See hundreds of irises in bloom; take some home, too
This beauty is a Tennessee Gentleman iris, purchased several years ago at the
Sacramento Iris Show. See many varieties at the show and sale this weekend.
(Photo: Debbie Arrington)
One of Sacramento’s favorite spring flowers gets its turn in the spotlight this weekend when the Sacramento Iris Society hosts its annual show and sale.
Shepard Garden and Arts Center in McKinley Park will be overflowing with bearded irises and other species in their colorful glory. With the theme “National Parks,” the iris show will be open to the public from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 23, and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, April 24.
This will be a judged show with many different varieties and kinds of irises vying for awards. It’s a great opportunity to learn about the many different color combinations and how to better identify varieties.
Take some home, too! The club will offer potted irises for sale with plants ready to transplant now.
Bearded iris, the most common perennial iris, is a water-wise wonder that thrives in Sacramento. After showy spring blooms, bearded irises need little summer irrigation – just once a week or twice a month. The plant dies back in August before sprouting new growth in late fall or winter.
Originally hybridized in Germany, bearded irises (also known as flags) now include more than 60,000 named cultivars and come in every color from pure white to black with countless shades in between. The most common colors are blues and purples, closest to the iris family’s native hues.
Admission and parking are free. Shepard Center is located at 3330 McKinley Blvd., Sacramento.
Details and directions: www.sgaac.org or https://sacramentoirissocietydotcom.wordpress.com/ .
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For week of Dec. 3:
Make the most of gaps between raindrops. This is a busy month!
* Windy conditions brought down a lot of leaves. Make sure to rake them away from storm drains.
* Use those leaves as mulch around frost-tender shrubs and new transplants.
* Rake and remove dead leaves and stems from dormant perennials.
* Just because it rained doesn't mean every plant got watered. Give a drink to plants that the rain didn't reach, such as under eves or under evergreen trees. Also, well-watered plants hold up better to frost than thirsty plants.
* Prune non-flowering trees and shrubs while they're dormant.
* Clean and sharpen garden tools before storing for the winter.
* Brighten the holidays with winter bloomers such as poinsettias, amaryllis, calendulas, Iceland poppies, pansies and primroses.
* Keep poinsettias in a sunny, warm location. Water thoroughly. After the holidays, feed your plants monthly so they'll bloom again next December.
* Plant one last round of spring bulbs including daffodils, crocuses, hyacinths, anemones and scillas. Get those tulips out of the refrigerator and into the ground.
* This is also a good time to seed wildflowers such as California poppies.
* Plant such spring bloomers as sweet pea, sweet alyssum and bachelor buttons.
* Late fall is the best time to plant most trees and shrubs. This gives them plenty of time for root development before spring growth. They also benefit from fall and winter rains.
* Lettuce, cabbage and broccoli also can be planted now.
* Plant garlic and onions.
* Bare-root season begins. Plant bare-root berries, kiwifruit, grapes, artichokes, horseradish and rhubarb. Beware of soggy soil. It can rot bare-root plants.
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