I look forward to the first bearded iris with great anticipation and the wait is longer than it need be here because I do not have any dwarf bearded, only a few Intermediates and the rest Tall Bearded. This is tough terrain for them because the soil is heavy and the garden slopes to the north but most are doing well and this, their third spring has seen most with more spikes than ever and healthy-looking clumps. It always amazes me how good they look by late May after spending all winter looking as happy as a parrot in a snowdrift. Well, Tuesday saw the first of them open and it is a very welcome hint of summer.
It is ‘Alpenview’ raised by Keith Keppel and introduced in 2002. It is a child of ‘Crowned Heads’ one of my all time favourites and it has very good manners with good growth, branches and lots of buds. And those flowers are beautifully shaped and have a nice scent too. It is not as wacky as some of the others I like but it is a good garden plant.