Iris Reticulata ‘Pauline’

In an exciting new development, the following post can now be enjoyed as a podcast as well as in text and photographs. Cultivars of Iris reticulata have enjoyed regular and enthusiastic coverage in this blog over the years. There are two good reasons for this. First, they bloom in February when few other plants are […]

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February Flowers

It’s that time of year when galanthophiles (the polite name for snowdrop bores) start to bombard social media with images of their pearly-white treasures. Whilst I would not go as far as to say ‘they all look the same to me’, it’s certainly the case that one must be a) an ardent lover of winter, […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Iris reticulata ‘Sheila Ann Germaney’

For two years in a row I have waxed lyrical about Iris ‘Katherine Hodgkin’, a reticulated hybrid with bleached denim-blue flowers that remind me of the ghastly jeans I cherished in the 80s. This year, for a change, I thought I would try out a sister cultivar, Iris ‘Sheila Ann Germaney’, to see if I could spot the difference. […]

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Gold Rush

There is one colour that’s inextricably linked with early spring, and that’s yellow. Whether it’s canary, lemon, sunflower, primrose or golden, yellow is the colour that heralds the start of the gardening year. Yellow flowers spread their sunshine at a time when very little is forthcoming from above. But when the sun’s rays do target their glossy […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Iris reticulata ‘Spot On’

As I predicted exactly two weeks ago, the latest bulb to start flowering in our coastal garden is Iris reticulata  ‘Spot On’, a new hybrid developed by Canadian breeder Alan McMurtie. It’s a tiny little thing by reticulata standards, a cross between Iris reticulata ‘Purple Gem’ and Iris reticulata var. bakeriana from Turkey. Each bulb carries pretty flowers […]

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Sea Air and Shopping

Over the last two days I’ve experienced complete sensory overload. Yesterday’s highlight was the RHS London Plant and Design Show, where I was dazzled by oceans of irises and fountains of rare and beautiful snowdrops. Considering the winter we’ve had, the likes of Jacques Amand (above) and Avon Bulbs still managed to create extraordinary displays, […]

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Inspiring Irises

A punishing week at work, now followed by a debilitating bout of tonsillitis, has left me feeling less than enthused about the arrival of February and yet more chilly weather. Having decided to be officially grumpy today, I had to quickly change my mind after spotting a pot of cheerful Iris reticulata “Gordon” (above) when […]

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