Funny, but my favorite flower arrangements are not the fresh firsts of spring or the bright crayon colors of summer. I love fall bouquets.
It started when I used to teach herb classes in fall. I would go around my garden and find as many herbs as possible to show my students the depth and breadth of herbs; parsley and sage for sure, echinacea that's easy, but how about juniper berries and rose hips, and why not willow.
I would assemble them in a large glass jar, and then tote them across town, the combined fragrance of 20-30 herbs filling the car. I loved that by this time of year they had fruited and flowered, but also mellowed and withered a bit. I liked the sense of time and place it conveyed.
Now I go beyond the bounds of simply herbs and try to capture the essence of the season in one enormous arrangement. It's a little tradition all my own. I try to avoid some of the autumnal cliches and don't discount possible candidates for being bug-eaten or tattered. And every year, the results are different.
So don't think your garden is "over", now that frosts and cold temps are in town. Here's what I found interesting this time:
Fall Bouquet www.thegardenbuzz.com
- Sedum Autumn Joy
- Sweet Autumn Clematis
- Orange Hyssop
- Campanula seedpods
- Japanese Forest Grass
- Karl Forster Feather Reed Grass
- Hardy geranium leaves
- Viburnum branches with red leaves and berries
- Oregano blooming
- Black-eyed Susan seedheads
- African Blue basil
- Blue green baptisia foliage
- Jewels of Opar "beads"
- Signet marigolds
- Fennel seeds
- Rudbeckia "Herbstonne" flowers and seed pods
Imagine the herbal scents of licorice (fennel), root beer (agastache-hyssop) anise (basil) and pizza (oregano) all competing at once; it's actually intriguing. Add the pungent marigold too. It's feast for the senses.
Sometimes more is more.
The Autumnal Equinox, a time when day and night are equal for a moment, signals a shift in nature's rhythms. Not a time associated with rebirth, yet I watched newly-hatched snapping turtles seeking their first encounter with water as they marched from my flower beds to the pond. What signs of fall have you seen?