In A Vase On Monday – Last of the Peonies

IMG_5661For this week’s vase, I feature the last of my peonies. This week’s warm temperatures will finish them for the year. They were spectacular and I am happy I got to enjoy them for three weeks.

Yellow thermopsis (Thermopsis villosa), an American native that I rarely see in gardens (though who knows why, as it is a wonderful perennial that I look forward to every year), and catmint (Nepeta racemosa) provide vertical accents.

IMG_5662I’ve tucked in a few small blossoms of white sweet William (Dianthus barbatus), a plant  that I discovered growing in the lawn when I moved here 25 years ago and still comes up every year. It is likely a heirloom variety.

Another favorite native, daisy fleabane (Erigeron annuus) and lady’s mantle (Alchemilla mollis) are used as filler.

A few leaves of a blue hosta are tucked in to compliment the blue tones of the catmint.



I’ve used an antique green hyacinth glass as my vase, one I’ve had for 40 years (oh, my! and it was old when I got it!). It rests on a hand-crocheted doily from my collection – a pineapple pattern that I think is so pretty. The little jade elephant is an old carving that belonged to my late mother-in-law.IMG_5663





Thanks to Cathy at Rambling In the Garden,  who hosts a weekly meme to showcase what is blooming in our gardens, creating arrangements to enjoy inside our homes. Wander over to see what gardeners all over the world are arranging this week. Feel free to join in, sharing your own weekly vase with a link to Cathy’s blog.


About Eliza Waters

Gardener, writer, photographer, naturalist
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70 Responses to In A Vase On Monday – Last of the Peonies

  1. Jewels says:

    Oh, this is so sweet and fresh looking, Eliza. ❤

  2. ladygrace33 says:

    Beautiful summer flowers 🙂

  3. Maria F. says:

    Very beautiful Eliza, nice work!

  4. homeslip says:

    I am learning so much from taking part in this meme. Your vase combines so many beautiful blooms in such a pleasing and well-balanced way, it is really lovely.

  5. These are some of my favorite postings, Eliza. I love when you title pops up.

  6. maureenc says:

    Once again Eliza, thank you for sharing your Peonies with your readers.
    That yellow flower you mention looks as though it may be related to Lupin family? (I think your countrymen refer to them as Grannies Bonnets?)
    Whatever, your last peonies of summer were most welcome on this gray morning in Queensland

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Hi Maureen, I’m glad the arrangement brightened your day. 🙂 Yes, thermopsis, a southeast US native, is of the legume family. Good spotting!

  7. Looks beautiful Eliza and so fresh! 🙂

  8. Walking My Path: Mindful Wanderings in Nature says:

    So beautiful, Eliza. You are an artist.

  9. Heather says:

    Oh I love that yellow thermopsis! For just a second I panicked thinking you had plucked some early goldenrod 😉 My cats don’t allow me to have flowers – or any plants – inside. Our new home has a little greenhouse-type area that I’m looking forward to growing some plants in though 🙂

  10. The flowers are so fresh and pretty! Great details!

  11. Joanne says:

    How gorgeous are your peonies, like romantic folds of gathered white chiffon! The display in the vase is so beautiful and I love the crocheted doily and jade elephant too. 🙂

  12. dorannrule says:

    With all your exquisite details and those beautiful flowers, each arrangement is truly a work of art Eliza.

  13. Cathy says:

    A very pretty collection of flowers Eliza, and so beautifully arranged! I also have some white Sweet Williams that pop up every year and I do love them.

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thanks, Cathy. Sweet William takes me back to childhood and my Grandpa’s garden, a lovely memory and most likely the root of my love of gardening. 🙂

  14. A lovely arrangement, Peonies are one of my favorites as well.

  15. Murtagh's Meadow says:

    Wow – what a beautiful vase of flowers. I love the colour combinations. Perfect:)

  16. Sue Vincent says:

    That has to be the happiest colour combination 🙂

  17. A beautiful colorful vase with a favorite yellow and purple combo. I do love the fleabane and the Thermopsis villosa which is native the the Appalachian Mtns in the US. It reminds me of Baptisia which I do grow and love especially in a vase. I am also using the beautiful Lady’s Mantle flower too…just perfect in a vase.

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thanks, Donna. I also love lady’s mantle as a filler, it is a lovely color that compliments everything and is light and airy.
      Your arrangements this week are so lovely! I love the way you show them in photo collages, a technique that seems beyond my expertise!

  18. ladyfi says:

    Wow – so beautiful!

  19. pbmgarden says:

    Eliza, this is a beautiful arrangement and beautifully photographed. Like Donna, the Thermopsis reminded me of baptisia. I’d love to have a Sweet William pop up every year. I’m having a difficult time getting it established in my garden.

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thank you! Yes, it is like a baptisia or lupine, both being legumes. Sweet William is often biennial, but I have two varieties, the white and a red-white bicolor, that come up every year. Maybe try a heritage type?

  20. seedbud says:

    Gorgeous arrangement. AH! Thermopsis. Thank you again! I’d been looking for the name of that! It almost never fails that when the peonies are just reaching peak bloom we have a hard rain – or several. But we have had an enormous amount of blooms this year. And I have been cutting heaps – greedy flower gatherer that I can be. So I’ve had a few days of a heady pink heaven indoors.

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thanks, Catherine! Isn’t that the best thing about peonies – that scent is heavenly, and bringing them into a small room is the best way to concentrate its perfume. ❤

  21. So pretty , and a graceful use of heirlooms with your gorgeous peonies . The color combination is perfect with the jade elephant and your vase. So cool and elegant , Eliza ☺

  22. Ellen says:

    Love the arrangement. I wasn’t familiar with thermopsis, but I’ve seen it around. Also like the doily and jade elephant. I bet if I wandered around your house I see lots of things I’d like — we have similar taste

  23. Kathy Sturr says:

    Beautiful arrangement Eliza! I love Lady’s Mantle. I also love that Yellow Thermopsis – indeed who knows why we don’t see more of that around! I have a lot of fleabane this year – I confess I have been weeding it out of my beds. Big bad Kathy.

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thanks, Kathy. Fleabane is prolific and I do weed it out of much of the garden, but I leave patches of it at the back of the beds where its height works. And, of course, it is in the fields as well. Great pollinator plant!

  24. Kris P says:

    It’s a pretty and well-balanced arrangement. I love the addition of the lupine-like Thermopsis – it adds zing!

  25. Rebecca says:

    Gorgeous, Eliza. I love not only the flowers (and your explanation of them) but also the vase and the elephant and the doily. Everything in your photo has a story. So thoughtful.

  26. mk says:

    What a beautiful arrangement, Eliza. You’re a true artist.

  27. Cathy says:

    Gosh – I would have mistaken your peonies for roses if you hadn’t said! I love your additions, especially the white Sweet William. The thermopsis (which I don’t know at all) links perfectly with the erigeron and alchemilla. Thanks form sharing 🙂

  28. Debra says:

    Gosh. You really have a great eye for these arragements. Your cases are always perfect. Love the deep green against teh gentle flower colours.

  29. Robbie says:

    Are those white peonies? Oh so lovely:-)love your vase photos:-) I consider that living art-you sure have an eye:-)

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thank you, Robbie. Yes, white peonies, probably ‘Festiva’ would be my guess.

      • Robbie says:

        were they fragrant?I only have the pink ones. My mother when she was visiting one year went out there and clipped them and brought them inside four a centerpiece. I had no idea they were fragrant! Oh my-they filled the house. I always forget to clip them + when I remember it is usually too late.

      • Eliza Waters says:

        Oh, gosh, the scent is divine! And they really are best appreciated in a small room that will gather and hold the fragrance in the air. Next to the bed or in the bathroom is perfect pleasure. 🙂 Next year I will write and remind you to pick some! 😉

  30. Wonderful photographs of beautiful flowers.

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