who ever she may be”.. is what I have named one of the planters at the entrance to the woodland garden, which could really apply to the whole garden. This little dwarf iris has an otherworldly grey/blue sheen which changes with the light and is set off dramatically by the aqua and turquoise tones in the Glazed stoneware pots we are using throughout the display garden. A nice reminder that the word ‘Iris’ means ‘rainbow’, not ‘purple’.
Last winter at Petersham Nursery in Richmond I first saw this little gem peeking up in a back greenhouse and wrote it down on my ‘Very Intriguing-Must Locate’ list. And this spring I found it being grown by vendors in the Pacific Northwest. It went directly into the planting plan for the display garden (we are building it now!) and because the blooms timed perfectly, ended up being quite prominent despite its subtlety.
If it is named for the author, who writes on memory, culture, madness and dreams, that would be quite apt and interesting..
IRIDACEAE, The Iris Family
Iris histrioides ‘Katherine Hodgekin’