Crouch­ing tigers

Lily stems are not the eas­i­est flow­ers to ar­range in a nat­u­ral style be­cause they are quite stiff and un­yield­ing. I de­cided to make the most of their rigid­ity by plac­ing them al­most hor­i­zon­tally to cre­ate a low, wide out­line. The softer, more flex­i­ble, fr

Country Life Every Week - - Contents -

In­spi­ra­tion for a spec­tac­u­lar sum­mer flower ar­range­ment with orange lilies and roses, plus sweet peas and gyp­sophila

Ex­tract from ‘The Flower Book’, by Rachel Siegfried, pho­tographs by Clare West, pub­lished by Dor­ling Kin­der­s­ley (£30)

You will need

2 lily stems (Lil­ium Tiger Ba­bies) 5 sweet-pea stems with ten­drils (Lathyrus odor­a­tus Spring Sun­shine Bur­gundy) 3 gy­posphila stems (Gyp­sophila Ele­gans Rosea) 5 roses (Rosa Just Joey) Medium-sized, round, stoneware pot Chicken wire Pot tape Flo­ral snips


1 Push a chicken-wire ball into the pot, se­cur­ing with a cross of pot tape. Then, fill the pot with wa­ter.

2 Cut the lily stems to about three times the height of the pot. Po­si­tion them op­po­site each other at a sharp, al­most hor­i­zon­tal an­gle—these will de­fine the shape of the ar­range­ment.

3 Nes­tle the roses in the mid­dle of the ar­range­ment. Hold them up to the pot to judge po­si­tion and stem length be­fore cut­ting and plac­ing. The stems will need to be cut rel­a­tively short.

4 Cut the sweet-pea stems to a sim­i­lar length to the lily stems (around three times the height of the pot) and slip them be­tween the lilies and roses.

5 Use the gyp­sophila to cre­ate some frothy fill in be­tween the lily stems, hold­ing up the stems to ther arange­ment to judge po­si­tion and length.


Re­plen­ish the wa­ter ev­ery 2 days. The sweet peas, roses, and gyp­sophila will fin­ish af­ter 3–5 days, but the lilies will con­tinue for an­other 10 days. Ei­ther re­place the wilt­ing flow­ers, or sim­ply re­move themt to en­joy the stark beauty of the lilies by them­selves.

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