“Year Round Color”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana
When I first started gardening, I bought a book that was about having flowers and color year round in your garden. Unfortunately, the book was not that helpful because most of the flowers it featured do not grow well this far south. However, I persevered with my idea, and it seems that it has finally paid off now because there seems to be something blooming just about all the time lately.
Today, when I came home from work, the weather was wonderful – sunny, cool, and breezy. The amaryllis I have recently written about still had many blooms. The petunias are still looking good, and, of course, the violas are still holding on. So, what’s new? The Louisiana Irises are just starting to bloom. Yesterday, I showed one of my new varieties, Marie Dolors, and today another LA Iris was blooming.
This is a smaller, more common iris than Marie Dolors. My husband brought several of these home from a fishing trip a few years ago. His fishing partner had these and suggested that dear hubby take some home to me. I think these originally came from the swamps around here because they look just like some of the wild ones you see there. While Louisiana irises grow in water or at a pond’s edge, they also do well mixed in with other annuals or small perennials. They just need about a half a day of sun and moisture, especially in the spring when they are actively growing. These irises also prefer acidic soil, about what would make an azalea happy.
I have another iris that should be blooming tomorrow, and am holding out hope that three more that I planted last fall will produce flowers this year. It seems that my plan to have something blooming year round has finally become a reality.
Update 4/4/09 Patrick O’Conner, who is a Louisiana iris grower and breeder, informs me this is not a Louisiana iris but is iris virginica, or Southern Blue Flag iris. It, too, is a native in this area. I am glad to know exactly what this iris is. Thanks for the info, Patrick.