Thursday, March 18, 2010

Iris for early Spring

These are not the large irises of summer, though the later ones have nothing on these in terms of colors and patterns. The difference is that these are all less than 6 inches tall. They bloom with the earliest of the crocuses, just after the snowdrops. This first is one that we've grown for many years. They hang around for awhile, and then disappear. Since they're not expensive, we just buy a few every couple of years so we always have some. The name is Iris danfordiae. They are pretty much all yellow, with only a tiny bit of pattern. Grow them in full sun with excellent drainage.
This next one is one of my favorites with a most unusualy color. They look pale blue here, but the color is more of a grey/blue/green, very pale and with white, yellow and darker blue markings. They thrive in about the same conditions as the first one, but seem to be able to take some shade. These seem to expand every year and luckily we haven't had anything that like to eat them, despite bunnies munching on other things in the vicinity. Her name is Iris histrioides 'Katharine Hodgkin'.
This last one is another Iris histrioides named 'George'. The color when they first come up is almost black, but after a day or so, they lighten to this nice purple. They have very distinct markings in yellow and white on the falls.

Not a clue what I'll write about tomorrow. I suppose I'll just wait and see what is blooming at lunchtime when I take a break from weeding to take pictures.

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