The Compost Iris

This particular Iris has a surprising story. I originally planted 50 of these Iris. The succeeding summer, after they were dormant, I'd accidentally dug up one. The bulb was tiny, and it was hot that day, and I didn't want to replant it, so I tossed the bulb in the compost. When I went to harvest compost a few months later, the bulb was still there, uncomposted. Back in the compost. Next harvest, the bulb was still there. Back in the compost. Now it's a year after I originally dug it up. Next compost harvest, it escaped my screening process, and I found it when I was sprinkling compost around my roses. The bulb had a tiny green tip. It was trying to grow!

When I saw that green tip, there was no tossing it back into the compost bin. I planted it. I didn't expect it to survive because it was summer and the wrong time of year to plant bulb iris, but I thought it deserved its chance. It managed to grow a single small leaf that summer. It didn't bloom, but it wasn't in the way of anything, so I left it.

The next spring, a flower! Now a couple of years later...four plants and four flowers! I smile now whenever I see this iris. We've been on a journey together, me and this little bulb. It really wanted to live and prosper, and somehow, despite me--or because of me--it did.

You see, the 49 other bulbs of this Iris I had planted all died. The area where I planted them all was so very dry, they didn't survive. But that little one, determined to live, did. You never know what will happen in life, do you?

Compost Iris

And nearby is 'Tamora'.
Rosa 'Tamora'

Felco Classic Manual Hand Pruner #F-2

Corona Clipper AC 8300 Sharpening Tool


  1. Isn't it amazing! I have bulbs in my compost heap too. They bloom now when they never had before. I need to dig them up this year and give thim a nice new spot.

    Love tamora!


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