Each day in the garden now is an adventure. This week’s specialty seems to be Iris. I will admit that I don’t have any bearded iris (Iris germanica) in my garden because the maintenance is higher than with other species. They are subject to borer and need to be divided frequently.
I love Iris sibirica (Siberian Iris) because they’re basically foolproof. They typically grow three feet high.In my driveway bed, there is a large stand of ‘Caesar’s Brother”, a classic purple, that has just started to bloom. By the end of the week, there will be a large mass of it and next to it will be ‘Snow Queen’, a serendipitous mislabeled plant. In another bed, I have a reblooming Siberian, ‘Welcome Returns’, which is more of a blue than a purple. In the back yard, I have both ‘Blue Moon’ and ‘Perry’s Blue’. Although I love the flowers, they are fleeting but the slender and linear foliage provides a long season of contrasting foliage to many of the surrounding perennials.
There are also some dwarf cultivars that I’ve planted at the bottom of a hill. ‘Baby Sister’ is a lovely blue while ‘Little White’ provides a nice color contrast.
I also have some Iris cristata (Crested Iris). My first one was ‘Powder Blue Giant’ which has done quite well considering that it is sited in a very dry site. Then I acquired ‘Eco Giant Orchid’ or so I thought. However, when it bloomed last year it was white so I think it’s probably ‘Eco White Angel’. The flowers are quite large for this species and the petals have a golden yellow splotch.
Being a sucker for variegated foliage, I had to have Iris pallida ‘Variegata’. It has been slow to spread but is finally developing into a medium sized clump. The flowers again are fleeting but a lovely shade of lavender and the foliage is stunning from April through November. Which irises do you love?