Sunday, June 8, 2008

Iris Blooming in the Shade Garden

Last year we bought a new hose reel, with an extension so the hose can be located at the side of the garden instead of against the house where we had to drag it around a corner and through the patio. It's much easier to access it now for both lawn and garden use, and it's one of those reels that rewinds the hose automatically, sparing us from having to hand-crank the reel, not my favorite task! We can get to the hose from either the lawn or the garden side. I moved a large hosta so we can walk through that narrow part of the garden to the hose. Since then, I've been keeping my eye out for some nice stepping stones - only two were needed. I couldn't find anything I liked. I found cutesy, and I found plain. I knew I'd know them when I saw them, I just wasn't seeing them. I thought about making my own, but still had my eye out for the perfect stepping stones every time I visited a garden center, big box, or anyplace that seemed likely to sell stepping stones or stepping stone kits.

A couple of weeks ago I found what I was looking for at work. We don't usually carry stepping stones. I didn't know where these beauties came from, how much they cost, or whether they were even for sale. I just knew I HAD to have them!

These pretty stepping stones were made by one of my co-workers. She's a stained-glass artist. Didn't she find a beautiful way to use her glass remnants?

I never thought I'd get Iris to bloom in my shade garden. Not only does Iris now bloom in my garden, it will even bloom in the snow. In fact, these Iris will bloom twelve months a year! I'm thrilled!

. . . and the helicopters continue to fall . . .


  1. Anonymous1:37 PM

    Hope you are holding up. Those are pretty stepping stones. I'm nuts about any stone work in the garden. All your rearranging and adding the new hose self reel will make life more productive too. Sounds like you are getting organized so you can get even busier;)

  2. Thank you Sheila.

    Anna, Yep, I'm fine. I worked about 5 hours yesterday, then came home and did some catching up here with laundry and such. Today I'm off. Dropping a day at the nursery and that should help prevent me from working seven days a week for a while. Being organized certainly does help!

  3. The stepping stones are just beautiful!
    I want some like this too!!!
    Well, I think it's to far away to have them over, it will be to expensive.

    Have a nice week my friend :)

  4. Anonymous6:44 PM

    I don't blame you! They are indeed beautiful! Almost hate to step on them!

  5. Those stepping stones are great! I've been reduced to making my own & they are nowhere near as nice looking as those.

  6. Wow, funny but we made some of our own stepping stones today. Nothing close to as beautiful as these, but we took pictures of all of the steps we took to amke them. I can't make the post tonight with Cheesehead sitting nearby since they're Father's Day gifts for him. I sure hope they turn out!

    I LOVE your irises, it is an excellent use of her stained glass remnants!

  7. What a lucky find. I love stepping stones in a garden and those are indeed beauties to be treasured..

  8. You found really nice stepping stones - the glass does give them a special touch. Your coworker is so talented.

    BTW, our sun is so strong that the iris can bloom in part-shade here, Garden Girl!

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  9. Anonymous10:48 PM

    This is a pretty ornament for your shade garden.

  10. Marie, yes, I think shipping them would be very expensive. They're made of concrete and quite heavy.

    Brenda, they're pretty, but tough. I've stepped on them quite a few times already. I haven't needed the hose for some time though. We're in monsoon season here, with rain daily and flooding throughout the area.

    MMD, I was about at the point of making some, then I came across these. DH would like my co-worker to make more of them for us, and have me make a path through the garden to save some steps when he's working in the yard. He likes these too.

    Cinj, I'll be looking forward to checking out your stepping stones. Some of the best ones I've seen have been homemade.

    Joey, I'm glad you like 'em! I was concerned about how they'd weather the winter. My co-worker made some last year and left them outside with no problems.

    Annie, I love how the glass becomes sparkly and irridescent during the few hours of sunshine that area gets. I think my co-worker was creative to come up with this idea. I'd never have thought of stained-glass stepping stones.

    Lucky you growing iris in part sun! So far I've had no luck with even Siberian iris. They look very healthy, get nice and tall, but so far no blooms in one of the sunnier parts of the garden where they were planted three years ago. Humph!

    Titania, thank you. I'm glad you like them. Thanks for visiting!

  11. Those are indeed beautiful stepping stones. My irises have already stopped blooming; I would love to have some that lasted all year:)
    Hope the worst of the storms passed you by.

  12. I'm surprised your Siberian Irises don't bloom in shade. Mine bloom quite well in part to full shade.

  13. Gardengirl,

    What a talent gardener you are to get the Iris to bloom in shade! So clever!

    They are beautiful stepping stones and you will see them year round and smile....spring won't seem so far away.

  14. Which Iris did you get to bloom in shade - the Siberian? I might have to try that ... I just inherited a large patch of them.

  15. Rose, glad you like 'em! I'd love to have 'real' iris!

    We spent about 1/2 hour in the basement on Saturday, but fortunately we had no damage. We did hear the floor joists creaking though. Some neighboring suburbs had quite a bit of damage. We were lucky.

    MMD, I'm surprised too. I got Siberian Iris because I'd had good luck with them blooming in shady areas in the past. . . just not in this garden. Maybe next year. . .

    Gail, I might be seen out there in the dead of winter brushing the snow away so I can see them!

    Beth, Siberian Iris are supposed to bloom in the shade, or part sun at least. They have for me in previous gardens, and they do for Mr. McGregor's Daughter, but so far not here. Sometimes they take a couple of years to establish before they bloom, but it's already been 3 years here. Maybe the fourth year will be the charm!


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