Lily-Of-The-Valley, Dressed Up For A Party

– Posted in: How-to
12 comments

I‘m glad you enjoyed my post on forcing lily-of-the-valley. What I didn’t tell you in that first post is that I had plans for those flowers. I intended them to be the centerpiece at my daughter-in-law’s baby shower. (Yes, I’m going to be a grandma!)

lily of the valley in tureen

Lily-of-the-valley looks even prettier in a soup tureen fancy container.

I wanted to transfer them from their clay pots to a pretty container. (I didn’t take any pictures of the transfer because it was the day of the party, and I was on a deadline, and I forgot.) It wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. For one thing, the pips were really jammed in there. I had to run a knife along the inner edge of each pot, and poke through the drainage hole, several times before they loosened up. I was really afraid my grip would slip and the beautiful flowers would smash into the table, totally ruined. But that didn’t happen.

When they finally slipped out, I was surprised to see how dry the soil was at the bottom, where the roots were, even though it was moist at the top. The tureen I wanted to use wasn’t as deep as the clay pots they had been in, so I had to gently remove the potting mix from the roots, smoosh the pips into the tureen as carefully as I could, and then repack the mix around the roots all the while holding individual plants upright.

lily of the valley in mug and tureen

I didn’t have room for all of them in the tureen, so I planted the rest in this mug.

lily of the valley tea party

The flowers fit in well with the shower’s tea party theme.

I was very pleased with how it all turned out. And I think my daughter-in-law was, too, since she enclosed her thank-you note in this envelope:Since the tureen has no drainage hole, I’m going to have to be especially careful to water not too much and not too little. If the plants start looking poorly, I will repot them once again in a container even bigger than the clay pots, giving them as much room to grow roots as possible and better drainage. But as long as they seem happy, I’ll keep them where they are, and plant them outdoors this coming spring.

About the Author

Kathy Purdy is a colchicum evangelist, converting unsuspecting gardeners into colchicophiles. She would be delighted to speak to your group about colchicums or other gardening topics. Kathy’s been writing since 4th grade, gardening since high school, and blogging since 2002.

In its own way, frost may be one of the most beautiful things to happen in your garden all year . . . Don’t miss it. Like all true beauty, it is fleeting. It will grace your garden for but a short while this morning. . . . For this moment, embrace frost as the beautiful gift that it is.

~Philip Harnden in A Gardener’s Guide to Frost: Outwit the Weather and Extend the Spring and Fall Seasons

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Barbara Phillips-Conroy February 9, 2018, 9:50 am

Kathy,
How absolutely lovely! Congratulations to you and your family on the new addition. I’d been told a story years ago about Lily of the Valley Day in France (La Fete du Muguet) on May 1st. Men and women head off to the French woods on the national holiday in search of Muguet du Bois! (Or at least that’s their stated intention at the beginning of the afternoon.) Fortunately vendors on every corner sell them, so if there’s no luck on the hunt, you don’t come back empty-handed.
You’ve put a little bug in my brain to see if I can accomplish something similar with the patches I curse every year. Will diarize the time to dig ’em out and pot them up in the garage. I’ll be delighted if mine look half as good as yours!

Frank February 4, 2018, 1:05 pm

They really do look perfect on the table. What a setting, I’d almost consider trying some tea 😉

Kathy Purdy February 4, 2018, 8:17 pm

The setting is a credit to my daughter, who hosted the baby shower.

Peg Cook February 2, 2018, 12:13 pm

CONGRATULATIONS!, Kathy. What a blessing it is to have something very positive to look forward to. BTW, I LOVE lily-of-valley and have enjoyed watching your journey with them this miserable January. Thank you for the bright spot of my month!!! Peg

Joanna February 2, 2018, 11:29 am

You’re going to love being a grandma – Congratulations! I have a love/hate relationship with lily-of-the-valley, but I LOVE your idea of forcing them. The fragrance inside in the middle of winter would be heady.

Pat Leuchtman February 1, 2018, 2:43 pm

Congratulations on your upcoming grandmotherhood. I hope your that baby won’t be living too far away. The LOV were perfect for the occasion.

Cynthia February 1, 2018, 8:28 am

Everything looked lovely and the LOVs just upped the aroma atmosphere! I look forward to seeing them proliferate in your garden and bring you lots of enjoyment in the future!
Congratulations on the upcoming arrival too!

Lisa at Greenbow February 1, 2018, 6:58 am

What a beautiful table setting. Those ladies felt special sitting there with Grandma I am sure. The LOV look perfect in that tureen. A perfect setting.

Ian Lumsden January 31, 2018, 5:44 pm

Beautifully dressed table. I also like the use of moss to dress the flower arrangement. And you do not mention fragrance…… Congratulations on the grandma promotion.

Kathy Purdy January 31, 2018, 7:12 pm

Thank you for your kind words. Yes, they are fragrant. I mentioned that in my previous lotv post.

Patterson Webster January 31, 2018, 2:19 pm

Congratulations on the successful transfer of the lovely lilies of the valley — and even more congrats on becoming a grandmother. It’s a wonderful place to be.

Kathy Purdy January 31, 2018, 3:20 pm

Thank you, Pat!