Sunday, 5 November 2017

A spring arrangement to lift the spirits.
Using five materials - clematis, wisteria, viburnum
opulus, cottage gladioli and alstroemeria leaves
Hello all,

The ikebana highlight of the past fortnight has been the annual Sogetsu exhibition at the Malvern Arts Society, which is still on and will end on Tuesday.

For my exhibit, below, I used a large, doughnut-shaped metal piece, the front of which I painted in this greeny-yellow colour. The branch material is a weeping mulberry and it measures 1.7 metres in length. I used a vivid blue paint colour to contrast with the green. The strength and colour of the green goddess lilies finishes this large, wall arrangement.There will be photos of the whole exhibition in our Sogetsu website in due course.

With the off cuts from the mulberry, I put together this arrangement using a flower from a strelitzia plant that came from my dear aunt's garden. You will notice that the flower has grown with an unusual bend to it.

An example of two themes - 'Colour of the Container' and 'Shape
of the Container'
At the moment my garden so prolific in materials for ikebana that I don't have the time to arrange them all, nor the places to put them. Basically, I'm suffering the embarrassment of riches, a condition for which I expect no sympathy.

My flag irises have all bloomed at once. Here are a couple of the arrangements I made with them.

A pond arrangement in a container I made using
 crushed coloured glass, which, after 
firing, becomes a glaze.

A close up of the flower, whose colour is such a
deep purple that it is almost black

White flag iris with weeping willow and
Japanese maple

My spuria irises are also flowering now. These grow very tall and are a challenge to arrange, so I bent them to point downwards in this modern wall arrangement. I used stainless steel strips to create an interesting balance.

The flower stems in this next arrangement were almost two metres tall and belong to a plant I thought is curculigo. It was given to me by my generous coleague, Pat Hetrel, who is a very knowledgeable gardener. I wanted it for its leaves, which are pleated vertically. I did not expect flowers and was absolutely delighted when I saw the spikes coming through. I waited to see what they would look like when fully opened and then I cut and arranged them. I had to remove some of the length to make them fit under the staircase. The sad thing is that after two days the lovely yellow flowers turned brown and the tips of the spikes drooped. Clearly, not great as a cut flower.

Here is the plant growing in a corner of the garden
next to the rain water tank

I leave you with this little arrangement using what I believe are arisaema flowers. I consulted google to find the correct name for them but had no success. If any one knows it, I would be very grateful if you would email me.  I have them growing in deep shade in a pot. Their flower is very interesting with this long thin 'toungue' as are the leaves.

Bye for now,

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