Sunday, May 9, 2010

A Little Black Magic

Today was cloudy, cool with a soft but steady wind and, for the most part, quiet outside. A gardener's dream day to work in the yard. I'm suppose to be a "gentle gardener" for the next 8 weeks, per doctor's orders, to help heal an injured shoulder but it's so hard to ignore the call of the green thumb. What started out as only a short expansion to a corner in order to dig up a white salivia that was overgrown and crowding out other plants ended up being a 5 hour dig-o-rama complete with the digging up of several plants to relieve overcrowding. [Oh well, advil and icy hot patches here I come tonight.]
     It's always thrilling to find that plants have grown so well that they now need to be divided and you get a two (or more) for the price of one situation. Gardening is an expensive hobby, despite all the claims that it's a cheap hobby with everything being able to be grown from seed. I can only grow a few select plants from seed. Everything else comes store or nursery bought.
     Speaking of dividing, I have probably 100 bearded iris plants in the front and back gardens. All but 5 of these were gifts from friends. Well, mostly from one friend who had purchased a home with huge iris beds. Once a year she and hubby divide the overgrown beds and I (and others) are luckily on the receiving end. I knew I had two different types of purple irises from her but this past week discovered that wasn't true. There was another purple, a white and a yellow. [More about the yellow irises at a later date.] Anyway, as I was inspecting one bed I discovered a "new" purple iris. It's a deep purple, almost black. Don't know if the iris somehow got cross pollenated or if this one was there in the last two years but didn't bloom until after I had divided the bed this past fall. Sigh. That's one of the pluses to gardening. It's always a surprise what you find blooming the next time you walk along the beds. My only regret is that I should have photographed the bed before I began expanding it so that I could do a "before" and "after" comparison.

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