This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V18", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
A few days since I arranged a vase of flowers for the breakfast table which was much admired by several friends, indeed, so much so, that I am induced to give a description of it, as the effect was produced by the arranging of the flowers not the quality, for they were only common garden varieties. The shape of the vase was a flat tazza, out of the centre of which rose a tall glass trumpet, and from the base of the trumpet sprang three curved branches; round the edge of the trumpet were fronds of the Lady Fern, and in the tazza were grouped white Water Lilies, Scarlet Geranium, leaves of Dells Beet, Ribbon Grass, hardy Ferns, and Wild Grass. In the three carved branches were yellow Roses and Delphiniums, the latter a very pale shade of blue. In the trumpet was a yellow Rose, some scarlet Geraniums, white Honeysuckle and blue Lobelia intermixed; with these were wild grasses and a few blades of Ribbon Grass; round the mouth of the trumpet drooped a few fronds of the Lady Fern, while twined amongst the glass branches were a few young shoots of the variagated Periwinkle. As will be observed on reading the above, the flowers themselves are only common kinds, such as are to be found in almost any garden, but if a little trouble be taken in the arranging of them, few I think will feel disappointed with the effect produced.
Other effective arrangements could be made in different colors with the same class of flowers, say for instance the light blue Delphi-iniums used in place of the Scarlet Geraniums; pink Christine Geraniums in place of the Delphiniums in the curved branches, and the same in the trumpet; again, mauve-colored Clematises might be used in the tazza, and Violas in the curved branches and trumpet; by the change of these few flowers quite different stands could be produced, though the principal flowers and foliage would remain the same all through. It is in this way that variety can be produced where there are few flowers to cut from. A great mistake often made is, that because the flowers at hand may not be perhaps of very choice kinds they are not worth arranging, but most effective decorations can be made with very simple materials; indeed, nothing is more charming than wild flowers if well arranged. Just at present, too, these are in their full beauty, so those living in the country who have not hitherto employed them will do well to give them a trial.- A. Has-sard, in Gardener's Record.