In a Vase on Monday – my fund-raiser flowers.

Table flowers are a joy. They set the scene for leisurely lunches, or cosy friends-and-family dinners. Even a picnic has to have flowers. Usually I linger over the selection and mooch around the garden searching for material. This weekend, I ran round the plot at a gallop. The flowers thrown into jam jars in haste. I was planning an afternoon tea for 45 people! I just had time to gather these gloriously sunny chrysanthemums. I picked variegated ivy flowers and some beech and oak leaves. Here are the chrysanthemums, not looking very glamorous, in the corner of my poly tunnel.

Variegated ivy Glorie de Marengo covers one end of my 40 foot pergola. It provides cutting material all year round. I particularly love the starry flowers at this time of the year. The huge beech tree in the middle of the lawn casts a golden glow and its autumn leaves look so cheerful in amongst my Aunty Doris chrysanthemums.

I threw the lot into a wicker basket on the potting shed window while I searched for suitable jam jars. You can see my garden, the beech, cherry and maple trees around the pond, reflected in the potting shed windows.

Then I left the peace and quiet of the potting shed to head over to Spring Barrow Lodge near Coalville. It’s the home of my garden design clients Pat and John Stanley, where we were hosting my afternoon tea and gardeners’ talk for Rainbows Hospice. Author Barbara Segall kindly agreed to come and present a talk and slide show on her newly-launched book Secret Gardens of East Anglia.

And I thought you’d like see the flowers on the tables- arranged so hurriedly. They contain the Aunty Doris chrysanthemums I wrote about last year Here

Barbara’s talk transported us all to the fabulous gardens contained in her wonderful book. I wrote a review here. I am so grateful to Barbara for her kindness in agreeing to come and help me stage this event- my first ever fund-raiser for charity. I am still counting the proceeds. But I think the admission tickets, book sales, raffle tickets and generous donations from people who could not attend but wanted to support us, amounts to just short of £1,000. To say I’m over the moon, is an under statement! I’ll write more tomorrow when I have gathered my thoughts. At the moment, I am still on cloud nine to be honest. There’s so many people to thank……

But I wanted to join in and congratulate Cathy at rambling in the garden for her 4th anniversary of In a Vase on Monday. Every week, I look in to see what everyone is growing, picking and arranging in their gardens- all around the world. It’s a fascinating blog, and I love joining in when I can. Go over and have a look. For the anniversary celebration the theme was any container- but a vase. So I was delighted to be able to join in with my great Aunty Betty’s Kilner jars, wicker baskets and simple glass jam jars. Thank you Cathy for hosting such a lovely meme, and for the friendship the blog has created amongst our growing and gardening community. I certainly appreciate all you do.

For more on Rainbows Hospice, click on the link here. All other highlighted words contain further information and are not affiliate links.

38 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday – my fund-raiser flowers.

  1. Oh many, many congratulations on your fund raising Karen. What a fantastic amount now going to an excellent cause. Those crysanths are a vase of sunshine in themselves – flowers that have originated from family and friends are so special.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Anna. And when I handed the funds over, there was some more good news. One person who came to my event has sighed up to be a volunteer at the hospice , and two people have joined the monthly lottery -which is so useful as it guarantees some income for Rainbows. Thanks for reading and for your kind comments. All the best – Karen


    • Thank you. The chrysanthemums must be the kind of variety that flowers until Christmas. My father in law was given a cutting by Aunty Doris in the 1950s. She was a very good gardener. He’s kept it going all these years, but sadly has mobility problems now and cannot garden. So the precious family heirloom cuttings have passed to me! My FIL used to grow them for my MIL Joan. Now I’m growing them and taking bouquets of them back to her each week. The flowers last 2 weeks in a vase. We usually decorate our xmas tables with them. They are so cheerful aren’t they. Thanks again for your kind words, and for reading. All the best. Karen


    • Thank you Mike. Everyone had a wonderful time. I’ve never made so many sandwiches in my life. Mum made scrumptious cakes- even though she’d only just had an operation. All’s well and we raised a fantastic amount. Still can’t quite believe it. Phew. Quite worn out. Thanks for reading. Hope you are having a good week. Love karen xx

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    • Thank you. I really enjoyed organising the event and everyone had such a lovely time. I’m still amazed we raised so much from an afternoon tea and talk. I’m looking forward to handing over the money to Rainbows hospice for children. Thanks again for reading and getting in touch.


  2. I am so thrilled it went well for you, Karen – but I knew it would and I am only sorry I wasn’t able to come. People readily and generously come together for a good cause, and a children’s hospice is one of the best. I wonder what your next fund raiser will be…? Your hurriedly collected flowers look so pretty on the tables and Aunty Doris is such a cheery soul. But I must have missed a post as I didn’t know yoour MUm and daughter had both been in hospital although you had referred in a comment to dashing around for family emergencies. How are they both? I do so hope they are doing well since their operations (?) and that you did not get too stressed or worried juggling time spent with them and arranging for your fundraiser (plus work of course). Please give your Mum my regards and best wishes

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Cathy. Sending an e mail to you. Phew it has been a stressful time. Luckily I’d done a lot of advance prep for the day. So I didn’t leave everything till the last minute. However, I’m completely shattered now. I’m just mulling over what to do next as a fund raiser. Will let you know. Will pass on your message to Mum. x


  3. Karen congratulations for everything you’ve achieved for the Rainbows Hospice! You have a heart of gold! You have brought a successful writer to give a talk with 45 people for tea! You have gotten free books for the raffle! You have sold books! You are a treasure. The bouquet is wonderful: the yellow Chrysanthemums are beautiful, the flowers of the Ivy are pretty and the leaves of Beech and Oak have beautiful colors. I’m very happy that everything was a success. By the way, how are your Mother and your oldest daughter who were going to operate urgently the same day in different hospitals? I hope they are both in good health. Give me memories of my part of love and encouragement, especially your Mother. The three generations are victors and can with everything! Karen I am by your side at all times: many strengths and encouragement. 🙂 Greetings with love from Margarita.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you Margarita! It was a bit of a challenge on top of everything else going on. But I did a lot of advance planning which stood me in good stead on the day. Phew. Thank goodness Mum and daughter are doing great now. I’m just back from visiting Mum and she looks great. I’m so relieved, as you can imagine. Thank you for your lovely kind comments and for always thinking of me and wishing me well. It means a lot to have your support. Greetings and love from karen and Mum x


  4. Those beech and oak leaves are RAD! I do not recognize those oaks. I do not remember what the English oak looks like, so I would guess that is what it is. The ivy is also creative. The adult growth of variegated Algerian ivy was grown in the 50s as a shrub known as ‘ghost ivy’, but it is uncommon now. Ivy has such a bad reputation.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Tony, there’s a photo of an oak tree just along from my garden in a previous post. Ivy does have a bad reputation but is so valuable for wildlife. Bees love the flowers and birds eat the seeds. I hadn’t heard if ghost ivy. I’m just having a look. Thanks again for reading and for getting in touch. Best wishes – karen

      Liked by 1 person

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