Monday, January 13, 2020

On the mantel, on Monday

No, I'm not starting a new meme. I'm just having fun with the fact I post more about my mantel than in the traditional Monday meme, "In a Vase on..."

So, brass and glass. Two "finishes" I am not typically a fan of. I worked at Pier One Imports in the late 80's and early 90's...I saw enough brass there to last a lifetime. As for glass, well, glass has it's place (windows and wine glasses, for example), but if we're talking about a vase or a planter...glass is never my first choice. None-the-less brass and glass are the theme for my after-Christmas mantle...

What can I say? Sometimes you just have to change things up! Plus all those small slightly rooted, and need to root, begonias that came my way over the last few weeks needed a home. I thought I'd have fun with tiny terrariums.

Did you notice the small figure on the far left in the photo above? Here's a close up. I told Andrew I needed small frogs and instead I got a couple of cavemen.

I think he was worried about the moist environment though, because they disappeared just as quickly as they appeared.

These are Begonia bowerae (eyelash begonia). I had them rooting in water and they started to form small (oh so small) roots. Hopefully this moist environment with a little bit of soil and lots of sphagnum moss will keep them happy. Oh and just for the record, I have no idea what I'm doing. I'm just making it up as I go along.

I've kept this Asplenium nidus 'Crispy Wave' fern alive for over a year now, as a imitation Kokedama. Why imitation? Because I didn't use the specialized soil you're supposed to use when you're doing Kokedama. I just formed the root ball into an orb and covered it with moss. In front of the asplenium is a Brachychiton discolor seed pod that I planted up with a Lemmaphyllum microphyllum—a small epiphytic fern.

The eucalyptus bits came home with me from California.

The moss wreath was something I made a few years ago that's just been hanging out in the basement, waiting for a chance to be loved again.

A fragrant cutting from my loquat (Eriobotrya japonica) is in the gold circle vase. Next to that are several cuttings of Senecio macroglossus—I know, it looks like ivy—a gift from Dustin Gimbel when I visited his garden last month.

Those fern fronds! They're from an arrangement Andrew bought me for my birthday. My birthday is in July. Amazing right? I'm going to hang on to them as long as they look good, or until my next birthday, whichever comes first.

This little Pyrrosia lingua ‘Variegata’ seemed to be asking for the imitation Kokedama treatment, so it got it.

In case you were wondering, there's the other caveman, which actually may have been a cavewoman now that I think about it.

And without...

This little cutie is a jewel orchid, Macodes petola. Another common name is lightening leaves, you can see why.

The far end of the mantle includes a Polypodium pseudoaureum (the blue fern)...

As well as a small sansevieria that got the wanna-be Kokedama treatment.

Inside the taller glass terrerium (can I call them that, when they're so small?) is Begonia versicolor.

The short one contains another Begonia bowerae.

So, that's the current mantle mood!

Weather Diary, Jan 12: Hi 47, Low 39/ Precip .15

All material © 2009-2020 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

22 comments:

  1. I love your mantlescapes. If there aren't any in your first book, then you'll need to do a second book (pronto). Your scapes invite examination, just as any good garden landscape should. The cave people are a hoot but my favorite elements are the begonia terrariums.

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    1. I think one or two might have snuck in...

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  2. I love this! Mark usually wants our mantle with only a few things on it and lots of negative space. All the shapes and textures here are wonderful, even on such tiny plants. But the ferns (leaves and kokedama) are the ones that really made my heart race!

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    1. Andrew mentioned he liked that this one has a few "empty" spots. Evidently I tend to get a bit carried away for his taste.

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  3. Your mantle combinations are so creative. They go so well with the green of the fireplace surround. Does this area have really good light for all the plants to survive? Would love to try your style but don't think I have the light needed.

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    1. It has great light if we have light. The sun has been rather hidden since I changed things out from the Christmas decor. I've moved the plants over right next to the window a few times now, trying to give them a little more.

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  4. Maybe the cavemen are evolving and are going to reappear as green army men (although come to think of that I'm not sure that's evolving...)

    Love how creative these are. I didn't know kokedama required special soil. Hope your Begonias root and thrive.

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    1. It's not that it requires it, but something with a high clay content tends to hold the shape better and perhaps keep the roots from drying out as fast.

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  5. So much life in the middle of winter! All those little starts and specimens make me thing ahead to spring, which can't come soon enough. A "technical" question: how do you keep your mantel paint looking that good when you so often have somewhat porous containers on it? I seriously dislike the look of pot saucers but I'd be constantly re-painting if I didn't use them on all my indoor finished surfaces...

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    1. If I were to clear off the mantle and snap some photos you'd see it doesn't look that wonderful. I lifted that circle vase the other day to discover moisture under it. The paint I used does have a gloss finish, maybe that helps?

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  6. Your mantel posts are some of my favorite. The mini garden schemes are fun. My favorite is the tiny fern in the Brachychiton seed pod, and I'll try to emulate this tiny treasure.
    I wonder if the "disappearing" cave man will evolve into miniature frogs... they may still show unexpectedly.

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    1. Truth me told there are frogs now. A small red one and a green one.

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  7. A wonderful mix, like a mini-botanical garden to let your eye walk through. Beautiful!
    The cave people remind me of when my kids were little and my gardens held such surprises as 'army guys' and toy dinosaurs.

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    1. My 50-yr old husband still has the heart of a kid.

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    2. I see that as a very good thing. <3

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  8. Another top notch mantlescape, reminding me that I need to take action on mine. I got rid of all my brass stuff, hoping it would never come back into style.But in view of the fact that macrame is making a comeback anything can happen. And if anyone can make brass look good and design forward that would be you !

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    1. Get going lady! ;) And ya...macrame, who'da thought? (thank you)

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  9. I want to be like you when I grow up. That looks fabulous. Cheers

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    1. One of the benefits of not having kitties...

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  10. Best dressed mantle by far!
    rickii

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