From a photograph by Solomon D. Butcher of four daughters of rancher Joseph M. Chrisman, at their sod house in Custer County, Nebraska. From left to right, Harriet, Elizabeth, Lucie, and Ruth. Photographed in 1886.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Dividing Iris

More About Trees and Plants...



My iris here in Kentucky have nearly finished blooming. We are a couple of growing zones warmer and earlier than northern Nebraska where I remember iris blooming for Memorial Day.

I want to dig up and divide two big beds of iris this year. I need to thin them out. Each plant will probably yield several starts, and I'm not going to replant them all. I'll be giving them away to someone who doesn't even know yet about their good luck. Ha! I don't know yet who this person will be, but I will find her (or him.)

Iris can make a person very generous because they quickly crowd a bed. Many of my iris are descended from a bed I helped an elderly lady dig up and divide about ten years ago. She was so anxious to get rid of them that she had put an ad in the paper saying, "Free iris. You dig." Since then, I've divided them several times and given away many dozens of starts.

On a somewhat related topic...

I was thinking today about a beautiful place I once visited. I think of this place quite often and wish I could see it again -- a high valley in the Wyoming mountains in early June. The snow had melted, and the ground was covered with an inch or more of water. Blue flags, a wild American iris, were blooming as far as the eye could see.

I was 19 years old then and I had gone with my boyfriend and his dad to one of the high summer pastures that they leased from the government. The only thing that I remember well about that day is the blue flags.

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CONTENTMENT: Keep your heart free from hate, your mind from worry, live simply, expect little, give much, sing often, pray always, forget self, think of others and their feelings, fill your heart with love, scatter sunshine. These are the tried links in the golden chain of contentment.
(Author unknown)

IT IS STILL BEST to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasure; and to be cheerful and have courage when things go wrong.
(Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1867-1957)

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