Maroon & Orange Iris

Maroon and Orange Iris // Photo: Cheryl SpeltsYes, it’s another post about an iris. And yes, it’s another post with yet another purple-y and orange iris. But this one is different… this one is more maroon! And I think it may be the prettiest one yet.

So why am I still discovering new irises in the yard, after living here for almost two years?

Here’s my theory! Bulbs use all their stored up energy to bloom, and once the bloom fades, then they start to store up energy for the next spring. So if you chop back the leaves of a bulb too soon, it won’t have time to store up enough energy for the next year, and may never bloom again. This house sat empty for three or four months, before I moved here in the summer of 2010 – so my gut feeling is that these irises last bloomed that spring, when there was no one here to water them, and then the heat of early summer caused them to die back too soon. So they were too exhausted to bloom in the spring of 2011. But this spring? They’ve had over a year of regular watering, and they’re in good fertile ground, so they decided to go for it this year!

And here’s a little photography note for my non-photographer friends, who want to take better photos of the flowers in their own gardens… If you look at the images of Ugly Iris I blogged two weeks ago, and compare them to these images, you can see the difference a little sun makes. The Ugly Iris images were shot at the very end of the day at about 6:00PM, with some golden light coming from the west, as the sun set. Not a whole lot of sun – but some gorgeous golden glow from that side of the sky. And these images today were shot earlier – about 4:30PM – but it was cloudy and not quite raining, but it’s been kind of misting all day, on and off. I love the golden glow of the Ugly Iris images, but I also love the really saturated colors you can get on a cloudy day! Point is, you don’t have to shoot flowers when the sun is high in the sky – in fact, you will likely get more interesting images if you shoot when the light is more interesting!

So are there any other secret flowers about to bloom in my yard? I don’t know, but I hope so!

Maroon & Orange Iris // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

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