In a Vase on Monday – Fun Fiddly Foraging

Despite having participated in IAVOM for several years, I finally started growing flowers for cutting last fall. Zinnias, and just planted another batch. My current challenge is foraging something in bloom to cut in my admittedly funky South Florida garden. Usually followed by fiddling.

This Monday’s ‘vase’ was fiddlier than usual. A big, antique copper teapot has been repurposed into a vase. This teapot has holes in the bottom and a repair can be seen on the front. A salsa jar was placed inside to hold the water. I had a difficult time getting the scale of the arrangement to suit me; rearranging the dill flowers and inhaling the scent so much that I decided to make something with dill for dinner.

The flowers:

The orange flowers in the front are Mexican Honeysuckle (Justicia spicigera); deep blue spikes are Mystic Blue Salvia; white daisies are Bidens alba; crinkly white flowers are from the White Geiger tree (Cordia boisseriei); the dill flowers are leaning out of the picture; varigated foliage in back is Varigated Flax Lily (Dianella tasmanica); peachy spikes with seedheads are from Tropical Red Salvia (Salvia coccinea) – not being red.

A better dill flower image and the grey succulent tucked into the front is a Graptosedum..which will probably root in the salsa jar.

Dinner forage:

On my dinner forage I collected enough fresh herbs (dill, parsley and basil) and tomatoes to make tomato and sausage pasta with roasted garlic pesto.

To see more vases (probably foraged) visit Cathy at http://www.ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com

Happy Gardening!!

In a Vase on Monday – Daffy

After cutting the yellow flowers and placing them in the ‘vase’ – the first thing that popped into my head “Looks just like daffodils.” As a nod to Disney’s famous Daffy and the Daffodils, the brass ducks were added. The ducks are a long ago gift from my father – to remind me to keep my ducks in a row. They make excellent paperweights and also make me laugh, reminding me of one of my father’s favorite sayings.

More daffiness, the weather. We are having the four seasons (not Vivaldi) this week in South Florida. It was dry and 87 F/30 C here one day last week, followed by wind, thunderstorms, a cold front – this morning, temperatures were half that and we are expecting everything in between over the next week.

Daffy.

A closer view:

The mason jar ‘vase’ is a thing now. I suspect this is part of the Millenial ‘farm wedding’ aesthetic. I am fine with mason jar vases, using them as drinking glasses is another story, ugh. I acquired this vase when recieving a flower arrangement.

What’s in it?

Yellow flowers are from Esperanza or Yellow Bells (Tecoma stans); crinkly white flowers with buds are from the White Geiger tree (Cordia boissierei); white flowers at top of arrangement are Lotusleaf Begonia (Begonia nelumbifolia); the chartreuse seedheads are from Sweet Begonia (Begonia odorata ‘alba’); ferny foliage and yellow starburst flowers are culinary dill. I love the scent and was surprised recently that two friends (father and daughter) did not like dill at all. Daffy genes?


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Photo by Anthony on Pexels.com

Well, it goes with the color scheme…

Thank you to Cathy at http://www.ramblinginthegarden.com for hosting IAVOM. Follow the link to find, probably (sorry) less daffy vases.

Happy Gardening!!

In a Vase on Monday – Solidarity and Vodka

I have been watching, with dismay, along with the rest of the world events unfolding in Ukraine. I hope economic sanctions are reaching their intended targets, though I worry they are affecting more than the intended. Right now our local grocery store is taking Russian made vodka off their shelves.

I am not a vodka drinker, but cook with it. Specifically, Smoked Fish Pasta with Creamy Vodka sauce. Nemiroff Honey Pepper Vodka is my favorite and a key ingredient adding heat and a touch of sweetness to the sauce. Much to my surprise this vodka is made in Ukraine, and a local favorite.

According to Wikipedia – Nemiroff is one of the top vodka suppliers in the world. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nemiroff

The dish:

If flowers or pasta can foster solidarity; here are my offerings.

The Ukraine vase:

The yellow bell shaped flowers are Esperanza (hope in Spanish) in latin, Tecoma stans. Yellow umbels are from culinary dill (Anethum graveolens). I am not sure I have ever seen the latin name for dill or knew it is a member of the parsley family. Blue flowers are Mystic Spires Salvia, a wonderful color match for the Ukrainian flag. The vase, inherited from my mother, from the Ute tribe in the Western US.

The American vase. Red spikes, Tropical Red Salvia (Salvia coccinea); red bell shaped flowers, Firecracker Plant (Russelia equisetiformis); white daisies, the ubiquitous Bidens alba – Spanish Needles in English; blue spikes are Mystic Spires Salvia. The vase, an old Crate and Barrel candle holder that arrived with my husband.

If flowers and vodka could stop wars – I would be on board immediately. Unfortunately, that is not the case. All we can do is watch and wonder and pray for Ukraine.

To see more vases, visit Cathy at http://www.ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com.

Six on Saturday – Tending Benefits

SOS once again. This week I am exploring the culinary benefits of tending my garden. I grew all the vegetables and herbs in the dishes and enjoying the bounty. To see more SOS posts, visit http://www.thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com

This is dill crusted salmon with fresh tomato and herb balsamic pasta and steamed green beans.

Green bush beans. I have finally figured out I need twelve plants to have two decent sized servings of beans for dinner. This is my second crop of beans this winter.

A very funky yellow pear tomato. These seem to produce better fruit if fertilized bi weekly instead of weekly?

New to the garden and my first ever pepper success. Meet the wrinkly Criollo pepper. Native to Central American and essential to Ecuadoran cuisine, these are very tasty. I am thinking Chicken Cacciotore for dinner.

Nasturtium finally produced a flower…a future sandwich or salad topping.

My very first, tiny, Sugar Baby Watermelon. Here’s hoping I can get enough water on it.

That’s it from South Florida. Two hours til lunch!

Happy Gardening.

Bees at Work?

I started this batch of Zinnias from open pollinated seed. The first flowers were pink and creamy solid colors. Now I have mixed striped flowers.The plants are winding down and I am letting a few go to seed and see what color comes up next. I am thinking these are not hybrids and have cross pollinated?

Any thoughts?

In a Vase on Monday – The Twist

Do the twist! I spied deep pink twisty stemmed Zinnias in the garden and thought I could wind them through some spiraling grapevines I had been eyeing..(that need to come out). The white paper mache object is from a college design class – the assignment ‘evoke the feeling of disco’ I think they are doing the twist. With the Zinnias.

The vase alone:

The grey glass vase, a thrift store find. Pink Zinnias, grown from seeds found on Etsy. White Begonias, a local botanical garden find; Begonia nelumbifolia or Lotusleaf Begonias. Smaller pink flowers are Globe Amaranth, again from Etsy seeds. Tropicals lounging over the edge are Shell Ginger ( Alpinia zerumbet) Ferns are – the love it or hate it Boston Fern – a native I love. Brown grapevines doing the twist, Vitis rotundafolia; they are difficult to like, producing bitter fruit and overrunning (or ruining) everything else.

Closer views:

I love color and texture..

Happy Monday and Happy Gardening.Thanks to Cathy at http://www.ramblinginthegarden.wordpresss.com for hosting. Follow the link for more vases.

Six on Saturday – Fab Feb Fleurs

Saturday morning has rolled around again and I took to the garden to find February flowers to join the SOS crowd. To see more February fun, visit Jon at http://www.thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com

Above is an underside view of a Shell Ginger (Alpinia zerumbet) opening. Eventually the flower hangs down from the branch. These flower every February and a few other times during the year at their discretion.

Long Island Mammoth Dill flower. I am not sure if I should cut this off or let it go to seed. The dill has been wonderful and is recommended for winter in Florida.

A perversely peachy Tropical Red Salvia (Salvia coccinea). One of my favorite reseeding flowers. Probably hasn’t had water in weeks.

Here is the red flower…Firecracker Plant (Russelia equisetiformis) I like the texture of this plant, though it is kind of gangly, and dangly.

Sugar Baby Watermelon flower. Hoping for some fruit! I am trying to grow these on a teak stool to keep them off the ground. Time will tell.

A blessing and a curse, white wildflower, Bidens alba. The blessing, an indestructible, happy prolific flowering plant. The curse, the same, and it can produce 1200 seeds per plant providing Bidens sod.

That’s it this week.

Happy Gardening from South Florida.

Six on Saturday – The Warm Up

Time for SOS again. To join in, visit Jon at http://www.thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com for instructions and check out the comments from other gardeners around the world.

South Florida, being true to its tropical spirit, heated back up this week and the garden responded. It was 85 F/29.4 C here yesterday. The locals were pronouncing spring had arrived.

Above is what I call my Jurassic Begonia, it started sending up flowers this week, the stems are almost five feet long! This is actually called a Lotusleaf Begonia (Begonia nelumbifolia) seemingly a roadside weed in parts of Central America – this is difficult for me to imagine.

A closer view of the flower.

The flower of a pink ornamental pineapple. The foliage is green and burgundy striped and the pineapple is miniature and will remain pink. These are too small to eat, but can be juiced if you are so inclined. I usually cut them and use them in flower arrangements. They dry well as tiny brown pineapples.

The Hard Cane Dendrobium Orchid I mounted in the Gumbo Limbo tree has produced a bud. The anticipation is building. I covered this during the cold snap.

Flowers on a Dracaena reflexa just starting to open. They have a wonderful scent. The buds are burgundy and the flowers are white.

I have finally grown some Cilantro! Now I hate to eat it, it took forever.

That is it for this week.

Happy Gardening!!

In a Vase on Monday – Wedding Inspired

Expecting something a liitle less colorful, maybe shades of creamy white? Not this Monday. While searching for flowers this overcast Sunday in South Florida I found colorful marigolds, zinnias and a bit of white in my garden.

The arrangement was inspired by my nephew, who was recently in a wedding in India and sent me some images of the event with flowers.

Here goes:

Pretty fabulous, I think. Garlands of marigolds are popular in India for all sorts of occasions. I like one reason best, the color of the sun is reflected in marigolds, representing brightness and positive energy. I imagine there are thousands of marigolds here.

Here is a link to more on marigolds and India.

https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/blogs/onmyplate/marigold-the-mexican-flower-that-has-become-a-part-of-indian-festivals/

A pretty shot of marigold garlands with a bicycle embellished with white and deeper toned flowers, another element of weddings in India.

Close ups of my arrangement, with about 5 marigolds instead of 5,000!

I think the orange flowers are African Marigolds from a cutting flower mix I bought from Sow True seeds in Asheville, North Carolina. The white daisies are our native (weed) Bidens alba; yellow tubular flowers are Esperanza (Tecoma stans).

Another view:

Pink flowers are Cactus Zinnias, grown from seed; the foliage – Asian Sword Ferns and a few bits of Rosemary. The vase, a thrift store find on an old brass trivet, probably from India..

There’s my multi cultural experience this Monday. Thanks to Cathy at http://www.ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com for hosting. Copy the link to see more arrangements.

Happy Gardening!!

Six on Saturday – Blushing Bromeliads

Time to join the SOS gang yet again. My Bromeliads and vegetable garden are doing their winter thing.

First up, the Blushing Bromeliad. I think these are Neoregelia carolinae. The foliage is solid green until we have a cold snap, then the plant blushes, staying red until summer returns.

Another Neoregelia Bromeliad, this is ‘Luca’ showing its deeper winter coloration.

Other Bromeliads flower in winter. This is a bud stalk, probably three feet tall, from an unnamed (or forgotten) Brom that has been in the garden for several years. The flower is a surprise. It should be interesting to watch the evolution.

This one, Quesnelia testudo, is considered by some to be the tulip of South Florida. The flowers last about a month.

I continue to harvest and enjoy fresh vegetables. The snow peas (mangetout) are wonderful cut into matchsticks raw and added to salad.

I finally got some good radishes – do I know how or why? Not really. This is a French Dressing or French Breakfast radish, name depends on who supplies the seed. These are my favorite and always cleaned and eaten immediately after harvesting. Irresistable. I shall plant another bag full before it gets too hot.

That is six from my South Florida garden. To see more SOS posts, visit http://www.thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.

Happy Gardening!!