In a Vase on Monday: favourite faffing

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I wasn’t sure I’d fit in time for a vase today but happily I finished my work early, popped to the Post Office and returned home in time to pick some flowers, plonk them in a vase and photograph them before the light went. I say happily because this is one of my favourite things to do – pick flowers from the garden, stick them in a jug or vase, faff about a bit and take pictures. My children smile and shake their heads in that slightly patronising but caring way; they think I’m slightly odd.

The light hasn’t been great this afternoon as it’s been heavily overcast, so I took the first photograph in the garden in an attempt to get a good enough shot, and to show you the cherry blossom petals all over the garden – it looks beautiful out there. Kneeling on the path, moving the jug this way and that, trying to get the angle right, I could see that my kids may have a point. Back indoors on the window seat in the bay window the light wasn’t much better, and then our black cat Molly came to investigate so I gave up…

Anyway, here’s one of my favourite flower jugs full of:
:: some stately Aquilegia vulgaris (which is popping up all over the garden; I love the pinks and purples that appear)
:: Centranthus ruber (which is a bit of a thug and grows everywhere, including in the walls and paving but I like it)
:: some Geranium robertianum/Herb Robert (also grows anywhere it can but it’s pretty and it has some brilliant common names like Death-comes-quickly, Pink Pinafore and Stinking Robert. I’m including this as a nod to Alice and her current approach to gardening :-))
:: four of my precious almost-black tulips (which I think are ‘Queen of the Night’)
:: a couple of sprigs of Pulmonaria
:: a few clippings of foliage from a random shrub (unknown; I’m not very good at identifying shrubs).

I’m joining in as usual with Cathy at Rambling in the Garden. Do hop over to see her vase for this week and others from around the globe.


34 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday: favourite faffing

  1. This is so lovely Sam. My deep purple and rich red tulips cheer me up so much when I go down to the allotment that I haven’t picked any lately (note to self: plant MORE for next year) but I did bring home some hawthorn blossom, which I’ve stuck in an old stone bottle on the kitchen windowsill, and those dark pink anemones are still flowering.


    1. Thank you, Sarah. I’m also planning to plant many more tulips for next spring and will definitely look for more dark ones as they are sumptuous. Inspired by you, I’ve planted anemones, including Sylphide, and I think I spotted a few coming up yesterday. I hope all’s well x


  2. It is my favorite thing as well…picking and plonking and I love that word, ‘faffing’. Your garden must be stunning with all those pink petals everywhere! A lovely backdrop and I loved the cat photobombing your picture!


  3. I love the pink petals decorating your lawn. And how I would like to have Aquilegia popping up all over my garden! Of the 3 Aquilegia I planted a few years ago, only one has withstood the challenges imposed by our drought and there’s been no self-seeding. The only plant we share in common is the Centranthus ruber, which is a weed here despite our dry conditions but pretty and thus allowed to remain (as if I could control it).


  4. A lovely vase Sam. I love the dark tulip, Queen of the Night is one of my favourites. My lawn is strewn with petals too. It felt like being in a snow storm.


  5. Centranthus always makes me think of Cornwall where I first saw it.
    I rather like those flowers but it is terribly invasive here.

    When I pick flowers for a posy to a friend, or a vase in the house
    OF COURSE I take faffing photos. That is half the fun. Like you I enjoy photographing bits of the bunch, the details.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That’s a pretty vase of flowers. My garden is a couple of weeks behind yours – the blossom is still on the trees and the Aquilegia vulgaris are sticking up above everything else but not quite on flower.
    I only photograph for my blog when nobody is about so my children can’t ridicule me.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I loved this. We have planted five cherry trees, different varieties, out the front and I hope that, one day, they will sprinkle petals like yours all down the street. I’m also a big fan of aquilegias. They look so fragile and yet are so determined to thrive.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I like to faff too Sam. I’ve never considered picking herb robert for a vase so there’s food for thought. I wasn’t aware of its other common names so am off to investigate forthwith. I’m especially intrigued by ‘Death-come -quickly’ as I don’t think it’s poisonous. I hope not anyway. It’s prolific both in the garden and at the allotment.


    1. The RHS website has a whole list of common names. I’d be interested to know where they originate. I’ve been pulling it out for years but have left some in a wilder bit of the garden as it is pretty with the red stems and delicate flowers. One person’s weed is another’s … and all that!


  9. That is SUCH a dark tulip – and the photo with the equally dark Mollie is so effective. I had valerian at my ex-marital home but it spread so much I wouldn’t want to introduce it here! It’s lovely to have aquilegia coming into flower again, isn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

  10. If only there was a way to make that cherry petal carpet permanent. I know that using a plant’s latin name cuts down on identification confusion, but I love the common names with all their history and color. Thanks for sharing Herb Robert’s aliases. Actually, Herb Robert is a wonderful name itself–so neighborly sounding.


  11. That is such a lovely mix – flowers that rarely flower at the same time here. My centranthus needs a bit longer yet, and my pulmonaria has gone over already. I think your photos are lovely, and if I had children I am sure they would also roll their eyes when I faff around with my weekly vases too! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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