A floral arrangement for ‘Six on Saturday’

Hello, and welcome to my blog! The garden is really hitting its stride now, with just a ton of growth everywhere. It is fun to watch the changes happen, seemingly overnight! If you follow me on Instagram (you do, right?), you’ll know that I capture a lot of the garden in my stories. I like to take a walk around the garden first thing in the morning – well, right after I feed the chickens. It is a peaceful time to listen to the birds and see what’s happened in the garden, and of course to note what needs to be done. Before I get into more details about what is happening in the garden, let me just say that I’ll be joining The Propagator again this week for his ‘Six on Saturday’ meme. If you click the link, you can find lots of other bloggers joining in, too! O.K., so here are my six:

Arch update 9 July 2021
Pumpkin arch

1 My pumpkin arch. This is probably my favorite item in the garden. My husband ‘made’ it for me this year (the arches were bought, but he added fencing material over it and staked it all, in order for it to be able to support pumpkins). A lot of work went into it! The pumpkin plants on either side of it are flowering and there are a bunch of fruit, too. I have been weaving the ends through the fencing, working it up towards the top. Just watching its progress is fun! This entire area had a complete makeover this year. Here is what it looked like in July 2018:

Pumpkin beds July 2018
Pumpkin patch July 2018

The pear tree on the right is the same that is on the left in the first picture. You’ll notice that I grew pumpkins and sunflowers then, too! I think the garden looks much nicer now 🙂

Strawberry Hill roses with Iris in background

2 Strawberry Hill rose, a David Austin variety. I have it on my front gate, and to me the color is just so delicate and pretty. Thankfully, blackspot hasn’t taken over this one (yet?). The fuzzy purple in the background is my late blooming iris.

Strawberry Hill rose single flower
Strawberry Hill, a David Austin Rose

3 Blueberries! We love eating blueberries, and I have to say that it is lovely growing them, too. Many years the birds enjoy them before us, but we’ll usually get some, too. I moved these this year as part of the big garden makeover, and they seem to be happier. Fingers crossed we get to eat the blueberries before the birds get them!

Blueberry shrub July 2021
Blueberries upclose July

4 Lavender poppies. This variety came to my garden through a friend. She shared a few with me as she thought I’d like them, which of course I do! That was a bunch of years ago. These current ones, and most of them in my yard now, were not planted, but came via my compost. I always throw the spent poppies into my compost. If there was any doubt as to how the poppies end up all over my yard, I have two brand new beds this year, that I didn’t have any poppies in last year (so no chance for self seeding). But both beds were given a ton of my compost. And now I have a ton of poppies! Good thing I like them!

Lavender Poppies in Birch tree bed

5 Coral poppies. This variety was given to me about 5 years ago. At one point I thought they wouldn’t return, as I had so few one year! But I had nothing to fear. While the lavender ones are predominant this year, the coral were predominant last year. It’s only fair to take turns, right? 🙂

coral poppies in rose bed

6 Floral arrangement. Today I was supposed to weed (haha! every day could be a weeding day!) but I found myself walking around the garden gathering flowers to make an arrangement. It is fun when the mood strikes, to create something from the garden!

Flower arrangement with lady's mantle

I started with poppy seeds, I think that they are so neat! It’s nice to have that unusual shape. Then I added lady’s mantle. I don’t usually like lady’s mantle, and I often pull it out of the garden (it grows and spreads like a weed). But I really liked the color here, and the texture.

Flower arrangement close up peony

I was surprised to see that I still have a few Sarah Bernhardt peony left in the garden. The smaller blooms were perfect. I also used the late blooming iris. Here I’ve used 3 that aren’t open yet.

flower arrangement cream roses and peony

And finally, I used Lichfield angel roses, another David Austin variety. They are a lovely cream color, although they have a peach tint before they bloom. Some of the flowers were quite heavy. The one in the picture above is actually resting on the peony bloom.

Flower arrangement side view

This is more of a side view. The vase is an antique, one of a set, that my mother gave to me a number of years ago. It is one of my favorite gifts from her and I love to fill it with flowers.

And that is my Six for Saturday! I hope you’ve enjoyed them. I know I am enjoying being a part of this meme. See you next week!

In Peace,

In a Vase on Monday (or Tuesday?): Friendship, Fellowship, and Food

Special dinner with flowers on the table

Special dinner with flowers on the table

I have lived in Ireland for almost seven years.  Really, this is home.  But I will always refer to the United States as “home” because that is where my heart also is. It isn’t an either/or thing for me.  I love both places. What I miss absolutely the most from my U.S. home are my friends and family.

Selection of Irish Cheeses

Selection of Irish Cheeses

It is tough being apart, especially when those people are as special as they are. Do you have friends and family like that? I have been so blessed with the friends and family that I have in my life.  Definite keepers.

add some candles...

add some candles…

One group of friends that I made “back home” was through our church.  I helped to start-up a women’s group when I first moved to the area and boy was that wonderful! We had a very original name: The Women of I.C. (Immaculate Conception parish).  🙂

Roses & Lady's mantle (Alchemilla)

Roses & Lady’s mantle (Alchemilla)

We were a diverse group of women. Some were stay-at-home moms with young children, some worked, some were grandmothers and everyone was welcome.

Colm De Ris Pottery

Colm De Ris Pottery

I miss that group of women… lots.  So I was delighted when one of those special ladies said she was coming to Ireland!  She has also moved away from where we used to live, so there was so much to catch-up on.  But what we both realised was how special those bonds were that we had created through the women’s group, that fellowship.  It is not something easily replicated.

roses, astrantia, lady's mantle

roses, astrantia, lady’s mantle

Given that it is still going strong 16 years later, I have to say there is something special about it to facilitate that.

lucky to have a sunny day

lucky to have a sunny day

We had a special dinner for my friend and her husband.  A traditional Kerry (lamb) pie.   As we set the table I decided that I would like a few flowers from the garden on the table, too.

My roses are just starting to bloom, and the Lady’s Mantle (alchemilla)  has popped up in more than a few places!  I believe the burgundy coloured flower is astrantia.  It is new in my garden as it was given to me from a friend just a few weeks ago.

Rose pink in vase

Yes the flowers were perfect, the food delicious, and the fellowship was priceless.

I hope you, too, have such amazing friends in your life.  …and if not, maybe start-up a women’s group!

As always, the “In a Vase on Monday” meme is hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the garden.  Stop by and see what other vases people have created from flowers in their gardens.  https://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com/2015/06/22/in-a-vase-on-monday-summer-breeze-makes-me-feel-fine/

In Peace,






In a Vase on Monday: A playful gathering of flowers

Gathering flowers on a sunny day

At least once a week I now look forward to collecting flowers from the garden and bringing them inside for us to enjoy in our kitchen.  I rarely did this before, because really I love seeing them outside.  But being a part of the Rambling in the Garden’s meme “In a Vase on Monday” has brought about my new weekly activity (read: obsession)!

Japanese Anemone

Japanese Anemone

My ten year old daughter helped me this time.  It would have been quite a collection of colours if I’d picked all the flowers she wanted!  But she was happy enough, instead, to hold the flowers, in a hand held bouquet as we walked through the yard and cut the flowers which I picked out (with her approval, of course).

Potentilla (yellow flower)

Potentilla (yellow flower)

I wish I could say that I had it all planned out in my head beforehand. That was not the case, though. It all started with a large sedum flower with a broken stem.  It would be such a shame to leave that in the garden to die.  So pink became the main colour.

Potentilla with Japanese Anemone (some without their petals)

Potentilla with Japanese Anemone (some without their petals)

My potentilla plant has the sweetest yellow flowers.  I had to have that colour in the arrangement!  I also loved the strange shapes of the Japanese Anemone.  They are so interesting looking before they even bloom as well as well after they bloom!

Mallow in front

Mallow in front with some lady’s mantle to the right (underneath the Sedum)

My mallow plant grew quite tall this summer and was blown over and badly broken. I thought that was the end of it, at least for this season.  But we cut it down to a lower level and sure enough, it is full of all new flowers!  I have not been able to really capture the beautiful colour that it is.  The light, bright green of the lady’s mantle is one of my favourite colours! It is popping up in all sorts of places around the yard!  So I was happy to find some that was still young enough to use.

"wild white plant" in the garden

“wild white plant” in the garden

These lovely white flowers are in my “wild flower garden”.  I don’t know their name, but I’d really like to find out because they are so pretty.

Everything arranged and sitting pretty

Everything arranged and sitting pretty

It all came together fairly quickly and easily. You don’t usually have too much time when a child is involved, anyway! The original vase I was using just wasn’t working for me.  I had too many flowers for it.  So out came this rather large, glass ice container (or white wine cooler/champagne cooler).  I have the marbles on the bottom, as a lot of my stems were too short.

In a Vase on Monday: A Playful gathering of flowers

In a Vase on Monday: A Playful gathering of flowers

I really like starting my week like this!  I hope you do, too.  Stop on over to Rambling in the Garden if you’d like to see some other lovely “In a Vase on Monday” posts! http://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com

Have a good week!