|Bearded Iris in my Port Washington, NY garden|
The Siberian and Japanese Iris do not have the fuzzy beard and hence, are considered beardless. Most of the beardless irises are native to Asia.
Siberian Irises form beautiful clumps of grass-like foliage (much thinner than the fan-like foliage of the Bearded Iris) with blooms rising on slender stems. The flowers are smaller and more delicate than the bearded type, in shades of blue, purple, red-violet or yellow. Once the flower fades, the foliage remains a beautiful focal point in the garden, often resembling an ornamental grass.
|Photo of Siberian Iris |
from Delaware Valley Iris Society
Japanese Iris have huge, flat flowers with ruffled petals. Here, the falls are large and the standards are short. Their leaves are sword shaped with a distinct rib that runs lengthwise down the leaves - a good way to distinguish this type from the others when not in flower. Absolutely gorgeous in a mass planting.
|Photo from UMASS Amherst Extension|
In Greek Mythology, Iris is the Goddess of the Rainbow and because of the elegance of the bloom, it has been the symbol of royal families throughout history. The most famous use of the Iris as a symbol came from France, when it was adapted on royal banners as the "fleur-de-lis"(possibly adapted from Iris Pseudacorus)