Six on Saturday – Irises
As ever I’m late to the party but yesterday was such a nice day I decided to delay sitting at the laptop until this morning and I’m pleased I did as the sky is grey and the garden is being buffeted by a sporadic wind.
I like to try to theme my Six on Saturday posts (when I remember to do them) and this week it had to be Irises. I have a real weakness for Irises of all sorts and am a member of the Iris Society. I suspect I should call myself a disgraced member of the Iris Society as I am incapable of remembering plant names and plant labels never stay in place very long. However, I would argue in my defence that an inability to remember a plant name or where you got the plant from in the first place doesn’t mean you can’t be passionate about a genus and love them very much.
So here are my six for this weekend, all flowering yesterday in the garden. I’m starting with Siberian Irises. The top photo is of a plant given to me by a work colleague who had herself had it for many years, the name long lost. It is so delicate and smaller in flower than the variety below. Also unnamed and again I have had this plant for probably 15 years or more. It doesn’t seem to flower as prolifically as it used to and I’m wondering if it needs dividing, or more moisture.
Now I do know that this is a Pacific Coast Iris and I grew it from seed from the Iris Society about 4 years ago. Last year it flowered for the first time and I seem to remember it had just 2 flowers, this year it has doubled up to 4 flowers. I get the impression that Pacific Coast Irises don’t have named varieties, maybe they cross pollinate too much to be reliable. What I find fascinating about Pacific Coast Irises is that they seem to thrive in the most inhospitable conditions. I have seen them growing in garden alongside dense conifers and in my own garden this plant is thriving next to a large and hungry Rosemary bush. I do wonder why they aren’t recommended more often for those difficult locations, possibly because it seems the only way to acquire them is via seed from the Iris Society or a plant from a friend.
I love this Bearded Iris. I love the deepness of the almost black petals, they are so sumptuous. I have bought many Bearded irises over the years but only seem to have three varieties growing in my garden now. I’m assuming that these are the doers, the ones that stand up to anything thrown at them – persistent rain, dislocation by a poor gardener, all sorts. ‘Langport Wren’ is spread all around the garden, a clump here and a clump there. This plant is on the edge of the new vegetable bed, guarding the lettuces.
Also on the edge of the vegetable bed are some Dutch Iris, or Florists Irises (above and below). I buy bulbs of these most years, apart from last Autumn, and about 50% appear in the Spring and if I am lucky some of them reappear in later years. I just love them. The petals are like silk and they appear on long stems (obviously why florists like them) above the surrounding plants looking impossibly glamorous. They are usually named but the names never stick in my head and I don’t think they matter to be honest.
I hope you enjoyed my Six on Saturday (well Sunday) and thank you to The Propagator for hosting this meme every Saturday, its not always easy to keep up with hosting a meme as I well know so well done.