Iris season is in full force here and although I’d rather report back that projects are getting done and plants are getting planted, they’re not. I spend a considerable amount of time relaxing in a shady spot just enjoying spring. I like to think we deserve it after last winter, but things would probably be the same had it been warm and rainy all February.
Siberian iris. Hard to believe patches of these grow wild somewhere, to me it might be one of the most beautiful flowers. I’d grow more but they are over so quickly and the letdown might be too much 🙂
While I continue my hard labour in the vegetable patch, digging and prepping planting beds, I worry that bearded iris might make a play towards taking over more broccoli acreage. They grow so well there and the open spots would look so much nicer blooming blue instead of pushing out another potato.
Bearded iris “snowbrook” putting on a beautiful show… but lacking something….. maybe it’s just a little too short and congested to have all the grace I expect from my iris plantings.
One iris which will stay on the edges of the vegetable beds for a few more years yet is the bearded iris “ominous stranger”. It’s not the heaviest bloomer, it doesn’t show up well amongst the brighter colors, but it does have a graceful subtlety which calls for closer inspection.
I need to stay away from the ruffly, overblown, modern bearded iris. I could loose the entire vegetable patch if I start dabbling in these. This is iris “ominous stranger”.
I did try to start a dedicated iris bed when deck building displaced some of the old patch, but it’s at an end of the garden where a mulching mistake resulted in too many seedlings of little bluestem prairie grass. Grass seedlings and an iris bed don’t mix well, and then throw in a little giving-up and you’ve just added another project on to the to-do list. Still it’s impressive to see which iris continue to thrive amongst the neglect.
Iris “honorabile” carrying on in spite of the uninvited grass and blue columbines which have moved in next door. A clump of the late blooming daffodil “baby boomer” also needs an escape plan from this bed.
My favorite this week in the weed bed is this sport of iris “honorabile” called “darius”. Just one little genetic oops happens and the tint of the falls changes from maroon to more of a violet purple? (please forgive my lack of any color accuracy beyond red and blue).
Historic iris “darius”, a sport of honorabile with a nice blend of yellow-lemon-purple(?) on small graceful plants.
Here’s another impossible-for-me-to-describe color. An unknown modern iris is doing quite well in the weed bed, throwing up a healthy stalk of some ruffled murky unknown blend of pink.
Any guesses on the ID of this one? It was a surprise slipped into a trade box from a great gardener in upstate NY. (note healthy weeds in background)
Idleness and plant neglect seems to be a theme this week, so I might as well stick with it. This unknown historic was traded to me and to date hadn’t bloomed. Last summer while debating a spot to replant it in I set it down between some tomatoes and succeeded in ignoring it for the entire growing season. Maybe it got scared, maybe it enjoyed the company of tomatoes, either way it finally sent up a stalk of these nicely patterned blooms.
Guilt is sometimes a good enough reason to keep a plant. This unknown iris will stay just because of the abuse it’s endured…. that and I like the veined falls… it just can’t stand next to one of the fancy modern iris or it will be completely ignored.
There’s plenty to enjoy in the garden as it turns the page into summer and June. The first rose opened today and the sun is shining bright, but I spend way to much time overseeing things from a seated position. The queen of the prairie and I sit in the shade of weedy sumacs and contemplate things.
Every garden needs a good vantage point from which to keep an eye on things, and although this might be more trailer park than Downtown Abbey, it suits me just fine 🙂
I would claim big plans for today, but it’s Sunday, and the day of rest must be observed. Spring goes by way too fast to begin with so in my book there’s nothing wrong with trying to enjoy every minute of every beautiful day.