One of the funny things about moving to the Southern Hemisphere after living thirty plus years in the Northern Hemisphere is Christmas. It rolls around every year just as before and yet it is a Totally Different Animal compared to my Christmases Past. Obviously the main difference is that it falls in the summer and you just don’t get that long build up that you do in the UK. I remember really enjoying shopping in the afternoons when the Christmas Lights would be in full force, carols blaring from all the shops and Enormous Department stores crammed with everything under the sun. Here I shop at local markets and smaller shops that are still decorated beautifully but in a less flashy way. We eat turkey and ham on Christmas Day and Christmas pud but we might start with whitebait fritters or Paua patties and I might make an ice cream cake for desert too. It’s still Christmas but Not As I Knew It! I’ve adapted and, as with food and shopping and other traditions, I’ve also adapted my decorating traditions including Decorations of the Green Variety. Even though I know I have an infinitely larger variety of flowers to choose from it still took a while for me to stop myself looking for berried ivy and holly and mistletoe and trying to force hyacinths for Christmas (I did it once as a Brownie and always associated it with Christmas!) However, four years on, I feel I have Moved On and so, here is my Southern Hemisphere Take on a Christmas Vase!
Stunning, vibrant colours aren’t they….a bit much maybe? I wanted to add some Lime green Zinneas but some pesky insects ate them all in the green house….
…so I substituted this rather wonderful berry plant that (dare I say it) is rather like a weed in my garden! I love it though and have used it on many occasions. I like to tuck a little sprig of it ino napkins when I decide to Make An Effort (can cause Mr Fig to Raise An Eyebrow when I do this!)
This dahlia is amazing not just because of it’s array of hues from yellow to orange to pink to red but also because it Survives Without Too Much Attention and I Like That. I’m quite busy really (who isn’t?) so I really appreciate flowers that pop up in Spring, die down again and then pop up in Spring again. I have lost count of the number of dahlias that seem to Disappear Without A Trace. Where do they go?
I adore this orange flower. Mr Fig chose it and seems to think its called Elephant’s Ears….I’m not so sure so if you recognise it please tell me what it is! I grow it alongside Chocolate Cosmos because it puts me in mind of my favourite chocolate of All Time Terry’s Chocolate Orange.
So this is my offering for this Monday’s Flowers in a Vase, as part of Cathy’s inspiring and wonderful meme at Rambling in the garden. Pop along and have a look and perhaps be inspired to join in. It really is beginning to feel like Christmas now so Merry Christmas to everyone who reads my blog and thank you for joining me on my journey (especially to those who comment – you really do make my day!!)