An Iris Blossom Among Blooms

I haven’t always had a love affair with irises. Don’t get me wrong; I’ve forever found them beautiful, but I mostly admired them in other people’s gardens. All that changed nearly two summers ago when our third grand child was born… a precious baby girl who was given the name Iris. When she entered our lives I admit, I became a bit of a fanatic.

Two days after her birth, while reading the newspaper  I noticed that a local iris group was having a rhizome sale. Well, you can bet I quickly got myself ready for the day and headed out with Mr. Hollyhocks accompanying me to do some shopping. When we arrived at the community center for the sale I excitedly eyed the many tables set up with hundreds of baskets of rhizomes displayed, along with a beautiful photograph of each iris in bloom attached to the baskets. My husband decided to go for a walk while I shopped and came back thirty minutes later to find me with several grocery bags full of rhizomes and I had only covered half of the room. Yeah… and this is when I was quietly and lovingly given an intervention, a reminder that each rhizome cost anywhere from four to eight dollars, depending on the variety, and I had already bagged up about three hundred dollars worth. Even though I reminded him that I was buying rhizomes not only for me but for my daughter in law and her mom,  I quickly realized (even with my new infatuation) that I was going off the deep end. Next came the painful task of choosing which ones to put back. In the end I spent a little over a hundred dollars and potted up one container for my daughter in law, another for her mother, and the third, for me. Last year I bought about a dozen more and planted them in my garden in the fall and this year I can report that I’ve shown great restraint and haven’t  purchased any. I think I’ve got myself under control!

The last two Mother’s Days we’ve gone to a local Iris garden to wander, admire and picnic among these incredible beauties.You can understand my obsession, right? It’s all because of this little blossom! Tell me, gardening friends, have you ever had to have a gardening intervention? Be honest!

It Must be Spring

 

“…I waded out into the midst of the glorious field of gold. All the ground was covered, not with grass and green leaves, but with radiant corollas, about ankle-deep next to the foothills, knee-deep or more five or six miles out…Sauntering in any direction, hundreds of these happy sun plants brushed against my feet at every step, and closed over them as if I were wading in liquid gold. ~John Muir

A sure sign of spring here in the golden state is the brilliant show of our native California poppy (Eschscholzia, californica) blooms brightening hillsides, meadows, roadways and landscapes of all kinds. With delicate cup-like blossoms and feathery foliage, these colorful beauties start adding vibrance to our days in February or March and often last into June.

Glorious fields of gold, indeed!

Happy spring!