An Iris Obsession

I‘ve always liked Iris. They’re bold, frilly, and tough. The limitless varieties are pretty amazing too! While I’ve always admired them, my obsession is rather new and it started very simply. Earlier in the summer of 2016, I was beginning my quest to find heirloom, heritage, forgotten perennials with a story, and then I was given a box full of uprooted Iris. The wonderful lady who owns the barn where my horse is boarded is a fellow gardener. Many of her treasures have been handed down to her or collected from friends. This box of Iris came from her Mother’s farm. The obsession was born.

Iris are so kind and forgiving to digging up, cutting back, shipping, and general neglect. They are the perfect starter for newbie gardeners and newbie salvagers, like myself. By the end of the summer, a few short months here in Wisconsin, I had a huge collection started. My beds are now laden with NOID hand-me-downs, historic beauties, and a few classics.

When we bought our cute, little ranch house in the spring of 2016, there was one variety of Iris growing on the large almost 1/4 acre lot. A lovely little red and yellow NOID. My list has grown to the following (and this is just what I’ve collected in 2016!):

  • Mary Street NOID:  this is the little surprise that was growing in our backyard
  • Pratt Blue Iris NOID: collected June, 2016 from Paula Pratt in Bancroft WI
  • City of Stratford (Miles, 1946): purchased in July, 2016 from the HIPS sale
  • Coralie (Ayres, 1932): purchased in July, 2016 from the HIPS sale
  • Lip Service (Ghio, 2000): purchased in July, 2016 from the HIPS sale
  • Mme. Cherie (Sturtevant, 1918): purchased in July, 2016 from the HIPS sale
  • Florentina (1500): purchased from a Missouri grower on Etsty in Aug, 2016
  • NOID Purple: purchased from a Missouri grower on Etsy in Aug, 2016 (this was supposed to be something different, but it is still pretty!)
  • Ruby Mine (Schreiner, 1960-1969): purchased at LOWE’S on clearance, 2016
  • Mom’s White NOID: collected September, 2016 from my mom’s house in Danville, Indiana
  • Mom’s Purple and White NOID: collected September, 2016 from my mom’s house in Danville, Indiana
  • Superstition (Schreiner, 1977) I now believe this to be Black Fantasy, (Meek, 1988): collected September, 2016 from my mom’s house in Danville, Indiana
  • Beverly Sills (Hager, 1979): collected September, 2016 from my mom’s house in Danville, Indiana
  • Aunt Janet’s Iris: collected twice once in August of 2016, and again in May, 2017 from three different places on her property in Adams, Wisconsin, They are yellow, and two other colors.
  • Bewilderbeast (Kasperek, 1995): purchased in 2016 at Cox’s Plant Farm in Clayton, Indiana
  • Verigated Iris: collected from Jung’s GC in the fall of 2016. Stevens Point, WI
  • Roche-A-Cri: collected May, 2017 from a mowed-over section near a park sign, Adams, Wisconsin
  • Elvira/Plover: collected May, 2017 from a small patch of woods along the hwy 51 in Plover, Wisconsin
  • Pratt’s Flavescens: collected June/July, 2017 from Pratt Farm in Bancroft, Wisconsin
  • Pratt’s Purple & White NOID: collected June/July 2017 from Pratt Farm in Bancroft, Wisconsin
  • Pratt’s Mauve and Yellow NOID: collected June/July 2017 from Pratt Farm in Bancroft, Wisconsin
  • Pratt’s Mystery NOID: collected June/July 2017 from Pratt Farm in Bancroft, WI
  • Grandma Pete’s Iris: collected June, 2017 from my Grandma and Grandpa Petersen’s house in Omaha, Nebraska
  • Dump Iris: Some times…you just have to rescue trash plants. Collected July, 2017 in Stevens Point, Wisconsin
  • Doxa (Sass, 1929): purchased July, 2017 from the HIPS sale
  • Sultry Mood (Schreiner, 1989): purchased July, 2017 from the HIPS sale
  • NOID-345 pink and purple: purchased July, 2017 from the HIPS sale
  • The following iris were purchased in August, 2017 from Blue J Iris in Alliance, Nebraska:
    • Believe in Magic (Jedlicka, 2007)
    • Three Ring Circus (Jedlicka, 2007)
    • Anaconda Love (Kasparek, 1999)
    • King Tush (Kasparek, 1997)
    • Laced Cotton (Schreiner, 1980)
    • Pink Tiger (El Dorado Gardens, 1964)
    • Python’z Parasol (Kasparek, 2001)
    • Quaint Lady (Lyons, 1988)
    • Spring Pleasure (Shoop, 1988)
    • Sultan’s Daughter (Blyth, 1995)
    • Tootsie (Nelson, 1987)
  • Great Smokey Dawn (Schreiner, 2012): collected November 2017 Jung’s GC, Stevens Point, Wisconsin
  • Conjuration (Byers, 1989): collected November 2017, Jung’s GC, Stevens Point, Wisconsin
  • Mystic Muse (Schreiner, 1993): collected November 2017 Jung’s GC Stevens Point, Wisconsin
  • Pink Sails (Sass, 1950): collected November 2017 Jung’s GC, Stevens Point, Wisconsin
  • Potato Farm Ditch: collected November 2017 in Bancroft, Wisconsin
  • Jurrasic Park (Lauer, 1995): purchased in September, 2017 at Cox’s Plant Farm, Clayton, Indiana
  • I already have one Iris purchase out from Stout Gardens, for 2018, which includes:
    • Oaxaca, (Williamson, 2001)
    • Day Glow, (Keppel, 1996)
    • Fuzzy Wuzzy Rocket (Jedlicka, 2010)
    • Lady Friend (Ghio, 1980)
    • Wild West Wind (Baumunk, 2000)
    • Fantasy Ride (Duncan, 2009)
    • Cowboy’s Journey (B. Nichols, 2009)
    • Cantina (Monty Byers, 1990)
  • Dangerous Mood (Schreiner, 2004) purchased at Wal-Mart, 2018
  • NOID “Taco”, purchased at a garage sale in Stevens Point, 2018
  • NOID “Cornflower and White,” purchased at a garage sale in Stevens Point, 2018
  • Gay Parasol (1973, Schreiner) purchased at a garage sale in Stevens Point, 2018
  • Mogen David (1958, Wolff) purchased at the Lincoln Center Plant Sale, Stevens Point, 2018
  • Neutron Dance (Blyth, 1987) purchased at Portage Co Master Gardeners Sale, Stevens Point, 2018

 

2017 Iris Pictures!