I took this photo of a globe artichoke in the garden towards the end of October. I was particularly attracted to the flower bud as it had started to develop a mauve colouring on the margins of the petals.

A month later at the end of  November I made this arrangement using the flower, and first published these two photos on the 3rd of December. It has now been out of water for two weeks and the stem and petals have begun to dry and shrivel. However, to my complete surprise this week the inflorescence, the 'choke' part of the flower, started to open.

To arrange the flower I chose a vase, by Graeme Wilkie, from this year's firing of the large anagama kiln at Qdos Gallery. 

This photo shows the vase as I first saw it in October before it was fired. It is the taller vessel on the left side of the photo.

The artichoke is a member of the thistle family and this is especially evident once the flower opens. Here I have arranged the flower, for a second time, in the new large vase with three dried aspidestra leaves, that are just peeping over the rim. The vase suits the flower well, because the natural ash glaze has a soft mauve flush. The reverse side of this vase is an intense orange which I hope to utilise in another arrangement soon.

Greetings from Christopher
17th December 2016

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