RE:OT-BIO Melissa Harris
Hello to Iris-L.
My name is Melissa Harris. I am rather new to the email world and to the
In attempting to learn about my new interests, I am somewhat embarrassed to
admit that I had become a dedicated lurker. I felt that it was way past
time to come forward and introduce myself to the list.
I have been a member of the California Horticultural Society since I was 16
years old. My interests have been mainly California native plants until
recently, when I became interested in irises. I guess that the first
species that caught my eye were the Pacific Coast Hybrids, when I saw
several varieties in bloom a couple of years ago. This summer, I went to my
first Iris Show, in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa ("The Iris City") and picked up some
information on sources. Driving back from Iowa, I was able to stop at
Long's Iris Gardens in Boulder, Colorado and saw the gardens in bloom. That
was pretty much all it took to become (as my husband says) "Iris Crazy".
So now, I have joined my local club, planted a couple of beds of iris and
am attempting to start some native species by seed. I hope to acquire more
of the older historic varieties and have some interest in hybridizing. I
find that the flowers that interest me aesthetically are the darker blooms
and those varieties that combine complimentary colors. (Something that is
quite available in irises, unlike many other flowers.)
In Vallejo, where I live, Sunset rates us as Zone 17. (However, we are
warmer in the summer and colder in the winter than San Francisco, which
Sunset also rates as 17..) The soil is somewhat clay, but is responding
well to my addition of compost and there is an abundant society of
earthworms. This is a good climate for growing a variety of plants.
I have enjoyed the posts that I have read and am looking forward to asking
a few questions of my own. I also look forward to visiting other gardens in
bloom in the spring.
Vallejo, California - Sunset Zone 17 (??) With an edge.