Oppressive heat has settled over Virginia. It is wet heat, with dew points so high each breath is filled with steam.
Our torrential rain yesterday afternoon, and more showers overnight, have the garden well-hydrated; no watering chores for me today.
But the sun comes out after each wave of rain, sending the heat index back up to well over 100F.
We spent this muggy day inside, sitting under fans with tall glasses full of ice and sparkling water. The air conditioner hums. Blinds and screens block the relentless sun from pouring through our windows.
It is still in the 90’s out there, and any cooling tonight prepares us for hotter weather tomorrow.
And yet it is Monday.
I appreciate Cathy’s faithfulness in hosting “In A Vase On Monday” . She always has something beautiful to share. With the garden full of flowers, I couldn’t let the weather discourage me from joining again today.
I planted Calla lilies some years ago in pots. They grow outside all summer, and I bring the pots inside to the garage each autumn. I enjoy these long, elegant stems and casually shaped simple flowers.
But the wind and rain yesterday bent many of the flowers and a few of the leaves nearly to the ground.
Callas last quite a while in a vase, and so I rescued them to fill our vase today.
My daughter gave me the rose quartz obelisk many years ago. Our mood today requires simple, loose and cool.
Do you enjoy Calla lilies? I admire them, and was intrigued with the clumps the size of Pampas grass blooming on the Oregon coast in April. These clumps were positively gigantic; taller than a child, and blooming months ahead of ours.
Most Calla lilies are hardy in Zones 8-10. Those of us living in cooler climates must either bring them in each autumn, or treat them like annuals.
But I’ve since found Zantedeschia aethiopica, a Calla hardy to our Zone 7a, at Plant Delights Nursery in Raleigh, NC. I’ve just planted a clump of Z.”White Giant” which has the potential to grow to 72″ tall. We’ll see….
Its leaves are beautifully spotted, and I am looking forward to watching it grow. Its flowers will be classic white. If there are blooms this year, they will definitely find their way into a Vase on Monday.
Thanks for your post on calla lillies, they are becoming very popular in the UK now, you have encouraged me to look some out. The colours and shape are exceptional.
Thank you for visiting, Noelle. I’m actually wondering why more gardens don’t include them. They are very easy to grow and so lovely. It may be because they aren’t easy to find, or they look too exotic. I hope you can find some for your garden. Do watch for hardier varieties (to USDA Zone 7) that you can plant and leave in the ground over winter. The clump keeps getting larger and better with each passing year 😉 Most of the tubers That I’ve found advertised are hardy in Zones 8-10. Best wishes, WG
Beautiful. I do like calla lilies and I like the way you staged the arrangement. I’m in zone 7b (Chapel Hill, NC) and we’re having similar oppressive weather. Sounds like you’re doing your best to stay cool. Susie
Susie, We are sharing this heat, and it looks like we’re going to share the next round of storms heading this way, too. Do you ever go over to the open house events at Plant Delights near Raleigh? Thank you for the kind words on the arrangement. We are still enjoying it 😉 I moved one of the potted Calla lily plants into the ground today and I’m anxious to see what it does and how it performs compared to the potted ones. I really like these Callas, and may plan to plant more of them next year. Hope you are enjoying lots of tall cool beverages, too 😉 We are surviving on Trader Joe’s Power 7 juice mixed into sparkling water over ice. ❤ ❤ ❤
I visited Plant Delights for the first time last fall with my garden club and had a great tour (although my purchases didn’t survive the winter). I used to read Tony Avent’s garden columns in the Raleigh News and Observer many years ago and always found them entertaining and informative.
The catalog is definitely entertaining. I’m glad you said that about your purchases not surviving. I’ve been sadly discarding plants I bought from them last year– hardy in this zone– which didn’t make it. So disappointing, especially considering their prices! One of the plants I lost was a fern, well planted and protected, which certainly should have survived. I’m not sure what the problem might be. I love their selection and catalog, and am hoping for a better experience with the plants I just received from them. A garden club tour of PD must have been a fantastic program 😉
I now have a wee cousin whose name is Calla but I loved them long before that. I have the pure white ones, and live for the day when there are enough to pick an armload and still enjoy them in the garden. I may pluck a single calla lily for a vase today. The form is so distinctive that it is perhaps best shown off as a solo act.
You are right, Rickii. My husband loves these flowers, and was upset that I cut so many. Had then not been already knocked down by the weather, I would not have cut 4. It was so sad to see them lying on the ground. These are rescues. Do you grow the very tall variety I saw in Lincoln City, Rickii? I’ve never seen clumps of Calla so large!
It’s the same one, I’m sure…but they grow much larger at the coast.
Everything is better at the coast, right??? BTW, are you familiar with the Findhorn literature from Scotland? Something tells me you know this…. 😉
They are stunning! I need to add this to my garden!
They are so easy to grow, Koko. You will love them 😉
oh yes, I like callas a well ! what did you expect ! 😀
😉 Now I”m on a hunt to find your B. ‘Muddy Waters’ on this side of the pond….
Do you know if you can sent plants from Europe to the US ?? I could sent you some cuttings by airmail.
I would love that, Gwennie, and thank you for the thought. There are probably laws which require inspections of any plant materials. When I mail parcels to loved ones in Europe it can take weeks for the package to travel. That is why I’m going to look for the Begonia from a US dealer. Thank you so very much, though. WG
I hope you’ll find one soon !
It will turn up eventually 😉 Logees has some pretty ones, but nothing quite like yours. Surely it is in cultivation somewhere in North America 😉
Good luck with it !
Such elegance, WG – and well done for rescuing the blooms. And what were the slabs the vase sat on?
Thank you, Cathy. There is a glass tray stacked on the wonderful board Michael Laico made for us. I rather like them together 😉 Do you think Calla lily will now send up new blossoms to replace those cut? Thank you for visiting ❤ WG
The glass try is gorgeous. Hope you get some more calla blooms!
I am considering dividing the tubers now crowded in the pot in the photo. I hope it is OK to divide them this time of year, and believe more space for each might yield more blooms….
The flowers are lovely, but the heat and humidity sounds terrible! We have also had several very hot and damp days, but it is cooler so far this week… a little relief before the next wave! Stay cool!
So glad you have a small break from the heat. Normally we build up to a few days like this in August, and by then we’ve acclimated a bit to the heat and humidity levels. We broke a long standing record yesterday, and the forecasters warn of the same today. We wonder how the rest of summer will unfold… Best wishes, WG
Elegant and understated. I do hope your beautiful lillies survive the heat. I wonder if I could grow them in Scotland?
Joanna, you certainly could grow Calla lily in pots in Scotland. You would need to bring them in during winter just as we do. Calla lilies originate in South Africa. They don’t seem to mind our heat and humidity. These are tough and resilient for all of their elegance 😉 Thank you for visiting today ❤ WG
Thank you – I think I might well try it then. Pots is a good idea.
Very evocative of the weather you are enjoying (enduring!) – and so graceful. I particularly liked seeing your callas in pots, dotted in the planting (such a wonderful blue to the pots!). I bought a calla this year because it’s one of my husband’s favourites. I moaned a lot because now I have to nurture it indoors over the winter – but your ‘pot pictures’ are encouraging – I think he’d enjoy that!
Nurture is such a warm and caring description, Cathy, and implies so much more than I ever do for these poor Callas over winter. I have other things planted with them in the pots, and so the pot gets minimal watering to carry it through. They sit clustered together (on a plastic tablecloth, and in shallow trays) on the garage floor from late October through April to keep them from freezing. If you can manage that, you can keep them. 😉 I’m glad you enjoyed the pots. We collect blue pots here and plant many things in pots others might put directly into the soil. Thank you for visiting today 😉 WG