Iris Florentina with raindrops

The spring flowers in my rather exposed country garden are suffering from the cold, wet, windy weather so I am picking more than usual for cut-flower arrangements indoors.

fleur de lys 1

outside with raindrops

The rhizomes of Iris Florentina (now, apparently, properly called Iris Germanica florentina) are the source of “Orris Root”, once widely used in herbal medicine, but now chiefly used in the production of perfumes.

fleur de lys 2

newly picked, in the greenhouse

The flowers have their own delicate scent but the lily-of-the-valley are overpowering it out in the garden.

perfection 6 hours later, ready to be permanently captured in the dry, warm darkroom

All photographs copyright Lynne Revette Butler

4 thoughts on “Iris Florentina with raindrops

  1. I love the pictures on your site…especially the one on the top of the screen with beautiful landscape. I find it interesting that the Iris Germanica florentina was once used in herbal medicine, but now used in the production of perfumes. Do you know why there was this switch? Do you they still use the flower for medicine today?

    • Hi Maggie,
      I’m glad you like the pictures on my blog but the landscape photo at the top is a standard “wordpress theme” picture.
      I think that the Orris root has been used to make perfume for a long time, it’s just that the majority of people now use other types of medicine so this use has declined. The powder from the ground roots is available from various online sources as a “herbal remedy.”
      [please note that the URL link has been removed from perfume lady’s comment as it connects to a shopping site]

  2. Beautiful pictures. I have some blooming iris right now an orange one and a stunning purply-blue one. They were from my husband’s grandmother’s yard so they are very sentimental. Glad you are enjoying yours inside if the weather is not cooperating.

    • I have a dark purple iris (would probably be called “black” in a glossy sales catalogue) that came from a local cottage garden; the owner was an elderly lady who carried on gardening until a few months before she died aged about 84 and I think of her when it blooms. Growing on plants that came from your relatives gardens is a wonderful link with them and I have several from my mother’s various homes; those irises of yours must bring back lots of wonderful memories of your husband’s grandmother.

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