In a Vase on Monday


Storm Angus ripped through southern England this weekend – winds of 80 mph were recorded about a mile along the coast from here. It cocked a snook at our neighbourhood and ripped the remaining leaves from the deciduous trees, together with a fair few branches, and needles off the pines. It flattened fence panels and snapped trees from hedgerows into roads. The sea was wild yesterday morning – several cross-channel ferries rolled about on the huge waves, unable to come in to harbour, and a Coastguard helicopter winched crew from a cargo ship after it collided with a barge carrying rocks near Dover. That must’ve got the adrenalin pumping – the winds were almost 100 mph out there.

And the noise..! None of our household slept much on Saturday night. The chimneys howled, the rain sounded as though someone was throwing buckets of gravel at the windows and I swear the house actually shook. It had calmed down by yesterday afternoon but today it has been wet and windy again, although less fierce. I hope this isn’t going to be the pattern of weather this  winter. Parts of the UK suffered dreadful flooding in recent winters and the main train line from Dover to London was only reopened a few months ago after being closed for months and months to repair last winter’s storm damage. Bright, crisp, frosty weather is what I love. And snow. A few snow days would be lovely.

Our garden is a sorry sight. A heavy oak bench was tipped onto the strawberry patch and the outdoor table-tennis table was flattened on the back lawn. Branches and twigs and leaves are scattered everywhere. It’s a mess. There is very little colour (other than brown and green). Little pink cyclamen flowers are still dotted about looking cheery, their leaves now unfurling, but that’s about it. There was a clump of Hesperantha coccinea with several blooms looking good before the weekend but they’re now bedraggled and ripped. I snipped the remaining flower stems to bring indoors earlier, together with a few fern fronds. Ferns are a group of plants about which I know next to nothing, other than I quite like them. I don’t know which species of fern this is but it’s looking good, with its sori (clumps of spores) prominent on the undersides of the leaves. Any suggestions?

This week’s ‘vase’ is a bit dull, I’m afraid, and I nearly didn’t bother posting it but I liked the shadows and patterns, and it’s the taking part that counts, isn’t it? The coffee pot is in the photo for no other reason than it was in the shot 🙂 I’m sure there are much more interesting vases over at Cathy’s Rambling in the Garden to see.

Wishing you a calm, peaceful week.


13 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday

  1. Yes, it was bad here in Torbay, too, but it seems not quite as bad as you have had it. As you say, the garden is a mess, most of the leaves are now off our walnut tree.
    But I do like your Monday floral display. Simple it might be, but it’s beautiful against those white tiles, and the coffee is an attractive ‘prop’ even if it wasn’t actually placed specially for the shot!
    I have some flowers on my own post this week, not that roses are autumn flowers, but the lovely apricot colour is slightly autumnal, at a pinch!
    Margaret P


  2. What a scary storm, you are right we seem to get more of them these days. But then turbulent weather is a sign of global warming so I expect we will have to get used to them. My hesperantha have finished blooming now, how nice that you found one to make a nice bright highlight for your arrangement. Your fern looks like a polypodium. I love ferns too but I struggle with their names.


  3. Yikes, it sounds as though you’ve borne the brunt of the storm. We’ve had a day of heavy rain here, but no wind to speak of. Well done for finding a few things for your vase despite it all. I hope you don’t suffer any more damage and that the garden is easily tidied. CJ xx


  4. Hundred mile per hour winds! Your poor garden. At least you and your family are unscathed. I like your simple arrangement a lot, as much for your photography as for the materials themselves. I can’t help with the fern ID – sadly, ferns have proven to be difficult to grow here.


  5. Yes, wet and blustery all day here today but nothing like the south coast, although I am sure there will be localised flooding by tomorrow. Hope Angus is done with you now and there will be no further damage. And your fern fronds ARE interesting with their pattering of spores and the shadows they cast – having fewer blooms makes us look closer at the seemingly plainer alternatives. Thanks for sharing, Sam


  6. We had a storm like that one last week here, with gusts up to about 70 where I live, and up to 94 mph on the mountain peak. I hope everyone came through your storm okay. I really like ferns. I find them interesting. I remember when I was a little girl, my father taught me to rub the underside of fern leaves, where the spores are, on my skin and clothing when we were in the woods, to repel insects. He said that Native Americans did this. I don’t know the science behind it, but I remember that it helped a lot. I hope you have a good week ahead, Sam.


  7. I thought of you Sam when I read about the collision and rescue mission. Phew, what a wild weekend of weather it was. Ferns are so interesting – sculptural and retaining their green. I planted a curve of Polystichum setiferum in front of the pear tree so when the leaves are down there is still green to see. I hope when the storm has subsided you will find the garden isn’t as damaged as you first thought. Oh, and really beautiful light and shade photos too. Wishing you a calm and peaceful week.


  8. I can’t think how I didn’t notice this storm that everyone’s talking about! It was a bit gloomy and windy here on Saturday and, I suppose, a tiny bit blustery on the M40 on Sunday – I must have been in more of a hibernating mood than I realised! Poor you, I think the sleepless Saturday night sounds quite scary. The leaves are all off the trees here though and the veg patch is looking a little dishevelled but there are still achilleas, calendula and scabious blooming which is quite bonkers. Like you, I hope that the winter is not too severe and nothing like the storms of last year. I’m not sure that some communities could take much more of a bashing.


  9. It sounds as if your weekend was quite exciting and terrifying at the same time! I love a good storm, but being so far inland we rarely get one. On the other hand I am always terrified for my garden and our trees! Your vase is an inspiration to us all to keep searching for vase ingredients even now that the odds against us are rising. The light and the shadows in your photos are indeed lovely. Have a calm week Sam!


  10. I like your Monday vase Sam, it looks rather stylish. Love ferns but know nothing about them, other than that they have been around forever, much longer than flowering plants. I am glad the storm has passed, it can be frightening if the house picks up the howling winds. I still remember a storm from my childhood, it was a winter storm with snow. Hope not too much damage has been reported (I am still avoiding the news). We have that crisp cold weather you long for, it is fab but makes the bike commute a bit chilly. x


  11. So sorry to hear of your storm damage. I completely missed monday flowers this week as I was stuck in the floods and couldn’t get home. My veg plot flooded. Bit calmer here now and I’m running round trying to catch up. I love your fern and hesperantha arrangement. All the best. Karen


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