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Tall Bearded Iris 'Dusky Challenger'
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(What's my zone?)Perennial
Cultivar Notes - 'Dusky Challenger'
Enormous, silky, rich dark purple blooms with violet-black beards. One of the finest dark irises available today; impeccable ruffled form. Very tall, well-branched stalks with 8-10 buds. Blooms in late spring to early summer.
Genus Notes - Iris
The ancient Greeks named Iris in reference to their lively goddess who personifies the rainbow. By similarity, the plant is perhaps best known for its amazing range of colors. Shades and tints are so numerous it is difficult for botanists to accurately differentiate individual hues. Irises are botanically allied with Orchids, Pineapples, Amaryllis, Gingers, and Lilies; the varied collection descended from the same unknown, primeval stock from the beginning of time.
In the Middle Ages, Irises were highly valued for their medicinal benefits and perfumery; these fine "Orrisroots" were said to impart a rich, sweet, violet-like fragrance that relieved innumerable ills. Even today, these garden favorites are prized for their many-colored displays and scents. Different varieties produce a range from grape juice to celery, orange bloom to lily-of-the-valley, and gardenia to anise.
Iris bloom in almost every color under the sun. Their flowers are shapely and elegant, their foliage long and narrow.
Species Notes - Iris germanica
Tall bearded Iris are wonderful spring blooming perennials with huge colorful flowers. Plants prefer slightly alkaline soil. Plant rhizomes near the soil surface. Planting too deep may cause rhizomes to rot. Very drought tolerant.