Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Springtime Arrangement

So there are times during the course of the year when the garden is just teeming with tantalizing blossoms to cut and arrange. The middle of May is one of those times, and this Farmer relishes the middle ground belle epoch when Spring is still firing on all cylinders and Summer is catalyzing to be great.

The softness of Spring, tinged with the sharpness of new growth, new life, is such a beautiful contrast. Pastels and creams juxtaposed with chartreuse make for terrific combos this time of year. My foxgloves have heralded the vernal equinox and are on their decrescendo whereas the roses and hydrangeas of summer are just warming up to crescendo into nature’s symphony of color, texture, and scent. I cannot resist the opportunity to mix the two simultaneous seasonal blooms that occur this time of year in the Deep South.



May is a bridge month where we are hot yet not forgetful of the cooler nights from April. June, July, and August are right around the corner and promise to be hot – indicated by May’s warm days. As the traditional blossoms of Spring begin to fade and give way to the classics of Summer, I just can’t wait to mix the blooms and branches that abound and create a homage to such a season as this. We call September an Indian Summer, and I feel that this year, we’ve had an extended Spring… an Indian Spring if I may…


Foxgloves, newly blue hydrangeas, roses, spirea, curly willow, and huechera meld together in a cream ware urn to create seasonal tribute. Fronds of Autumn fern add texture and a whisper of Summer’s bronzed hues. The hydrangeas are not completely blue, and their creamy centers pick up the cream color of the foxgloves, whose hanging bells remind me of whipped crème fraiche with speckles of vanilla beans.


A few more fronds of Kimberly Queen fern add rigidity and structure as well as the quintessential Spring Green color. For drama, curly willow branches meander from the apex of the arrangement and topple down through the composition with grace. Garden roses, with a scent of their own divinity, arch forth in sprays of pink to deep coral and give promise of more beauty to come with a few buds clustered in the mix.


Floppy leaves of ‘Key Lime’ huechera spill over the sides of the jardinière as the ruffles of this Springtime ensemble. More chartreuse from the leaves of ‘Lemon Princess’ spirea and its rusty coral florets complement and contrast at the same time thus enduring this little powerhouse of a plant to this gardening Farmer. Drought tolerant, seasonally interesting, and super in bouquets, sprireas and this one in particular should have a home in your garden.


I just love the ability to step outside my front door, or back or side door, and gather a bouquet and arrange the blossoms into a celebration of the season. With a carefully planned garden and an executed scheme for cutting, your garden can be your own florist shop. Now after enjoying this arrangement for days, I’m thinking of my next one…no two arrangements are ever alike in the Farmer’s garden, for each season, each week, each day provides a chance to arrangement that moment in time’s floral bounty. Capture the essence of each season and celebrate the beauty of Spring and Summer’s courtship – I hope you’ll be as thrilled as I am when the garden is just brimming with flowers to cut and arrange! From this Farmer’s garden to yours…happy gardening and arranging!

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