In A Vase on Monday -Holiday Wrap Up

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Today is Christmas and I decided we needed a centerpiece for dinner. My natural inclination goes towards casual and I have but one set of china anymore and it is Portmerion Botanic Garden (not surprising). I truly believe my mother is still angry (from the great beyond) that I did not choose a silver pattern when I married.

So, above is my casual goes with Portmerion Botanic Garden Christmas influenced centerpiece. I used two Brandy Snifters for low arrangements and they are filled with matching flowers. The rattan reindeer is from Crate and Barrel, I bought it when I was single 3o years ago and didn’t have a Christmas tree. The shot glass is a tequila shooter from my niece’s wedding. I will probably use some taper candles on each side of the snifters at dinner.

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Here is a close up of the snifter arrangement. We have in dark green, Japanese Yew (Podocarpus macrophylla), in red and yellow, Heliconias, in the red Shrimp Plant (Justicia brandegeana), the pink spikes are Tropical Red Salvia, white hanging over the edges is Sweet Begonia and finally some Asian Sword Fern.

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The shot glass is sporting Pom Pom Asters and a sprig of Copper Fennel. The stems were too short for anything else.

To wrap up the holiday arrangements here is my front door Christmas Swag:

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The Swag is composed of Saw Palmetto, Brazilian Pepperberries, Frazier Fir, a dried Miniature Pineapple and dried Bromeliad flowers.

Christmas 2016 is a wrap!

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In A Vase on Monday-Chrismukkah

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This year Christmas Eve and the first day of Hanukkah fall on December 24, the media have christened the date Chrismukkah, which I suppose sounds better than Hanukmas.

In honor of the season and Chrismukkah, I have done two arrangements, one in Christmas colors, red and green and another in traditional Hanukkah colors, blue, white and silver. Being perpetually and cursedly curious, I wondered about the origin of the color schemes.

According to Cambridge University the Christmas color scheme could go back to the Celts who used a red and green tree to mark boundaries. Here is the link, Who color coded Christmas. More research tells me the Hanukkah colors are based on the Israeli flag, why blue.

Now that we know the origins of the colors, here is the Hanukkah arrangement. The silver goblet is an heirloom from my mother’s collection and the flowers are in blue and white – Pom-Pom Asters (inspired by Cathy, our hostess) I started some seed in September and now have blue, white and perhaps pink Pom-Pom Asters, who knew they would grow in Florida in the winter.? The Asters are thriving, but alas, so far my other IOVOM flowers, the Cactus Zinnias are a disappointment. Another inspiration, White Italian Sunflowers are going, but they are showing signs of mildew, time will tell. The other blue members of this arrangement are Evolvulous, Blue Daze the annual peeking out here and there. The White Begonias are Sweet Begonias, a perennial here, the silver flowers are from Flapjack Kalanchoes. Deep plum foliage along the edges is from Purple Oxalis, from my neighbor. I think this plant may be the common thread between all of us. Asian Sword Ferns provide a bit of green.

 

Here is the Christmas arrangement, the original thought that it looked sort of non tropical. Then, the white Bridal Veil Plumeria is a bit difficult to explain. The dark green Yew is Japanese Yew, Podocarpus macrophyllus. Unabashedly tropical as are the red berries of the Brazilian Pepper, outlawed years ago as invasive, but determined to stay around, it is sold as Pink Peppercorn the world over and I have not eaten one of the berries near my house, but many birds have – and on the Brazilian Peppers go, The red striped foliage is from Martin Bromeliads and the ferny foliage is Copper Fennel. I think I have cut more of this than we have eaten, though it is tasty. The vase is an old Brandy snifter from my husbands ‘flaming things in a glass phase’. Go figure. Drinking flaming liquids is not my area of interest.

So, there we go. Happy Holidays to all.

In A Vase on Monday – Bus Redux

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Last year during the holidays I made an arrangement in this biscuit tin. A friend of my husband had brought cookies from the UK, my husband ate the cookies and I used the tin as a vase.

This year I decided to go as tropical as possible and keep a green, red and white theme. The result is reasonably festive and has a large variety of plant material included.

The tin is deep, so I nestled three bottles from drinking water inside with the tops cut off, then filled them with water and made three matching arrangements in the bottles. I feel certain I would regret filling the tin with water (or the furniture would)

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The arrangement includes: in red and yellow Parrotflower (Heliconia psittacorum), the red flowers hanging over the edge are Turks Cap Hibiscus (Malvaviscus penduliflorus), foliage hanging over the sides is Sweet Begonia (Begonia ‘Alba’). The dark green foliage in the back of the arrangement is Snake Plant or Mother In Law’s Tongue (Sanseveria something, runs wild here), the white striped foliage is from ‘Martin’ Bromeliad. Whoever Martin is, he has come up with an amazing bromeliad, red striped in shade and white striped in sun thriving in both places. The ferns are the everpresent invasive Asian Sword Fern and finally, the conifer like bits are from Firecracker Plant (Russelia)

Here is last year’s bus, a much different look:

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Things are looking festive around my house, even if we don’t have a Christmas tree yet. Here are all the arrangements:

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They are not all living in the foyer, this was a holiday portrait. The watering can is on the screen porch and the basket in the living room.