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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Dig In: Garden Checklist
For week of March 19:
Spring will start a bit soggy, but there’s still plenty to do between showers:
* Fertilize roses, annual flowers and berries as spring growth begins to appear.
* Watch out for aphids. Wash off plants with strong blast from the hose.
* Pull weeds now! Don’t let them get started. Take a hoe and whack them as soon as they sprout.
* Prepare summer vegetable beds. Spade in compost and other amendments.
* Prune and fertilize spring-flowering shrubs after bloom.
* Feed camellias at the end of their bloom cycle. Pick up browned and fallen flowers to fight blossom blight.
* Feed citrus trees as they start to blossom.
* Cut back and fertilize perennial herbs to encourage new growth.
* Seed and renovate the lawn (if you still have one). Feed cool-season grasses such as bent, blue, rye and fescue with a slow-release fertilizer. Check the irrigation system and perform maintenance. Make sure sprinkler heads are turned toward the lawn, not the sidewalk.
* In the vegetable garden, transplant lettuce and kale.
* Seed chard and beets directly into the ground.
* Plant summer bulbs, including gladiolus, tuberous begonias and callas. Also plant dahlia tubers.
* Shop for perennials. Many varieties are available in local nurseries and at plant events. They can be transplanted now while the weather remains relatively cool.
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