In a Vase, on Monday – Fireworks

It’s June, and for the garden that means it’s time for Iris, then Lupines, then Peonies to shine – all in quick succession until the coneflowers and other summer perennials start to bloom. My vases today have a bit of everything but the stars, of course, are the peonies.

Tall cobalt blue French iris and paler Siberian Iris remind me of fireworks shooting high in the sky while three peony varieties explode a bit lower. Ox Eye Daisies – often called Moon Daisies, I’ve learned thanks to other IAVOM participants, add smaller accent explosions.
I spotted this rather large moth hiding in the folds of Big Red (my made up name for this gorgeous deep Merlot variety) but I didn’t notice the spider until I started to look through the photos I had taken. I imagine there is now a tiny white arachnid spinning a web somewhere in the house…
I let the daisies self seed pretty much all over, and pull them after flowering. Leucanthemum vulgare, seen here behind an asparagus spear about to flower, is considered an invasive weed in many parts of the country. Understandable, but it’s a pretty sight when you stumble across an uncultivated field with large splashes of white coming up amongst tall grass.
This peony – variety unknown but I call it Cotton Candy – blows me away every year because I fail to remember, until it’s wide open in a vase, how spectacular it is. And large – a good seven inches / 18 cm across.

My ikebana vase this week features Lupine offshoots, thyme in flower and a sprig from a Royal Purple Smoke Tree – Cotinus coggygria.
The honey bees were literally falling all over themselves as they covered the thyme patch over the weekend – they just loved these tiny flowers!
Before the smoke comes tiny yellow flowers. In a few weeks tiny hairs will appear amidst the flower clusters, and when viewed from a distance it will look like billows of pinkish-purple smoke.

These are the vases in my dining room and kitchen this week – at least until Cotton Candy starts to drop petals and pollen! Many thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting IAVOM and giving gardeners around the world an opportunity to share their flower designs. Happy Monday everyone – enjoy the day and stay safe.


  1. Great to be able to bring the garden indoors, albeit with a spider or two. They look great… The vases & flowers I mean.
    I like that ikebana vase. Is that a type of vase or place of purchase?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ikebana is both a type of flower arranging (Japanese, simple and elegant – I’m not doing it justice) and a vase intended for that type of flower arranging (generally short and round with a frog – a spikey thing – at the bottom to hold up the stems).


  2. French iris really is elegant, and tall! I am getting to like it. I do not believe that I have ever encountered it. I probably would have remembered it.
    I do not notice our smokebush in bloom. There are only two here; one bronze and one gold. I just featured it recently, but the smoke was already there. I pollard ours, both to enhance foliar color, but also because it is in a confined spot. It blooms on schedule anyway, even though there are no old stems remaining.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Both vases are lovely. I envy you both the peonies and the lupines, neither of which I’m able to grow in my climate (despite periodic attempts to do so). I had to smile at the “wildlife” in the closeup photo of your Big Red peony – I make similar discoveries on a regular basis when reviewing my photos but I almost never find the wayfarers when I go looking for them after the fact.

    Liked by 1 person

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