I missed last week's Ikebana vase challenge because we were just returning from our week's vacation, including a vacation from email and computers. But I own a stack of books on Ikebana as well as Ikebana baskets and a bronze Usubata-type flower container, so it seemed to me that I should make an effort to make an arrangement in that style.
Displaying my creation in our Tea House certainly makes it look like I know what I am doing. A few years ago I took an introductory workshop on Ikebana and decided that it had more rituals and rules than I could cope with. I realized that I love the containers but I was never going to be able to create anything that followed the precepts of one of the traditional Ikebana schools.
My arrangement is a by-guess-and-by-golly affair. Most of the illustrations in my books use beautiful sprays of foliage and flowers of plants that I do not grow or could not bear to cut — like a flowering branch of Stewartia japonica. I thought an uneven number of blooms was the best place to start. But that Hakonechloa grass seemed discordant; chartreuse rather than golden like the daylily throat. Perhaps Japanese Blood Grass would have been a wiser choice if only my plant was big enough to allow for cuttings.
Maybe the daylily should have been taller or a softer color. Or maybe it should disappear completely. Maybe Mies van der Rohe was thinking of Ikebana when he declared "less is more."
To see what other gardeners have put in a vase today, visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden who hosts this long-running meme.