The Iridaceae (Iris family) Thread 2014

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by longk, Apr 6, 2014.

  1. longk

    longk Total Gardener

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    I seem to be developing more of an interest in the Iridaceae family and thought that as they are so popular it would be an idea to have a thread devoted to discussion and photos of the family.

    I'm particularly interested in the African and Australian species. From Africa I have Dietes bicolor growing from seed and a blooming D.iridioides.................
    [​IMG]

    D.iridioides is unusual in as much as the flower stem can (and frequently does apparently) last more than one season. My stem is now starting its second season.

    I've grown Diplarrena latifolia and D.moraea from Australia, but lost both to the weather and poor care. This is D.latifolia..................
    [​IMG]

    One of the most spectacular members of the family comes from the Mediterranean region - Hermodactylus tuberosus..................
    [​IMG]

    It dislikes being moved so can take a year or two to settle in before blooming, but after that it's a hardy and reliable spring bloomer.

    Of the true Iris family I have two firm favourites;
    The spring blooming dwarf Katherine Hodgkin...............
    [​IMG]

    The second one is the late spring blooming Iris japonica.........................
    [​IMG]

    Both are 100% hardy and reliable.

    I'm also fond of I.foetidissima. Some call it a weed as it self seeds freely, but I love the way that no two plants seem to produce blooms the same.

    So please feel free to share your photos and thoughts on Iridaceae here.
     
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    • NigelJ

      NigelJ Total Gardener

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      Regarding I.foetidissima I have this "interesting" native plant growing in dry shade (under conifers). Initially I just mowed it off with everything else but after a few years when it was still around I gave in sort of gracefully and now have a number of clumps. I like the bright orange seeds in the autumn/winter, they give a welcome splash of colour.
      Nigel
       
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      • longk

        longk Total Gardener

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        I really should cut mine off before they ripen, but I'm a little addicted to the variation that occurs.
         
      • Kristen

        Kristen Under gardener

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        I have two from CGF that I am hoping will be stunners:

        Iris Harriette Halloway
        [​IMG]

        Iris Jane Phillips AGM
        [​IMG]

        Both have Bob's score = 8 :)
         
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        • NigelJ

          NigelJ Total Gardener

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          Two gladioli that I grow are.
          Gladiolus tristis
          Gladiolus tristis 2.JPG
          This I grew from seed a few years ago and has now clumped up nicely. Mine are non scented or at least I can't smell them.
          Gladiolus huttonii
          Gladiolus huttonii.JPG
          Another South African gladiolus.
           
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          • longk

            longk Total Gardener

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            A couple of the variations that I have on I.foetidissima in the garden..............
            [​IMG]

            [​IMG]

            @Kristen - I only have the one bearded Iris here.....................[​IMG]

            You would like the Iris bed at OBG I reckon...................[​IMG]

            @NigelJ - forgot all about Gladioli! Some of the species are stunning. I have high hopes for G.orchidflorus which I have growing from seed....................[​IMG]
             
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            • NigelJ

              NigelJ Total Gardener

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              I'm currently waiting/hoping for some G flanaganii seed to germinate. I haven't come across G.orchidflorus before.
              I also have a number of Watsonia and Dierama scattered around the garden and the greenhouse is currently playing host to several large pots of freesias.
              Nigel
               
            • longk

              longk Total Gardener

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              • NigelJ

                NigelJ Total Gardener

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                @longk
                Thank you for the links. Scampton Succulents have their own website now, as well as the fleabay one. http://scamptonsucculents.mybisi.com/ Certainly offer some interesting seeds and I shall have a good look at them. I see they do Stapeliads another family I'm interested in.
                 
              • longk

                longk Total Gardener

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                @NigelJ - I've had great success with Lachenalia from Scamptons.

                From the S/African site the Ferraria species I had were close to 100% as were the Gladioli. It's the end of the SA season at the moment too which should be good for freshness.
                 
              • PeterS

                PeterS Total Gardener

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                Nice idea for a thread - LongK. It would be lovely to see more single family threads. This one made me do a bit of research to see what defines a member of this family. :-

                1) A monocot herb (ie non woody) growing from a rhizome or corm/tuber
                2) Leaves opposite - ie at 180 degrees to each other.
                3) All parts in threes - ie 3 sepals and 3 petals, the sepals tend to be colourful like petals, but are often different from the petals. 3 stamen and 3 pistils.
                4) When in flower there are 2 papery bracts below the flower.

                I was also interesting to look in Wilkipedia and see how many members there were.

                I love your Dietes and Nigel's Gladiolii - but have never come across them before.

                Aristea major.jpg
                I have been growing Aristea majus (above) for a couple of years - but mine hasn't flowered yet.

                chasmanthe-floribunda.gif
                I have also been Growing Chasmanthe for several years - and it too hasn't flowered. In fact its leaf growths has been most erratic and out of season. I am hoping that its now under glass it might behave itself. It's tender but wants to grow and flower when its too cold to put it outside.

                gladiolus_byzantium.jpg
                Gladiolus byzantinus. This was a favorite of Christopher Lloyd's and it was a long time before I managed to find some bulbs, having failed to grow it from seed. Its perfectly hardy and has flowered well in my garden - though the photo is from Crocus and not mine. This year there seem to be even more than last year - so it seems to be happy and multiplying.

                I am also trying to grow Hermodactylus tuberosus for the first time - so delighted to see what it should look like. And also growing Freesias.
                 
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                • longk

                  longk Total Gardener

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                  Winter growing and spring blooming, so under coolish glass sounds good.
                  That is one of the problems with many South African species!

                  I have G.communis/G.byzantinus (the too are often confused) and I also find it reliably hardy and that it freely multiplies. I like the fact that it is early too.................
                  [​IMG]

                  Your Aristea looks magnificent! I used to have A.ecklonii which was free flowering in a good shade of blue, but not hardy enough for the winter of 2011/12..............
                  [​IMG]
                   
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                  • longk

                    longk Total Gardener

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                    As I say, be patient as they can take a year or two to settle in.
                     
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                    • PeterS

                      PeterS Total Gardener

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                      Thanks for the info LongK.

                      I am used to waiting. I sowed some Asphodelius seed in 2007 - it has just started to bloom for the first time. That's 7 years -:snooze:
                       
                    • longk

                      longk Total Gardener

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                      Jeepers - I have Asphodeline albus in their second year. Just five more to wait then:huh:
                       
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