Peonies are sort of always my flower of the day. They are just amazing. I wonder if there are those out there who don’t like peonies?
I was perusing this month’s House Beautiful, which features their favorites of everything. To give those favorites a personal touch, HB included profiles of fifteen or so notable designers, many of whom name peonies as their favorite flower. While many like pink Sarah Bernhardt, I like the ones that open so that you can see all the yellow stamens, which always make a nice contrast to the color of the petals.
While trying to find out more about one of my favorite peonies, Coral Charm, I came across a chart that explains the different types of peonies, ranging from “single” blooms to “Japanese” and “bomb,” all of which describe the flower’s style of opening. The chart can be found at the bottom of this page here. These beautiful Coral Charm peonies are “semi-double.” Semi-double style peonies “contain filaments which have widened irregularly, making petaloids of varying widths throughout which stamens are mixed. The guard petals may or may not be clearly differentiated.” Exciting stuff right?
For more luscious pictures of Coral Charm Continue reading
I’ll never get tired of a single bloom in an old Hendrick’s bottle
Nothing could be more fitting for an Ikebana basket than bearded iris
I have been meaning to capture the bearded irises of Rockridge, but by the time I got around to it most were brown and shriveled. Perhaps there will be one more bloom cycle before the season is over. In the mean time, in my search for irises I came across a ton of poppies. Here they are:
Romneya coulteri (matilla poppy)
That last picture is my favorite. [Rimpletide mentions that I might want to mention Amitav Ghosh’s new book Sea of Poppies (re: opium wars) here. This post should be titled See of Poppies (re: Rockridge life).]
I love the simplicity of scabiosa; a flower with a complete lack of pretension.
Scabiosa comes in an array of colors including a variety of blues and violets. One of my personal favorites is the “black” scabiosa.
Scabiosa is also famous for its pods. They look a little funny on their own, but are a floral designers secret trick. The chameleonlike little balls can be tucked into arrangements of various colors, shapes and sizes to add texture and interest.
Finally, a beautiful photograph of a classic periwinkle scabiosa (the tight little buds are a whole other beautiful entity no?):
Ms. Saipua made a gorgeous arrangement today, including fritillaria like I’d never seen before. Back in my florist days, we simply called it “speckled hen;” I’d never even heard fritillaria until, sigh, pua enlightened me. Hence, the F.O.D.:
by its Latin name: fritillaria meleagris (via Easy to Grow Bulbs.com)
Fritillaria caucasica, davisii and pinardii via the Scottish Rock Garden Club Bulb Log Diary
From Easy To Grow Bulbs:
This is a fun flower to include in an existing garden where it will pop up in mid to late spring with the late daffodils and just before the lily of the valley blooms. This fritillaria has slender, silvery-green foliage that doesn’t require much room and the nodding, bell-shaped, checkered flowers weave well in and amongst fuller spring perennials. These are also called Guinea Hen flowers because the flower markings are much like the feather patterns on some breeds of guinea fowl. Deer and rodent resistant. These bulbs are nursery propagated, not collected from the wild.
This is a special month, because it is the one month this year that my Magnolia Soulangiana, or tulip magnolia tree, is in bloom, along with many others like it around Rockridge. While some sources claim it’s a mid-spring bloomer, I’ve always experienced it in Rockridge in mid-January and February.
I’ve been meaning to post some pictures, so here they are:
A clipping with a few flowers looks phenomenal in a vase. So easy–no arranging required.
Here’s a view with the morning sun streaming through the branches:
Nirvana: In Bloom