. I have not tried this as everyone who has ever mentioned it says it is pretty but tasteless.

The Shrub:

Perhaps the purple berries are a bit clashy with my peachy garage wall..still not digging it up.

A closer view:

The purple and green berries are Beautyberries (Calliocarpa americana); blue spike flowers are Mystic Spires Salvia; purple spike flowers and varigated leaf are from a Coleus ‘Homedepotensis’; the long chartreuse leaves are from Lemon Aechmea blanchetiana Bromeliad. The vase was a gift from my late older brother; it always makes me smile when I use it – and its linear.

As always, thanks to Cathy at for hosting this meme. To see more vases, follow the link.

Happy Gardening.


34 comments on “In a Vase on Monday – Linear

  1. I think Beautyberries are such an amazing color. They do rank up there with other amazing discoveries, such as passion flowers and alligators, this Yankee girl made in the semitropical Gulf Coast.


  2. Cathy says:

    Beauty berries can be really lovely, but the shrubs look terrible for most of the year here… simply not suited to our climate! I love your tall linear display. I should also apply linear thinking more often. Lateral thinking does also have its advantages though… 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Never seen berries like it, amazing and beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Noelle M says:

    Your description of planting your beautyberry bushes amused me, and then to have them meet the linear theme even though the fruiting masses are round highlights yours lateral inclinations!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. pbmgarden says:

    Proof of reaching new directions, new heights! I love the tip about beautyberry leaves in your shoes. I finally dug mine up after finding it sprouting all around not just the garden but the entire yard, but I’ve always liked the shocking magenta berries.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Cathy says:

    Wowee, there you go with your solid colurs again and to great dramatic effect – it’s glorious!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. tonytomeo says:

    Tee hee . . . . beautyberry! That still sounds funny. I intend to get them eventually, but perhaps not this winter. It’s a long story.
    ‘Mystic Spires’ is a popular salvia here, and salvias are naturally popular anyway. I grew only one, and I thought it looked more purplish, and had a slightly different from from other ‘Mystic Spires’ that I have seen. I can not complain. It really was excellent regardless of what it was.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Kris P says:

    Seeing your Callicarpa always makes me sigh. I’ve yet to see any species in this genus offered locally, although my western garden guide claims there’s at least one that should grow here. The mosquito prevention effect would make it even more valuable, although we seem to have fewer than average of those beasties this year, perhaps the one positive effect of our very low rainfall.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Eliza Waters says:

    Great backstory. Siting plants often surprises us when they don’t follow the ‘rules.’ I agree that your beauty berries are the biggest and best I’ve seen. Mine often die to the ground in winter, so are late coming on and barely have time to fruit before fall. Also the berries are way punier than yours!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you 💖 plants do their own thing despite our efforts. have been thinking about it still raining??


      • Eliza Waters says:

        God yes, ready for the ark! We’re topping out at over 3″ so far and it is supposed to rain through the night. The waterfall is rushing and the river is up. I’m ready for some sun to dry things out, but I guess we’re in for more heat and humidity. Not looking forward to working tomorrow, as the heat wipes me out! This summer has been a challenge, I guess I didn’t realize how good the previous ones always were.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I have been watching the rain, the sun will return. Keep the faith..


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