Thursday, 8 January 2015

Hello all and a very happy new year to each and every one of you!

As I mentioned in my last post, not much ikebana was done during my recuperation period. This was due to my limited mobility and the restrictions imposed on me by my loving but somewhat overzealous carers, namely my husband, Sam and my sister, Lucy, both of whom hovered over me like a couple of mother hens. All kidding aside, I am very grateful to them as well as the rest of the family for taking such excellent care of me.

My garden, oblivious to my plight, continued to produce beautiful, seasonal material that was crying out to me to cut it and arrange it. It took a great deal of self control to resist the temptation.

Anyway, I'm a little more mobile now, although I have to allow for frequent rest periods, as my feet are still swollen and will be for another two months. So, I've been able to make some arrangements to satisfy my cravings and to share with you.

These dancing ladies orchids were given to me by my friend Olga, the asiatics by my sister in law, Toula and the weeping mulberry branches were in my ikebana room, so the whole thing came together without too much exertion.

The next two arrangements are in my newly acquired containers that just had to be used immediately. At the time I could only manage these simple arrangements but with a Christmas feel.

Here I used red hot pokers and alstroemarias with gold and silver mizuhiki.

I bent these agapanthus stems by pushing them down whilst still buds and they developed this shape. I used with them some pine and pine cones, which I sprayed gold plus some red and silver beads.

My gloriosa lilies are quite prolific at the moment and I'm able to keep this arrangement going by replacing each flower as it dies.

Hydrangea and dried date palm piece

The sunflowers in this arrangement were planted by my two grandchildren (with assistance) and were watered by them at each visit. I didn't have the heart to cut them when in full flower but the kids have since lost interest so I can use them with a clear conscience. I also used a gyamea leaf, red hot pokers and watsonias.

I hope you'll forgive the doting grandmother for including this photograph of Xavier and Hermione in the garden with the sunflowers in the background.

A close up of the unfurling leaf and flowers

This arrangement is 2.5m tall and, thus, a little difficult to photograph. I used a strelitzia nicolai leaf that is just unfurling and some flowers from my neighbour's creeper, with his permission, of course. Neither he nor I know the name of the creeper.

From my balcony I could see a tantalizing vivid pink colour at the bottom of my garden. When I finally made it down there to investigate, I remembered the bromeliads I had planted there. I had fun using the leaves and with them I used calla lily seed heads.

Yellow calla lilies with a spent strelitzia flower

In the two arrangements below I used the dead flowers from strelitzia nicolai that were to be thrown out after having been used previously but they have such a sculptural look that I enjoyed playing with them.


I'm a long way from getting back to normal activity but it's a great feeling to be doing even the few things that I can.

Bye for now,

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