Saturday, April 25, 2009

Two of the last three...

These two iris are the last ones to bloom, except one.

This one is "Ruth Raymond Blue". It is not an officially registered iris. It is a spontaneous hybrid that my mother found in my Grandmother's garden, after the garden had been neglected for decades. Mother named it in honor of my Great Aunt Ruth. It is not a "points winner", but it is very hardy and vigorous and the color is really lovely. It is one of the family iris heirlooms.
This one we call "Purple Splash". It was an unregistered seedling that Mother and I grew for display in our garden. Our garden was on tour during the American Iris Society regional convention in 1999 and this variety was sent to us by the hybridizer to grow for two years before the garden tours. The hybridizer decided not to introduce it as a registered cultivar, but we continued to grow it. It is not a 'great' iris - the flowers bloom on stalks that are a little short and the flowers are a bit out of proportion to the plant, but the foliage is dark purple at the base, which adds a lot of interest after the bloom season.

I have one more iris with an unopened bud. It is either "Grape" or "Quaker Lady". Both are historic iris that have very small distinctive bud shapes and the traditional "flag" form. Grape smells exactly like grape Kool-aid! Quaker lady is a very graceful iris in shades of grey and violet. Not very showy, but it is beautiful in its own way and I love it.

This is my iris garden this week. Quite a change from last November!

I realize the climate here is very different from my Kansas garden, but having over 80% of my transplanted iris bloom the next season, especially after such a late planting was such a wonderful surprise!

Now, I just have to be sure to keep them alive through the summer heat!


Anonymous said...

What great pictures of the blooms. Thanks for the overview of your "garden." Love, WS

Iron Needles said...

A very colorful garden! I have had 6 little blooms on my tee tiny iris. Can't wait to see what I have bloom this year.

Martha said...

In Oklahoma when I was little, we ran amok in our neighbors' back yards -- no fences -- everyone's yard was fair game. EXCEPT...Mrs. Spangler's iris bed which she and her husband built (and this was difficult for him because one of his legs was several inches shorter than the other so he had to wear these custom-made shoes--one of which had an extremely thick sole). The Spanglers lived next door and their iris garden was huge (about half of the back yard) and delineated by a pretty brick border. Every kid in the neighborhood knew you couldn't trespass in Mrs. Spangler's iris bed (or pick her blossoms, although this was very tempting). Anyway, your iris are so beautiful, they remind me of Mrs. Spangler's -- and that is a major compliment which any of my sisters would confirm.