Siberian Irises Pocket Journal

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Siberian Iris

There are about 1,800 species in the Iris family which includes crocuses, irises, and tiger flowers.  They are characterized by long, narrow swordlike leaves.  The roots are generally rhizomatous but a few species are bulbous.  They generally bloom from spring to early summer.  Irises are easily propagated by dividing or cutting the rhizomes in late summer or by separating the offsets from the bulbous types.

The Siberian Iris, pictured here, is a native of central Europe and Russia.  It is extremely hardy, easy to cultivate and  long-lived.  The flowers can be white, blue or purple, and are more delicate than bearded irises.  They can grow from 18-36” tall.

Historically, irises have been grown by the Greeks, the Romans, and the Egyptians.  The roots was valued for its medicinal qualities as well as in perfumes.  In ancient times, perfumes were used as offerings to the gods.  Iris root thrown on a fire gives off a very pleasant scent.

Today the iris is symbolic of higher inspiration and psychic purity.

artwork by Valerie Hayes
text by Anne Trawick

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