Sunday, October 8, 2017

Autumn Garden Arrangements

Thank you to everyone who took the time to visit my latest post on Amber's blog last week. It was fun collaborating with her, and fun putting together some of my prior work for a compilation post. One of those individual vignettes mentioned by several of you in the comments was the market basket of greens, which I originally shared in 2015 (click here for that post). I've been wanting to make another seasonal arrangement or two, so I scavenged out in the garden this past week to clip a few components for a couple of easy autumn arrangements.
After snipping several plants, what I came up with is pictured below. Other things cut, but ultimately not used (nor labeled in the photo), are the orange Mexican sunflower blooms (on the brick floor, left) and some wild grapevine with berries (on the step) I had cut on my morning walk. And, check out my containers - still full, just the undergrowth beginning to yellow a bit!
The market basket is stored in the basement when not in use, and I've kept the red twig dogwood branches from years past. They make great filler fodder, and are a beautiful red once the leaves fall off in late fall. I actually keep them loosely arranged with a rubberband to make for an easy start in future arrangements.

Instead of using a bucket with potting soil in the base of the market basket for this arrangement, I simply used a bucket with water this time. It's still easy to roll the basket without spillage. I just made sure my bucket was tall, and the water not filled too deep.
The picture above shows my work in progress. I simply started with the nandina branches in back, trimming as needed for the right height, and then started filling in the sides with magnolia and purple fountain grasses.
Lastly, I filled in with cut stems of butterfly bush and hydrangea blooms, adjusting and adding other branches where needed for fullness. That's it!
Once that was completed, I decided to rearrange the same elements into one of my garden watering cans. Since the can is not as large as the basket, the adjustments I made were taking out the red twig dogwood branches and trimming the remaining branches for less height.
I'll see how long these last, likely a week or so while in the water, but I have plans for a few of the cuttings. One thing I've learned in the past is that nandina berries are beautiful on the plant, but are like BBs, rolling all over the table, floor or wherever else you may place them as decor. They fall off rather quickly, so they should be placed into some sort of bowl or other container that will catch them if you decide to use them. Hydrangeas, once dried, can last a really long time - years - though the petals may start shedding. Magnolia branches are the best insofar as longevity. WYSIWYG (wizzy wig) is a an acronym/phrase that comes to mind with magnolia - what you see is what you get.
Floral arranging is not rocket science. You can use cuttings from your own yard, a neighbor's (do ask first!), or even a field or side of the road. Anything that looks interesting to you - texture, form, color - any and all of these make for potential little masterpieces. Have fun with it, and look for unusual containers to make it a unique display.

Your visits are always welcome, and your comments too. I try to answer each and all.

Rita C. at Panoply

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