IAVOM-Going Native

flower arrangementGoldenrod (Solidago sp.) has begun to bloom, a sign I interpret as the point where we begin to slide from mid-summer towards autumn. The seasonal cycles continue unabated, ‘time and tide wait for no man’ or woman, for that matter. Bittersweet as it is, I must accept it. Thankfully, there are yet many weeks of glorious summer weather ahead of us to enjoy.

As the title suggests, I’ve made my arrangement this week mostly of native plants. Soft-pink Joe Pye Weed (Eutrochium maculatum) has been blooming for a week or two, another great late-season pollinator plant, along with Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) and Woodland Sunflower (Helianthus divaricatus), all greedily visited by bees and butterflies. American Goldfinches have already started plucking seeds from the latter two, their cheerful twittering filling the air.

The only non-native are Hosta blossoms added to provide a bit of contrasting purple color.

Sweet peas

Sweet peas

For the past month, I have enjoyed huge bouquets of Sweet Peas (Lathyrus odoratus) brought into the house, the heady perfume nearly making me swoon. I’ve been religious about cutting all the blooms from the vines in order to promote further flower production and it has been most effective. The heat and lack of good rain seems to be having its effect in slowing them down, so I expect there won’t be many more vases. It has been a good run, so I share today’s pickings with you here. I only wish I could add a ‘Scratch and Sniff’ to the post!

I’m joining other gardeners from around the world, sharing arrangements from their gardens, at Rambling in the Garden‘s In A Vase on Monday.

About Eliza Waters

Gardener, writer, photographer, naturalist
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104 Responses to IAVOM-Going Native

  1. Love the sweet peas. I had no idea Joe Pye weed was so pretty.

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thank you, Ellen. JPW has gained a foot hold and seems intent on taking over a section of my garden/field edge, but what a great ‘thug’ to have as it is a magnet for pollinators.

  2. cindy knoke says:

    The sweet peas!!! You still have them!
    Mine hung on valiantly longer than they should, here in The Holler heat. I couldn’t believe they were such troopers, filling bouquet after bouquet, long after the heat should have made them expire.
    Your flowers are beautiful Eliza.

  3. Tranature - quiet moments in nature says:

    Beautiful vases Eliza, both of them, and a ‘scratch and sniff’ for the sweet peas would be amazing! 🙂💖🌺 xxx

  4. Anne says:

    What a joyful vase of native flowers! I can imagine the lovely scent of sweet peas too – your home must smell lovely with them indoors.

  5. dylan hereford says:

    nice post. i have to admit the bouquets do look nice even though i don’t like them in the house. they are beautiful.

  6. dylan hereford says:

    we are headed to maine tommorow love ya and see ya in a week.

  7. dylan hereford says:

    such dope pictures too. i need to get a good camera

  8. dylan hereford says:

    ill see all your posts if you email them too me in my primary mail. i just never look in my social mail catagory and thats what your blog is in.

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thanks for visiting and commenting, nice to see you here. I think that is a setting within your email server. Highlight the notification and move it to your other inbox… hope that helps!

  9. susurrus says:

    It’s funny what sign makes you realise the season is changing. For me, it’s usually a tree that is changing colour. I always seem to see the first ones surprisingly early and get that rueful ‘enjoy summer while you can’ feeling.

  10. Murtagh's Meadow says:

    Stunning and look at all those sweet peas! I am afraid mine had a bad start and haven’t really recovered!

  11. jenanita01 says:

    I love sweet peas…

  12. You made Mother Nature proud with this gorgeous display. Native is a good thing. 🙂

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thank you, Judy. 🙂 We were trimming part of a meadow and I had to use some of the goldenrod so as not to waste it and the arrangement took off from there. 😉

  13. Irene says:

    Gorgeous bouquets, Eliza.

  14. Treah Pichette says:

    Those sweet peas are amazing!

    • Eliza Waters says:

      They really are – I am hooked on them! As much as I love peonies, lilacs and lily of the valley as my scented favorites, sweet peas are giving them a strong contest by flowering 2-4x longer.


  16. AmyRose🌹 says:

    Again your sweet peas just grabbed a hold of my heart this morning, Eliza. Oh yes, Fall is most definitely in the air. There is now a yellow cast on much of the once lush green. *sigh* You’re right. Time waits for no one. Gorgeous photography!!! 💝

  17. If only there were a scratch and sniff. No matter! I could practically smell them anyway. Wonderful bouquet with natives. Always sad when sweet summer winds down. But what an August it has been! Almost makes up for July.

  18. So beautiful, Eliza! Inspiring as I am beginning to look at Fall planting for Spring beauty!

  19. Alice says:

    Lovely Native flowers. Interesting, there’s lots of Goldenrod here, in my southeastern-ish MA yard, none blooming. Great food for Monarchs!

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thank you, Alice. You’re right there. Goldenrod and asters are rich food sources for pollinators, esp. important at the end of the season in prep for winter. Not sure if their flowers are light or temp triggered, but I suspect the latter, as they are now blooming in the cooler north.

  20. Val says:

    I adore sweet peas, as well as their colours and scent they always bring back memories of when I grew them as a small child in my own little patch of the garden! 🙂

  21. Kris P says:

    When I saw your first photo, I thought you’d created a wreath. I didn’t realize it was a shot of the vase from above until I scrolled down. Regardless of its form, the native plants make a lovely arrangement. And you have sweet peas! Summer hangs on well into October here – maybe you need to pay SoCal another visit!

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Yes, I thought it looked like one, too. I should try to make one to dry and see how it turns out. It’s been a while since I made a dried wreath, which will last all winter.
      I would love to visit SoCal annually, timed to avoid winter here. I don’t want to think about that season right now with the current gorgeous weather making me quite happy here! 😉

    • Alice says:

      I thought it was a wreath, too! 😁

  22. Cathy says:

    Two glorious vases Eliza. Thanks for sharing all that beauty (and scent -;) ). Golden rod is just opening here too and is a lovely sight at the roadsides everywhere. 🙂

  23. Nature’s bounty. I love it all and the overhead shot is great! Sweet Peas all summer is nothing short of amazing to me. My native Chapman’s Goldenrod has sent up a big set of buds- I can tell the seasons are changing as well.

  24. Jewels says:

    Stunning arrangement, Eliza! And I do so love those sweet peas! 😍

  25. Brian Skeys says:

    My favourite golden Rod is Solidago Firecracker, different flower shape and well behaved. ie not invasive!

    • Eliza Waters says:

      It is a good clumping cultivar with great form. We have many different species here, tough to identify, hairy, smooth, etc. Some much more invasive than others, S. altissima is a huge thug. 😉

  26. Such beautiful arrangements Eliza! I feel the same way about this time of year, but still look forward to the warm days ahead.

  27. pbmgarden says:

    Your natives look amazing Eliza. The Goldenrod is such a good addition to arrangements. And the sweet peas are so pretty. I’ve never grown them successfully so glad you’re getting the most out of yours. I enjoyed your 6th blogging anniversary post and it spurred me back into action.

  28. Bela Johnson says:

    Beautiful. And yes, goldenrod always signaled impending fall to me as well. 🌺💜🤗

  29. ladyfi says:

    Ah – so lovely!

  30. Lovely native arrangement Eliza, it’s frothy and rustic and cheering – and the sweetpeas are frivolous and lovely 🙂

  31. naturebackin says:

    I always enjoy seeing native plants from other areas – they are so refreshingly unique. These look good in the vase too, and that jug is most striking.

  32. Love this weeks arrangements and so wish you could add a “scratch and sniff” element so I could enjoy everything about your amazing garden and flowers!

  33. Beautiful. I can feel the seasons changing too!

  34. jillslawit says:

    I can almost smell those beautiful sweet peas.

  35. Beautiful flowers Eliza and I love the sweat peas. Ive so enjoyed mine this year and like you have been constantly picking bunch after bunch and bringing them in the house. The smell is amazing.

  36. Robin says:

    I love both arrangements, but because I am such an autumn and winter kind of gal, I am particularly drawn towards the one that is announcing autumn with the goldenrod.

  37. Vicki says:

    I wish I could sniff them all too 🙂

    Such a beautiful array of blooms and so beautifully arranged too.

  38. Beautiful pictures, Eliza! And I especially love the sweet peas – one of my favorite flowers. (My mom used to grow them.) Thanks for reminding me – I need to plant some next year! 🌺😊

  39. tonytomeo says:

    Wow! Those sweet peas are rad, especially since it is August!
    Neither Joe Pye weed nor goldenrod are native here. I would like to grow both because it seems that everyone else is familiar with them. However, I do not want to introduce goldenrod here if it is not naturalized already. I saw it in a nursery a while back, but did not look to see i it happened to be a sterile or non-invasive cultivar.

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thank you, Tony. The SPs are winding down, but still, I picked a large vaseful this morning. So wonderful to enjoy in the house.
      You’re smart to be cautious of both JPW and Solidago, as they can take over. There are clumping (as opposed to stoloniferous) Solidago, which would be less threatening. Solidago rugosa ‘Fireworks’ is one.

      • tonytomeo says:

        I have seen it in nurseries, but would be very hesitant to try any because there are so many aggressively naturalized exotic species here. I have seen a small bit of goldenrod growing wild, and can not help but wonder what sort it is, or where it came from. So far, the few I have seen do not seem to be aggressive. I have seen no others in those areas.

      • tonytomeo says:

        This one is excellent, but rarely seen. It blooms fast, and in this region, it lives in small colonies. It is much more colorful in Southern California, even if only for a short while. It is supposedly one of the flowers that contributes to the bloom around the southern edge of Antelope Valley, between Los Angeles and Lancaster. (I think it lives in the hills, but also spreads out into the flat spaces in between, although I have not noticed it out in the larger Antelope Valley.) I would not mind if it naturalized here. I do not even think of it as a goldenrod, but now that you mention it, I am wondering if those that I have seen ‘naturalized’ are actually of this species, and only look exotic because they can get bigger on the coast.

  40. bittster says:

    I would have never thought you’d be so successful with sweet peas, I always thought they just fade away in summer and never really take off, but yours are amazing!
    The days are getting shorter here as well. I hate letting go.

    • Eliza Waters says:

      I’ve been so pleased with my SPs this year. Not sure what factor(s) resulted in my success, but I’d like to be able to replicate it next year. It may have been the cool, wet spring or the fact that I religiously cut every blossom. Who knows?
      “I hate letting go.” This is my problem exactly. 😉
      Thanks for your visit, Frank!

  41. Maria says:

    The colors are amazing Eliza!

  42. Gorgeous arrangements! I like the overhead view of the first!

  43. SunnyD says:

    Love these bouquets!!!! ❤❤❤

    • Eliza Waters says:

      Thank you, Dev, nice to see your comment here. x
      Hope your summer has been a good one. I’m running over to your site in case you posted, I want to see little B! 😉

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