Sunday Dinner: Patience

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“Patience is not sitting and waiting, it is foreseeing.

It is looking at the thorn and seeing the rose,

looking at the night and seeing the day.

Lovers are patient and know that

the moon needs time to become full.”

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Rumi

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“Patience, he thought. So much of this

was patience – waiting, and thinking

and doing things right.

So much of all this, so much of all living

was patience and thinking.”

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Gary Paulsen

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“Patience is power.
Patience is not an absence of action;
rather it is “timing”
it waits on the right time to act,
for the right principles
and in the right way.”

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Fulton J. Sheen

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“He that can have patience can have what he will.”

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Benjamin Franklin 

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Photos by Woodland Gnome 2016

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On A Tray: Beautiful Bouquets

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Inspiration waits everywhere; especially in a good gardening magazine.

Particularly inspiring is the article ‘Beautiful Bouquets’ in the current special edition Plant Issue of Gardens Illustrated magazine.  Plantswoman Anne Townley suggests delicious combinations of plants one might grow together, expecting to later cut them for beautiful and unusual bouquets.

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Clockwise from top left: Violas, Edgeworthia, Artemesia

Clockwise from top left: Ivy, Violas, Edgeworthia, Lavender, Artemesia, Iris, Mahonia, Fennel, Black Eyed Susan.

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Her plant choices are quite idiosyncratic, at least to this Virginian gardener.

The photography for this article was my inspiration, however.  Photographer Andrew Montgomery created a stunning tableau with each combination of plants Ms. Townley selected.  Please follow the link to see these artful vignettes of petal and leaf composed to illustrate this lively article about cutting gardens.

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Clockwise from top left: Viola, Camellia, Cyclamen

Clockwise from top left: Camellia, Viola, Pineapple Sage, Camellia, Cyclamen, Viola, Edgeworthia, Ivy, Rose, Salvia, Hellebore,  Pineapple Mint, scented Pelargonium.

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Emulation remains the highest form of flattery, and so I couldn’t resist assembling a little tableau of my own this morning from what looks fresh in our garden today.

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Part scavenger hunt, part journey of discovery; what a surprisingly diverse collection of leaf and flower waited for me in the garden!

Wandering, cutting and arranging, I quickly realized that most of these bits of horticultural beauty would have grown unnoticed save for this challenge.

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Clockwise from top left: Rosa, 'The Generous Gardener,' Ivy, Viola, Black Eyed Susuans,

Clockwise from top left: Rosa, ‘The Generous Gardener,’ Ivy, Viola, Black Eyed Susan, Rose hips, Mahonia, Fennel, Iris.

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Each newly snipped blossom and leaf delighted me.  Though cut from many different areas of the garden, from pots, beds and shrubs; they harmonize.  What a helpful way to get a ‘read’ on how well the plants in one’s garden go together.

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Clockwise from top left:

Clockwise from top left: Purple Sage, Viola, Rosemary, Pineapple Sage, Lavendar, Dianthus, Vinca minor,  Cyclamen, Viola, Ivy, Salvia, Hellebores, Pineapple Mint, Pelargonium, Camellia

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I could have just sat and admired this tray full of cuttings over a steamy cup of coffee.

But, other projects called, like the bin filled with Brent and Becky’s bulbs, gleaned from their end of season clearance sale, just before the holiday.   We had been granted another good day for planting, and so I didn’t tarry over the tray too long.

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Rather, I recut the stems and tucked them into a vase, floated the blossoms in a bowl, slipped the ivy into a jar of rooting cuttings, and headed back out to the garden.

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Because there were  just one or two stems of each plant on the tray, this is a somewhat unusual vase.  It needed photographing from all sides as each of its ‘faces’ is different.

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I am happy to join Cathy at Rambling In the Garden for her “In A Vase On Monday’ meme this week.  She has created a ‘Moondance’ by the sea; more inspiration, as always!

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Although we are enjoying our little vase this afternoon, my partner and I remain intrigued by the possibilities of simply arranging stems  on a tray.  I plan to tour the garden, tray in hand, at some regular interval from here on just to see what there is to see.

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And, inspired by several excellent articles on garden color  in Gardens Illustrated, I also took my bin of bulbs back out to the garden for a few happy hours of planting today.  Bulbs planted a few weeks ago have already broken ground with their first, tentative leaves.

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Winter blooming Iris have started into growth in this pot with Violas and Moss.

Winter blooming Iris have started into growth in this pot with Violas and Moss.

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I dug new areas and planted Daffodils, Muscari, Leucojum, Cyclamen and more, before covering everything with a fresh coat of compost.

Although imagination is a wonderful thing,  I can’t wait to actually see these new additions grow into the tapestry of our garden in the months ahead.

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Woodland Gnome 2015

 

 

In A Vase On Monday: Summer Garden

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Summer has settled over our garden.  We’ve had several sunny days where temperatures reached the upper 80’s.  A thunderstorm with heavy downpours roared through yesterday afternoon, and more rough weather remains in our afternoon forecast.

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If you’ve not experienced a Virginia summer, you may not understand my point, here.  Those who garden even further south, along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, have had the heat, humidity, insects and afternoon thunderstorms as too frequent visitors to their gardens for a while now.

While spring is savored, summer it to be endured… and survived. 

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Temperatures rise rapidly on sunny days.  This means any real efforts must be made in the garden in early morning or late evening.  One must avoid the unbroken sun, staying as much as possible in the shade.  Wide brimmed hats morph from fashion statement to survival gear.

The roses have no such flexibility.  Which means they begin to droop and wilt as the sun climbs.  Cutting must be accomplished in early morning, and the stems plunged into deep warm water in a shady place while they drink, before arranging them.

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Their fragrance permeates the garden, mixed now with the familiar warm weather fragrances of box, mint and Magnolia.… and freshly mown grass.  Some one or another of the neighbors is cutting grass most every day now, and the fragrance carries on the summer breeze.

Today’s vase reflects early summer in our garden. 

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Cuttings of our native Mountain Laurel, which prefer partial shade, mix with today’s pick of roses.   Also in the vase the first of the white Sage; a stem of Spanish Lavender with its distinctive “rabbit’s ears” flowers; cuttings of perennial Geranium.

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Nearly all of our roses have come into bloom now. 

The Lantana has awakened from its winter rest and is pushing out its new stems for the year.  Most of the figs are showing new growth, finally, and there are flower buds on many of the Hydrangeas.  As the Cannas grow taller our garden will recover its rich tropical, summer wildness.

But the roses, covered in thousands of buds, still rule the garden landscape.  The first of the Peonies bloomed on Friday, but the heat and rain took their toll before they even fully opened.  And so our vase is filled with roses today.

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You may recognize this little antique silver sugar dish from earlier in the spring.  It is a family piece from my mother’s mother.  A little turtle carved from solid moonstone, which came home with me from Oregon last month, sits with the roses alongside a piece of polished rutillated quartz.  All rest on the fabulous board crafted by Michael Laico.

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Please take a moment to visit Cathy, at Rambling in the Garden, who sponsors this Vase meme each week.  You’ll find links in her comments,  left by many other flower gardeners, to their floral creations today.  Cathy is gardening in the West Midlands of Great Britain, and her lovely tulips, and other spring flowers today, reflect that cooler climate.

I hope your garden is filled with spring or early summer flowers today, and that you’ll maybe cut a few stems to enjoy inside.

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I’ve finally realized it is the flowers cut and brought in which are enjoyed the most.  Especially now that we have sequestered ourselves indoors away from the mid-day heat.  Flowers may bloom and burst in the garden without us ever giving them much notice.  But indoors, where we enjoy them at close range, we take time to appreciate their lovely colors and form…. in comfort.

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Woodland Gnome 2015

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In A Vase On Monday: Finally Flowers!

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Finally, there are plenty of flowers to cut for today’s vase! 

Not only are the daffodils opening in clouds of gold, but the first tiny blue and white flowers have appeared on the Vinca Minor.

The fruit trees’ buds have begun to unfold, and the first tiny garnet colored knobs of color are exploding from the solid brown stems of our red bud.

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Once spring begins unfolding its flowers, it just grows more colorful each day!

The flowers and foliage chosen today form associations in the garden.  Vinca carpets the ground beneath the daffodils.  Autumn Brilliance ferns grow in concert with clumps of daffodils in many spots around the garden.

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Daffodils also grow in clumps near many of the roses.  A keen eye might notice the stems of rose foliage tucked into this arrangement.  Although I’m waiting until after the weekend coming to prune, a few nips here and there on a tea rose will not do any lasting harm- even if the snow forecast for next Saturday materializes.

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Daffodils also grow in the back garden, where our fruit trees stand ready to bloom.  Included today are branches from pear, apple, and a large redbud.

What pleasure to wander around making a choice among the many offerings, while breathing in the stirrings of spring.  If you have not yet cut a vase of spring flowers for yourself, I hope you will have that opportunity soon.

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The cobalt blue vase was hand blown by Williamsburg glass artist John Shelton.  We purchased this from him at a show last December.

Maybe you will even feel moved to join Cathy’s Monday Vase meme with photos of a vase filled with what may be growing in your own garden this week.  When you visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden each Monday, you will find links to beautiful floral arrangements from all over the planet in her comments.

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My hopes for this vase are that we will be able to keep it indoors long enough for the fruit blossoms and redbud to fully open.  It is the season of pollen, and just like the beautiful hazelnut branches full of catkins, these may be banished out of doors if the sneezing begins!

Out of doors, or perhaps to a friend’s home….  But for today, we are enjoying this rare treat of the first vase of spring flowers brightening up our home.

Other Monday Vase posts you might enjoy:

Cathy at Words and Herbs

John at A Walk in the Garden

Susie at pbmGarden

Ricki at Sprig to Twig

 

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Woodland Gnome 2015

In A Vase On Monday

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Today’s vase of flowers reflects what is growing and blooming in our garden indoors.

We were thrilled to see the Impatiens, tucked into a pot of Caladium tubers back in November, in bloom this weekend.  These are the first Impatiens flowers we’ve seen since autumn.   We expect these cuttings will root and grow on through the coming summer.

The Caladiums have also decided to offer some fresh winter leaves.  I selected two tiny ones for this vase.  A few Cyclamen flowers and a Jewel Orchid stem complete the arrangement.

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We are happy to enjoy a vase of these bright summer flowers, knowing that at least a few of these stems will grow roots and live on. Our indoor garden offers enough flowers to get us through until the garden outside wakes up to spring.

Today’s vase was purchased from the potter at a show a few years ago.  It is very ‘handmade,’ and eccentric, but we admired its free form exuberance and bright glaze.  Sadly, it is signed only with an initial, and I don’t recall the artist’s name.

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The glass ball off to the side is by Portland, Oregon glass artist Paris Birdwell.   I met her at a show  in Oregon last September, and had to bring this unusual piece home.

You can see our stark winter garden through the window.  The hazel tree is absolutely covered with little catkins dancing around in the breeze.

It just looks cold, doesn’t it? 

Our garden is frozen rock solid now, after a winter storm front swept through Saturday evening, leaving Arctic air in its wake.  Our high today was around 20 F, and all of the waterways around us are freezing.  The Violas I had hoped to cut for the vase today have collapsed in the cold, and snow will cover them by nightfall.  They are hardy, though, and can perhaps  be cut next week, instead.

Today we are content to stay inside, where it’s warm enough for flowers, cats and people to grow on happily, and in comfort.

Please visit Cathy, at Rambling In the Garden, to see the beautiful vase of early spring flowers she brought in from her garden today.  Cathy hosts this Monday Vase challenge each week, and you’ll find links in her comments to vases arranged by many other enthusiastic gardeners.

This is an international challenge, and I always find it interesting to see how the seasons are progressing, elsewhere.  If you’re feeling even a little inspired, please pull together a little vase of your own with whatever you can scavenge locally.  Wonderful surprises wait for you to notice them…..

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Woodland Gnome 2015

Garden Snippings

After a thunderstorm and heavy rain last night, I went looking early this morning for blossoms to snip for an arrangement for a friend. This small arrangement is made from three different varieties of Basil, Pineapple Mint, Lime Queen Zinnias, and a few rose blossoms the deer overlooked in their latest munching.  Since Basil is … Continue reading

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