A Small Garden Flower Bouquet

Uh-oh, is there a rabbit after this beautiful little bouquet of red hybrid tea roses? (Photo by Charlotte Ekker Wiggins)

Uh-oh, is there a rabbit after this beautiful little bouquet of red hybrid tea roses? (Photo by Charlotte Ekker Wiggins)

A Garden Flower Bouquet

Of all of the things we can do to decorate our homes, adding a small bouquet of fresh flowers out of our gardens is the simplest, and most enjoyable, thing we can do. Not only does it bring some beauty into the room but you can add whimsy by pairing the flowers with a favorite decorating item.

In my case, the white porcelain rabbit has been a favorite coffee table partner for many years. I confess I make bouquets in relationship to the porcelain piece, such as this little bouquet of red hybrid tea roses I snipped from one of my rose beds.

I have real rabbits in my garden as well so having the little porcelain one inside reminds me of the ones living happily outside. Many are native wild rabbits, released into my garden when I was a rehabilitator for our local conservation office.

To easily add a small garden bouquet to your room decor, cut the flowers early morning and keep them in a vase of water not treated with salt for water softeners. That salt quickly cuts down the time the cut flowers will remain fresh in the vase.

Once you have the vase you want to use, re-cut the stems to the appropriate length. Add a pinch of aspirin to help keep the flowers fresh, then position them where you can enjoy them. Don't place them on top of electrical appliances such as TVs or anything else that produces heat. The heat will cut down the lifespan of the flowers.

Hardly. There is a rabbit but its porcelain and still has the good taste to admire the flowers. (Photo by Charlotte Ekker Wiggins)

Hardly. There is a rabbit but its porcelain and still has the good taste to admire the flowers. (Photo by Charlotte Ekker Wiggins)

These small red hybrid tea roses are sitting on my den coffee table so I can enjoy them when I am working.

I could have cut them with longer stems but I chose to keep them small. The smaller bouquets are easier to incorporate into a room close to where everyone can enjoy them.


Surprise Lilies

Surprise lilies in a flower vase in Bluebird Gardens kitchen.

Surprise lilies in a flower vase in Bluebird Gardens kitchen.

Surprise Lilies

One of the nicest garden gifts you can give is a bouquet of surprise lilies, even if it's just to yourself to brighten up a corner of your house.

Surprise lilies are hardy perennial bulbs that bloom usually in August in USDA zone 5b on leafless long green stems. Their aromatic pink flowers fade to a soft lavender as they age, the buds good to cut as they have first started to bloom.

Over the years, I have given away dozens of bouquets of surprise lilies, placing the pink flowers in tall vases and taking advantage of the dramatic look of the flowers on their long green stems. Some of the surprise lily bouquets have been used on altars in weddings.

Surprise lilies popping up in Bluebird Gardens.

Surprise lilies popping up in Bluebird Gardens.

Let's face it, though, not everyone has the room for a bouquet of tall surprise lilies so don't let those long legs discourage you.

Try surprise lilies cut short in a smaller vase, as I have in my kitchen. You can still enjoy the aroma and beauty of the flowers without having to struggle to peer around the vase!


Gooseneck Loosestrife Bouquet

Gooseneck loosestrife with miniature roses bouquet.

Gooseneck Loosestrife Bouquet

One of my favorite flowers has a funny name and can be invasive but I would still say find a spot in your garden for gooseneck loosestrife.

This perennial produces lovely tiny white flowers in clusters that resemble a goose neck. The flowers last a long time as cut flowers, and are a favorite of butterflies and a variety of bees.

Relatively easy to grow where I live, USDA zone 5b, gooseneck loosestrife will grow in shade. It can also grow in sunshine but if it has a preference of where to invade, it will choose a shady spot.

I would give this plant its own corner of the flower garden, allowing it to grow until you have a nice little bed you can cut from and enjoy in vases inside. The flowers are pretty all by themselves or mixed in with other flowers blooming at the same time.

If gooseneck loosestrife starts to move into areas you don't want it, just pull out of the ground. The plant grows with shallow roots and can be easily removed by hand.


Twig Reindeer Contact Information

Glad you enjoyed my earlier story on seeing twig reindeer traveling through town. There are few things that will put one in a holiday spirit than seeing Santa's transportation driving close by. 

Aren't they fun? Can you see one of these in your garden??

In answer to several requests, here's the contact information for the guy who handmakes these twig reindeer:

 Please share your photos of your reindeer when you get one, would love to see them in your garden!



Dry Hydrangeas for Custom Decor

If you like to make dried flower wreaths and dried flower gift tags, hydrangeas are easy to dry and long lasting.

Cut off flower heads past their prime and hang from string tied to a rod in a cool dark place. We have them hanging from a rod hanging over the sink in a dark garage corner.

You can use hydrangeas as they are, which is what I do. You can also spray paint them to add color to a wreath. The dried flowers nicely hold color without drying out.

Great excuse to add more hydrangeas in your garden landscape!


Think Fresh Flowers as Cake Topper!

Fresh flowers are not just for flower vases any more.

I've been known to tuck flowers in all sorts of things - as decorations for gifts, inside a get well card, once in a book as a page marker.

Decorating cakes with flowers out of icing can be fun, but who wants to eat all of that sugar icing - or even cut into the flowers?? At a recent farewell potluck lunch, I was delighted to see the cake decorated with a stunning bouquet of fresh garden flowers, all held in the cake by a small glass flower vase.

Best of all, after the cake is gone, they will still have flowers to enjoy!


Use Favorite Birdhouses as Table Decoration

This little birdhouse was a gift so it had special memories.

Last year part of the roof rotted, so I removed the piece, sanded down the edges and treated the cleaned birdhouse with a couple coats of polyurethane. I then found an old glass bottle that would fit through the opening.

Filled with flowers, the renovated birdhouse works well as an outdoor table decoration under a deck umbrella, or anywhere inside the house where you want some whimsy.


Pick the Right Flower Vase

Giving someone a bouquet of spring flowers out of your garden is a great gift for any occasion. Choosing the right vase makes all the difference in how flowers look, and how long they will last after being picked. I prefer to use flower containers that are rounded at the bottom. The rounded bottom gives cut flowers access to more water, and they won't be quickly traumatized by going dry overnight. So many cut flowers don't last long because they've run out of water!

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Welcome to Made Just For You.

I started Bluebird Gardens in 1998 on the premise that everyone can make
something; they just don’t always think of it as being special.
In my world, it is the thought that counts.
I’ll let you in on a little secret; making something for someone is
sometimes more fun than giving it away.
I’ll be featuring those wonderful homemade handmade things,
and the people who are special enough to get them.

What are you making?


Spring Flowers Make Great Cut Flowers

Welcome spring by giving someone a bouquet of daffodils straight out of your garden.

One of my favorite spring flowers are early daffodils. They are small; they need flower vases that are no more than 6" tall and look good tucked into any nearby corner.

Mid-flowering and late flowering daffodils and tulips will easily fit into standard, taller vases. You can also cut them to fit smaller containers.

Anemones, snow drops, glories of the snow and other small spring flowers will best fit in 2-4" containers.

If you plan to mix daffodils with other spring flowers, let them sit bythemselves in water for a few hours before mixing them. Daffodils have a toxin that will kill other flowers if you mix them immediately. I leave cut daffodils sitting in a vase by themselves overnight, then mix the flowers in the same vase in the morning.

There's nothing like a bouquet of home grown flowers to brighten someone's day, including mine!