In A Vase Last Friday

June 26, 2015 vase 001


We enjoyed this vase of flowers last Friday evening; and Saturday morning, my beloved computer refused to boot.

That is the short version of the story.  The computer came home with us this evening, and we are getting re-acquaited.  Let’s just say nothing works quite like it did.  AND none of my usual websites, not even WordPress, have opened properly on the first try… or even on the third.

It is a mystery what happened to all of my settings over the past several days during the ‘diagnostics.’

I’ve spent the evening finding workarounds, looking up passwords, assuring the browsers that my websites are safe places to visit, and desperately clicking links to try to get online life back to normal.


June 26, 2015 vase 006~

I would like to re-boot this story back to Friday, when I had such an interesting time gathering these flowers for the vase.  The dark purple leaves and flowers are Basil.

This beautiful purple Basil grows in a huge pot on our deck.  I cut it in late afternoon, and found bees still pursuing the flowers as I cut and dunked the stems into a tall glass of water.  I had to shoo them before heading back inside.

In fact everything in this little vase, with the possible exception of the roses, feeds our pollinators.  There is Kent’s Beauty ornamental Oregano and bronze Fennel, also loved by bees and butterflies, tucked in with the Basil and roses.

Gathering this bouquet reminded me that we can all plant for the pollinators, even in tight circumstances.  If we only have room for a pot or two on a landing or balcony, we still can join the effort to support these beautiful and important creatures.

I remember vividly my days living in apartments and condos, with no garden to call my own.  But somehow I always managed at least a pot or a hanging basket.  Some might use the term obsessed, but flowers bring me joy.


June 26, 2015 vase 009


There is still plenty of time to purchase summer herbs and flowers, if you would like to plant a pot for the pollinators in your neighborhood.  Most of these plants have gone on sale now and are already in bloom.  Some are quick to germinate from seed.

You will have greater success if you plant several plants together in the largest pot your circumstances allow.  It is easier to manage the soil, and you get a nicer effect in a pot of at least 20″ diameter.

Here is a short list of plants you might like to try this summer to draw in bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and other pollinating insects.  These plants enjoy full sun, but most will grow with at least six hours of direct sun each day.  You will be amazed and delighted how much life gathers to enjoy your flowers.


Basil, Thyme, Sage, Germander, Mint, Oregano, Fennel, Dill, Lavender, scented Pelargonium, Hyssop, Nasturtium and Lemon Balm.


Fuschias, Pelargoniums and Geraniums, Lantana, Petunias, Begonias, Calibrachoas, Zinnias, Coleus flowers, Salvias and Angelonia.

Any combination of these herbs and flowering plants will bring beauty to your space, and will help support nectar loving insects.  Many will produce seeds for birds to enjoy, as well.  You will often see goldfinches eating Basil and Zinnia seeds, for instance.

Whether in a pot, or in a vase, these flowers offer us delicious scents, saturated color, and elegant form.  I hope you are enjoying all the beauty summer offers us.


June 26, 2015 vase 007~

Woodland Gnome 2015


About woodlandgnome

Lifelong teacher and gardener.

14 responses to “In A Vase Last Friday

  1. I wondered about your absence… sorry to hear about your computer problems, a nightmare!
    Love your vase, the orange and purple look well together. I grew one of the those oregano plants a couple years ago, but it wasn’t hardy and I haven’t seen it for sale since. It is a neat one that garnered lots of inquiries. Still plugging away at the renovation and hoping to finish by tomorrow. I’m so ready to wrap it up!

    • Dear Eliza,
      I have missed chatting with you. Wonderful that you are finishing up your project. Any more deer nibbling? I thought of you when I discovered my Oakleaf Hydrangea defoliated on Tuesday morning. It has been left alone since I moved it outside in early spring, but they got it after sunset on Monday. I’ve been spraying it, but obviously our heavy rains washed the protection away. It has been a long road back with the computer, and now I have several other irons in the fire taking time, as well. I hope to soon return to a normal routine of writing and posting. The O. Kent’s Beauty isn’t reliable here, but I was pleasantly surprised to find several returned. They are late to emerge, but they survived winter. It is hard to find them. The first one I’ve seen all season was on a clearance table last week! I’ve potted it up with a lemon Thyme and a Zonal geranium. We’ll see how they do together 😉 Hardy or not, they are fun to grow and bring in lots of winged traffic 😉 Giant hugs, WG

  2. I rationalize that the continual learning process accompanying computer use will keep our minds sharp as long as we need them. Doesn’t prevent me from directing a few well-placed oaths from time to time (at both the machine and my mind). Lovely bouquet.

    • Thank you, Rickii. Finally figured out that after three days with Geeks my computer lost its awareness of time, and reset itself to January 2008. Every time I tried to access a website, it was getting totally confused over the security certificate date. Imagine that- Once I reset the calendar and clock, it got with the program again! Yes, it keeps us in problems solving mode, doesn’t it? How are you doing with the obscene heat in Portland, Rickii? Basil loves heat, but I do not 😉 Giant hugs, WG

  3. It is amazing how quickly computers have simply become part of our everyday lives. I am lucky to only have to call one of my sons to help when glitches occur. I hope you get everything back to normal soon. Your flowers and herbs are beautiful in this display, I really enjoyed them. I do so agree that no matter how small our ‘garden’, we can all offer some pollinator sustenance for our beleaguered pollinating creatures.

    • Thank you, Peggy . I’m glad you enjoyed the herbs and flowers . The Basil smells amazing with cut flowers indoors. I had also made pesto for our pizza . What fragrance ! So many settings got changed in the repair shop that I am still working to sort things out . Best wishes , WG

  4. farseems

    So glad you are back, but sorry to hear about the headache the computor is giving you.

    • Thank you 😉 If you’ve sent photos, I’ve missed. Still playing ‘catch up’ here. I have a promised to visit your garden tomorrow to make certain all is well in your absence. Giant hugs, WG

  5. Marilyn Avis

    So sorry to hear about your computer glitches but your post is, per norm, excellent!

    Know your efforts are appreciated!

    Marilyn Avis

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