Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Just sharing with you the table arrangements I made for our annual summer picnic/dinner at our Probus Club last August. All the flowers were from our garden. I carefully picked ones I hoped to use for our "western" theme picnic. I was hoping to have arrangements with a yellow rose dominance for this theme. (as in the Yellow Rose of Texas). As time was getting close to the event, I could see I was going to have trouble finding enough yellows in my garden for this. A few weeks earlier or even later, they would have been very abundant - but of course Murphy's Law!!! Anyhow, I carefully picked, and conditioned blooms for up to two weeks before and refridgerated them in a spare fridge. As I was not going to be able to make my arrangements from all yellow roses, then I sucumbed to anything white, roses or otherwise for fill-ins.
(please click on all pictures for better view)
I chose to make up the arrangements on the day before the event I placed all my material in the kitchen ready to start. I looked around the kitchen and I thought how lovely it looked and smelled - like a little florist shop. I felt very proud of the beautiful flowers I had grown. The "white" side was particularly pretty, I thought. The flowers included white geraniums, antirrhinums, phlox, roses, and hydrangea.
The yellow side which was all roses, included Golden Celebration, Amber Queen and St. Patrick and Tamora (not quite yellow, but they blended)
..........and as a single contrast in each arrangement, (an afterthought) there was to be one large Double Delight in the center. This worked really well as I knew that the table runner and the napkins were going to be of red and white gingham, so it worked fine!
For the containers, I used canning jars which with pieces of bandanna wrapped around them in red and yellow! These added to the fun of it. I inserted florist oasis into each container to make arranging easier and more stable.
As each arrangement was finished, I set them on the dining room table out of the way, while I was working on the next one - always keeping one with me as a pattern to follow.
It is difficult to tell from these pictures, but the arrangements were oval shaped.
I used hosta leaves as a base - unfortunately the photos do not do them justice, I do not believe. I also used pieris for greenery. It does not really show up on the pictures, but it worked well.
Thanks for looking at my summer bounty! Pauline


Joanne said...

Pauline what wonderful photos and beautiful arrangements. You must have worked very hard to produce so many flowers to be able to use and how clever to use the hosta leaves.
I can only imagine the heavenly scent.

Sandra said...

Stunning!!! What beautiful arrangements! I love your roses!! Ok, I gotta have some english roses in my garden now! lol Did you get yours from Jackson & Perkins?

gardenerprogress/Catherine said...

Those are beautiful! First of all I wish I could fine that many flowers in my garden at once. I bet they made the tables look gorgeous.

nikkipolani said...

I love that combination of yellow and white! It's clear from the little bit of your garden seen through the window that you had a lot of other colors to choose from. How did you condition the David Austins to hold up in the bouquets?

Roses at Wedgwood House and Gardens said...

Thanks all for your nice comments.

Sandra, unfortunately we in Canada cannot purchase from rose suppliers in the US. I mostly order from Pickering or Hortico and if I happen to see any I have wanted at the Big Box stores, then I will pick them up. Just picked up some very healthy "Windmill" 2 Chrysler Imperial, a Fragrant Cloud and a Blue Moon from Wal-Mart. For Hybrid Teas, I cannot get enough of Chrysler Imperial, the colour and the intense perfume blows me away.

Nikki,you are correct, of course, a lot of the Austins have a short vase life (especially if you have cats around ("wink,wink"!) Anyway, I just did my best with them, I pick them before they are fully open, at the narrow cup stage. I throw them (up to their necks) in warm water with sugar and a few drops of bleach. After a couple of hours or when I am ready, I de-thorn and de-leaf cut to size then put like ones in appropriate containers. (using the same water if still nice and clear) I then store them in a fridge until ready to use. The fridge certainly slows down the growing process until almost a halt. There will be some of course, that fall to bits when I go to use them, but I was pretty successful this way. After the event, it does not really matter how long they last. Actually I told people who had won the arrangements after the event, to just replace odd blooms with "anything" as they finish, that way the arrangement itself would last a long time.

Dirt Princess said...

Beautiful arrangements!

Carolyn said...

Wow! Those rose bouquets are so beautiful. What a lot of work you did. I also love the view of your garden from the kitchen window.
Thank you for sharing,

lady jicky said...

Isn't that they way - you want yellow and they are not out until the date is over!
I thought your arrangements were wonderful anyway!
Pauline - I do not have a blog but I love to read them!
Looking forward to your next post!

Anonymous said...

My dear Pauline,

Absolutely gorgeous!! I can almost the amazing fragrance! I am swooning just thinking about the beauty and fragrance. English roses are so lovely--my favorite. Your arrangements for the event were spectacular.

Thank you for sharing your tips for the arrangements.


Teresa O'Connor said...

Pauline: It was a pleasure to look at all those lovely arrangements. Thanks very much for sharing them.
Teresa O'Connor at Seasonal Wisdom

lynn'sgarden said...

Hi Pauline, what a great photo journal of that special day...Your arrangements were creative and fun! BUT that view out your window to the garden...TO DIE FOR!!!

Tatyana said...

Lovely, lovely, lovely! I need to go look at your other posts to see a garden where these gorgeous flowers came from. Thank you!

MNGarden said...

You are so talented. The arrangements are fabulous. Good job.

nikkipolani said...

Thanks for your conditioning tips, Pauline. I wondered what you did to "hold" them. I, too, have learned to pick the ones that are just barely opened unless I know the bouquet only needs to last a few hours from the time of picking. Graham Thomas has held up pretty well for me, but judging from a neighbor's Golden Celebration, I think GC is sturdier. I just planted GC this spring and CAN'T WAIT until it takes off. I also planted Jubilee Celebration (a bareroot this spring), but it is looking barely alive.

I didn't realize you couldn't order from the US, as we can order from Pickering and Hortico.

And you're absolutely right about Chrysler. What a fabulous rose! I also love Oklahoma, but I think Chrysler is much more prolific.

Happy weekend to you :-)

Roses at Wedgwood House and Gardens said...

Thanks again everyone for your nice comments. Lady Jicky. How nice of you to check these blogs when you do not have one yourself. I did try and trace one down from you, but of course, nothing, but I really appreciate your nice comments, thank you.

Yup Nikki, it's a bummer that we cannot order from the US!


flower lover said...

Pauline, I am so happy that you like my flower arrangements. Actually I am in Taiwan that is a different country from China. We have big populations and small island, so it's not easy to have own garden here, parpticually in the city.
I am taking floral design course once or twice per week. It is my happiest time as doing flower arrangement.
I love your garden very much. Hope I can have my own garden one day!
Lovely to know you and will keep hanging around in your beautiful garden.

mss @ Zanthan Gardens said...

I'm just gobsmacked. Where do you live that flowers grow like that? Wow! Even in my very best month of the year, April, my flowers couldn't produce that kind of overflowing abundance. It's amazing and gorgeous.

Roses at Wedgwood House and Gardens said...

Thank you flowerlover! Much appreciated! I apologize for my mistake! (ignorance) I live on an Island too. Island living is different for sure. I love it! But Vancouver Island is not a country like yours is. It is Canadian and we belong to the Province of British Columbia. Our daughter and family live on the mainland and we visit whenever we can! (which is Vancouver)
Thank you so very much for your nice comments on our garden!

MSS, heehee! You made me laugh and I really appreciate your comments. I live on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada Despite what you think, our growing conditions are not that great on our "particular" piece of property, but I try to grow against all odds. We have two acres, which are mostly wet becaue of many Springs, a pond and a salmon spawning creek. It is the springs that do us in!) and of course the fact that we are surrounded by a dense perimeter of tall evergreens which do not allow any winter sun. Also a lot of blue clay, so we are managing against all odds. Our roses are quite lovely, but not as they could be. They tend to get taller looking for light (too tall sometimes), I prune them way back, but they still get tall, which also means they need to be staked. Everything in our garden needs to be staked, BUT we are really proud of what develops! I do envy those people with extreme almost un-obscurred light and sun. That to me is the ultimate. (But then we adore our privacy too).. Anyhow, we are doing our best, and we are happy with the results, considering!

flowerlover said...

Thank you, Pauline. I haven't been Canada, but I knew it is a very beautiful country. I have search the "Vancouver Island " and found it is very close to Vancouver, just accross by Strait of Georgia.
It is very nice to know where you live, hope will visit your country in the future.

a woman who is said...

Hello, I am just stopping by on my way to looking up some rose info. I have looked at all your roses from a-z. Wonderful pictures and great descriptions. I am in the process of a new garden. Roses being the backbone.

I loved seeing this post. You did an amazing job. I ended up doing two weddings last year. Quite a lot of work and stress, and I didn't even grow the flowers!