Friday, March 18, 2016

For the love of Irises

Springtime means irises and I'm lucky to have many varieties in my garden. Did you know that name iris comes from the Greek work for rainbow.  I have a pluthera of blue/purple, white, and yellow colored iris perennials. Most I've secured free off Craigslist or Freecycle. I have a few unique and native ones I purchased which I'm nurturing. 

It's not a native flower for U.S. gardeners - its originally from Syria. While used in perfumes, medicinals, and even to produce beer and wine, for me it's purely decorative.  I do have some challenges being in a cold climate garden. Not all iris varieties will do well with such a short growing period. 

Want to get inspired by iris? Check to see if there is a local flower show with this theme or try to visit one of the Historic Iris Display Gardens. My closed one in a state away and they have a wonderful end of season "garage sale" which I'm already planning on attending in July. Now that's planning! 

Iris - endless variety

Here are some tips for growing iris in a cold climate garden: