In a Vase on Monday – Cool Summer Shades

Summer has turned the heat up full blast on the Treasure Coast of Florida. Daytime highs have been over 90 degrees (F) and thunderstorms pop up all afternoon. Not that my garden is getting very much rain, it seems to be missing us most days. So aggravating. So much rain and none falling where I need it.

The heat and humidity brings out the Tropical Gardenia, which was covered in flowers until I relieved it of a number of them. This Gardenia is about ten feet wide and tall and I should have taken a picture before I cut so many flowers. Oops.

I decided to use my vintage Blue Willow teapot and add some cooling colors and fragrances to my vase. The Gardenias are a lighter version (fragrance and size wise) of Gardenia jasminoides, which I love, but its scent is overwhelming indoors and they are more difficult to grow than the Tropical version. I cut this one out of an overgrown hedge between me and my neighbor’s house, once it got its head in the sun it took off and I tree formed it. I never water it and it is perfectly happy. My kind of Gardenia.

The close up:

Tropical Gardenias are Tabernaemontana diviricata; green flowers are ‘Green Envy’ Zinnias; deep blue spikes are ‘Mystic Blue’ Salvia; lighter blue flowers are Blue Plumbago (Plumbago auriculata); ferns are the evil invasive Asian Sword Ferns.

The colors and the combined fragrances of Gardenia and Salvia are adding a light sweet herbal presence to my foyer. Here is a view from above:

Thanks to Cathy at for hosting IAVOM. Follow the link to see more vases.

Happy Summer Gardening!!!


24 comments on “In a Vase on Monday – Cool Summer Shades

  1. Gardenias remind me of my mother-in-law, whom I dearly love and miss. She loved that fragrance. I always wished it would grow in my zone so I could share the flowers with her.

    Yours are beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The fragrance is a powerful memory. My mother grew Gardenias under the bedroom windows. I remember the scent at night in the summer with the windows open. I have seen the Tropical Gardenia grown as a houseplant. The fragrance is much weaker and mostly noticeable at night in the garden.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Cathy says:

    Very pretty! Cool colours are what I need today too, with our weather almost matching yours… 30°C and fairly humid (probably not what you would call humid!) with thunderstorms on the way. I always think how difficult it must be to grow a garden in your climate, and yet you always have such a gorgeous array of beautiful flowers. 😃 Love the zinnias and the plumbago is a dreamy shade of blue. 👍

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Cathy. Wow, it is warm there. I have to do the centigrade conversion. I was in Amsterdam in June once and was freezing the entire time. 18 degrees C! Our humidity has been condensating on my arms where I go outside. Steamy! Thanks, I am in my tenth year of Florida gardening and have not figured it out yet!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. pbmgarden says:

    Cool, refreshing colors. Subtle, unassuming and powerful arrangement. Your gardenia seems like a valuable addition to your garden. The green zinnias are gorgeous.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Su says:

    Very pretty arrangement, and definitely cooling! Love it. I hear you about the lack of rain – the same thing is happening here in MN. Hot (several days in the 90’s, too.


  5. Cathy says:

    We actually had some real rain today – not a lot, but very welcome all the same, especially with no grade visitors to have to consider! Like you, it often misses us here, but I suspect you need it more than we do with temperatures and humidity like you have been having. I love the blues you have used alongside your gardenias – your Mystic Blue Spires have proved a great addition to your vases. How long has it been flowering for? How invasive is this fern? If we keep seeing it in your vases we now know why!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • We got some real rain as well. Very welcome as things were frying. Myself included. Thanks, the Mystic Spires has been flowering since March 2021. I have a pair, one looks great and the other seems to be succumbing to mealybugs or something. I can’t complain about that plant. The fern is not very invasive in my garden as the sand is fairly dry in a wetter place it is a mess. And I love it for flower arrangements.


  6. Kris P says:

    I love the cool tones of your arrangement, which fits its container perfectly. I wish I could grow your tropical gardenias. I’ve repeatedly tried to grow varieties in the Gardenia genus but the results can at best be described as pathetic. As Tabernaemontana doesn’t even appear in my western garden guide, I’m guessing it wouldn’t be happy here either. Our temperatures have also soared and we even had a thunderstorm move through the area last week but all we got was thunder and lightning – not a drop of measurable rain.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Kris. Tabernae.. seems to be a bit of an obscure shrub. I could not figure out what the giant deciduous Gardenias were for awhile…I wonder if they would grow in your garden.


  7. tonytomeo says:

    Wow, that is ‘cooler’ than typical. I sort of expect the bright oranges and reds that look more tropical and jungly. Although the tropical gardenia is tropical, it looks sort of like a more common gardenia, which grows in less tropical places.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Eliza Waters says:

    So pretty! The Blue Willow teapot is a perfect choice of vase for these flowers. Hope you get some ‘real’ rain and not just the humidity. I’m not a fan of heat nor humidity– I think you’re made of toughest stuff than I! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Horticat says:

    Lovely! Your cool bunch are the perfect antidote to your soaring temps! And thanks for the introduction to Tabernaemontana diviricata – I’ve not heard of that plant before. Hope some of that rain falls your way soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Your zinnias keep on going. I would guess the tropical gardenia would not grow here.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, the zinnias are getting some kind of fungus now so we will see how long they last. I am on the northern end of Tropical Gardenia land. A friend in Atlanta had tree form topiaries (matched!) as houseplants in blue willow fishbowls. They were magnificent.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Diane Hackney Diamantis says:

    It is difficult to say that one of your arrangements is my favorite because they are all so inspired and lovely, but this one is definitely at the top of my list. I love gardenias and recently discovered two bushes randomly growing in a greenbelt between my house and the neighbor. Plus the colors of this one are so calming and perfect. Thank you for sharing the beauty of your garden!!

    Liked by 1 person

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