May 23, 2019

A Little Love for Irises

We have a little patch of irises in front of our house that completely surprised me the first year it bloomed.  I love moving to a new house and discovering what plants are growing where and our current property has been so fun to learn about and discover.  Even going on almost our third year here, I’m still discovering new flowers around it.  In that same little iris patch (above), which is growing right in the grass, are some daffodils and a small rose bush (more like a branch 😉 and some little white wildflowers/ weeds that I love.)

 

 

Photo here

Our irises are a sort of golden-peachy color with pinky-maroon petals which is a little different from the typical purple-blue or yellow irises I’m used to.  I remember being so excited when my mom and I moved into our townhouse when I was ten years old because our next door neighbors (who were incredibly sweet!!) were really into gardening and had created a little allee of iris between the pair of double fences separating our properties (we were both in end units so there was  a good amount of gardening space there.) I used to take my friends on “tours” and remember getting wet from the iris leaves as they leaned in on both sides, touching you as you passed through it.  At my height then- and irises being fairly tall- it was magical.

I had a little time in the afternoon while the girls were sleeping recently and saw that the irises were blooming like crazy so I headed out to cut a bunch for an arrangement.

 

There is something so crazy satisfying to me about growing and harvesting something for use- whether food, aesthetics, home remedies or projects.  I just really love the whole process and I love seeing the evolution of a plant through its stages.

I often wrestle with cutting or harvesting things because I love how they look so much when they’re growing outside and I don’t want to take away from that but it’s always worth it and something else usually blooms to be enjoyed.

 

Staight up heaven at Schreiner’s Gardens

 

Photo from here

The iris takes its name from the Greek word for ‘rainbow’ and is also the name from the Greek goddess of the rainbow, Iris, (according to my friend Wikipedia) which total sense as irises seem to come in almost any color you can think of…

Image from Schreiner’s Gardens in Salem, Oregon = just wow!!

 

Better Homes & Gardens has a great article on growing and caring for them here and the good news is that apparently, “anyone can grow an iris” – woohoo, I love hearing that!!

 

A perfect little iris patch from Ourlittleacre.blogspot.com

 

Incredible irises at Chateau Sewarlock

 

More colorful bearded irises at Schreiner’s Iris Gardens— just amazing!!! I think there looks to be some lupine and foxglove mixed in behind it? OK- I NEEEEEED to make this happen somewhere!!!!

 

Photo by Tatiana Skorokhod

 

As I cut the irises, I remembered that we have some amazing fern growing on the side of the big hill our house sits on, so I went down to cut some…

 

…I couldn’t believe it but the rain had washed away a little bit of one side of the hill and the wild grasses and plants hadn’t grown over the whole thing yet so I could see that we had flagstone steps down it!!!  We’d known that they used to be there because we’d seen some rebar but we thought they’d crumbled  or washed away but it turns out they’d actually been buried and had sunken into the ground leaving the rebar poking up.  We’d gotten a quote over $10,000 a year or so ago to put in steps down the hill so we were BEYOND excited at this discovery.  They need some work but it won’t be anywhere close to that number to repair them.  In the photo below, I was more than a little giddy and I’d just cleared off the top one.  (You can also see the fern I love so much in the basket)

 

 

Here’s a photo in the fern patch and I swear it was just really windy and I was trying to get the hair out of my face though it totally looks like I struck a pose and I’ll take it.  But check out just HOW MUCH fern there is!! I love cutting it for random arrangements and even to display on its own.  It presses really well too…

 

We spend a lot of time on the hill in front of our house because it overlooks our pond and field… We have a little firepit there when it’s cooler out surrounded by logs.  (This is probably waaaay too much information but this winter, we re-routed our three dogs’ invisible fence line so that they can’t be in the grass on the hill anymore in order to be able to safely (sanitary-wise) go barefoot and throw blankets down to play with the kids there.) They hang in the gravel right near us now when we’re out there (Sorry pups!!) but have the rest of the property to run around on.

 

 

Sometimes I stand on the hill and just try to exhale.  I might sneak out after dinner or in the morning when I first wake up but it always kind of grounds me and gives me a bit of energy… and makes me feel thankful.  I honestly don’t do it nearly often enough- not even every week- but it takes only a few minutes and I should do it more.

 

 

I got the picking basket from the Monticello Shop (which I find a good amount of garden things at) and I love love love it.  It makes  me feel like I have the leisurely life of some lady from a fairytale who picks flowers, even if for only a moment while I’m using it.

I’d love to design one with slightly different proportions (I need more room for my monkey arms!!) and in a slightly lighter color one day…

And on the design note- I’m off to North Carolina today to see & sit in the first prototypes for our upholstery collection with Taylor King and couldn’t be more excited!!!  I think I have five or six pieces to check out!!  They said it usually takes a few tweaks to get the exact look and comfort we’re after so I’m planning on a few more trips down this summer.

 

Here’s a little shopping board based on the above pics with links to my pants/ shoes and  similar t’s/ pants.  (Pup not included unless you want to borrow her- email me 😉 ) Just click on the items to shop them!  Quick notes: The picking basket is from the Monticello Shop and I wasn’t able to link it up through the collage.  I think my pants (which are the centered image on the collage) are currently sold out in the color I have but they’re still available in green. They come with a cool little shoelace-like rope in lieu of a belt and sort of just cinch around your waist and are super-comfortable.  This look could totally work with any of the pants on the board and I love how casual/ natural the rope feels. And the shoes are those same shoes I wear all the time and also have in black here.  I’m obsessed.

 

Hope you enjoyed this little peek into my happy time & iris love today! Headed out but I’ll be posting behind-the-scenes peeks at our upholstery line in Instagram stories!! xo

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Gilda Stigliano
5 years ago

also called “Flags”! love them so much.. My mother was an avid gardener and we had such interesting iris plants in my childhood!

Guest
Suzanne
5 years ago

Lauren, Irises actually need some sunlight. I once planted a “shade” bed and included some hybrid Irises I had been given. They hadn’t bloomed after two years even though they grew leaves, so I did investigation with the person who gave me the bulbs. They said they should be in full sun at least half the day but not all day. They bloomed the next year and have continued for the past 10 years. My housekeeper couldn’t take the mess anymore (I’m lazy about weeding and getting rid of invasive plants) and cleared out everything except the Irises and day lilies in my flower bed two weeks ago, so they’re growing especially well this spring. I have apricot, bright yellow, and old fashioned lavendar. I used to have blue, green, and orange, but hybrid Irises sometimes revert to the original color, which is what happened here.

Guest
glenda lafont
5 years ago

Your bearded Iris’s are beautiful. We did not have a very cold winter so mine did not bloom.
Now we have hybrid Louisiana irises that bloom every spring. Flag irises are the common
yellow ones that we don’t plant near the hybrids because they will totally take over.

Guest
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5 years ago

Everything is so lush and green, beautiful.
We live in SoCal and except for golf courses, it’s quite brown everywhere – despite the rain we’ve had.

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