Heritage Irises

Bearded, beautiful, and full of grace and style.

By Beth Botts

Photography by Rob Cardillo


Heritage Iris—stepping out.For the ancient Greeks, Iris was the goddess of the rainbow, who carried messages between earth and sky. It seemed obvious to identify her with the three-petaled flowers whose colors brightened European streambeds and meadows. The iris often is acclaimed as the stylized flower depicted in the fleur-de-lis, the symbol of French royalty since the 12th century. With its tall, slender leaves and elegantly formed flowers, it was a common motif in Art Nouveau.