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Gardening Articles, Tips and How-tos - Dave's Garden

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Tropical Plants Houseplants Gardening Tips Winter Gardening

Thursday, February 14, 2008

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Worms! How they Romance (all the details, here!)
By Catherine Smith (doccat5)

Have you ever wondered how all those lovely worms you find in your garden produce more little worms? These fascinating creatures are both male and female (hermaphrodite). They have both eggs(ova) and spermatozoa, although they are not self-fertilizing. An act of copulation is necessary in order that the eggs may become fertile.

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Read more articles about:  soil and composting vermicomposting worms
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Growing African Violets for Foliage: Variegated African Violet Plants
By Jill M. Nicolaus (critterologist)

African Violets are usually grown for their flowers. But even the most carefully tended and fertilized African violet won't bloom constantly. Variegated foliage makes some varieties exciting even when they're out of bloom. Imagine leaves so lovely that blooms are a bonus...

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Read more articles about:  African violets houseplants
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Introduction to Garden Styles: So Many Choices!
By Toni Leland (tonileland)

When one thinks of a garden, the image that usually comes immediately to mind is one of artistically arranged flower beds, or rows of vegetables marching along a straight line. Indeed, our residential gardens are the most common style, but many other garden types flourish here in the United States and around the world. Many gardens are more than just floral displays, and exploring the following different types might give you some ideas for your own space.

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Read more articles about:  garden design and landscaping formal gardens Japanese gardens xeriscaping vegetable gardening cottage gardens
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Two People, One Garden, and No Plan - Can True Love Conquer All?
By Carrie Lamont (carrielamont)

I plant a tiny lilac tree, he mows it down. I plant a slightly larger lilac tree, and this time I mark it with an enormous metal stake that says "welcome to my garden". Well, golly, of course, he has to move the stake in order to mow that side of the yard, and so... well... he mows down the lilac tree again.

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Read more articles about:  ornamental trees and shrubs perennial flowers gardening tips roses lilacs

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

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The Story of Iris Part 5 – Historical Versus Modern
By Mitch Fitzgerald (MitchF)

At one time or another each gardener must make the choice. Will their main focus be the historical or the modern? This goes for style, colors, plants, and yes, even the iris they choose to fill their space with. This will be a short look into the case for both sides and a hope to give you a better idea of what you love and why.

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Read more articles about:  perennial flowers Irises heirloom plants

Monday, February 11, 2008

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Aroids of the imagination VII - Butterflies, Crimson Melons and Chains
By LariAnn Garner (LariAnn)

On Earth, genera and species of vining aroids abound. Some of them ascend to the heights of canopy trees in the rainforest, while others creep up rockfaces with leaves closely appressed to the rock. On Aroidia, one of the few vining plants is the Chain Vine, a plant with some of the most unusual leaves of any on the planet. However, the "Butterfly Palm" gives the Chain Vine significant competition in the unusual leaf department. . .

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Read more articles about:  tropicals aroids
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Co-Co-Coconuts!
By Shari Scott (Islandshari)

Now I ask you, what typifies the tropics more than a cold tropical drink served in a hollowed out coconut shell, with a little paper umbrella sticking out the top? But wait...there is so much more to this little brown nut. Please let me explain...

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Read more articles about:  tropicals coconuts cooking
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Watchdog 30 Stars - Garden Crossings
By Victor Carrano (victorgardener)

This is the first of a series of articles spotlighting Garden Watchdog's Watchdog 30 companies. Leading off is Garden Crossings of Zeeland, Michigan, an online nursery featuring new and unusual annuals, perennials, shrubs and clematis. Find out why this company is among the top five in the influential Dave's Garden list!

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Read more articles about:  mail order gardening

Sunday, February 10, 2008

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Lavender, the Versatile Herb
By Karen Jones (karri_sue)

Lavender is the most versatile herb I have used. At one time I had well over a dozen bushes. As it dries in my home, I enjoy the fragrance, as well as the comments from family and friends, "I love the way your house smells!"

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Read more articles about:  herbs cooking Lavandula

Saturday, February 9, 2008

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You Supply The Caption - Gardening Fun :)
By Dea O'Hopp (Dea)

On Saturdays, the Writer's Group would like to say thanks by presenting a "You Supply The Caption" photo. A gardening related photo will be presented, and you the Readers will provide humorous captions. The wit available on Dave's is some of the best around, so please join in the fun! This feature is not a "for compensation" article - just our way of saying Thanks for reading. Hope you enjoy...now let's hear some funny stuff!

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Read more articles about:  garden humor annual flowers poppies

Friday, February 8, 2008

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New Salad Greens for 2008 - Part III: Variety Greens
By Lois Tilton (LTilton)

A salad bowl filled with nothing but lettuce – even a variety of lettuces - is like a monochrome picture or a chorus without harmony. It's missing something. This article showcases some of the new introductions in greens that gardeners can plant in 2008 to add some spicy flavor accents to their salads, as well as some that stand particularly well in warmer weather when many kinds of greens turn bitter and harsh.

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Read more articles about:  vegetable gardening mail order gardening seed starting greens lettuce

Thursday, February 7, 2008

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Seed Starting 101: The Dreaded Damping Off (and How to Prevent It)
By Jill M. Nicolaus (critterologist)

You carefully sow seeds into perfectly moistened soil. You check them seven times a day until the first green sprout arches its way above the soil. Ooh, the excitement as tiny green leaves unfurl and seedlings grow taller. Then, suddenly, disaster! The bushels of tomatoes and bouquets of flowers dancing in your head have been wiped out in an instant by The Dreaded Damping-Off. What is it, and how can you prevent it?

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Read more articles about:  gardening tips seed starting diseases soil and composting damping off
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AAS 75th Anniversary Classics
By Paul Rodman (paulgrow)

To commemorate their 75th anniversary, All-America Selections has designated 5 of their past winners as CLASSICS. These selections have withstood the test of time. These plants will be grown at all of the AAS display gardens for public viewing; they are indeed the best of the best.

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Read more articles about:  annual flowers perennial flowers vegetable gardening All-America Selections

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

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The Story of Iris Part 4- What is in a name?
By Mitch Fitzgerald (MitchF)

What is your name worth? Who are you if people just started calling you John or Jane Doe? Would it change how you look? Would it change what you know? Would it change what you could do and your value in society? These are the hard questions we have to ask about named iris – what is it about their names that are so important and why do we even care?

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Read more articles about:  botany perennial flowers Irises

Monday, February 4, 2008

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Wildflower Meadow - Creating a Wildflower area if you have the space
By Dea O'Hopp (Dea)

The house we purchased on 4 acres a few years back, was built on a defunct sod farm. Needless to say, there was zero good dirt left - just hard compacted "clay-dough" as we called it. We amended for beds the first 2 years, but there was a very large portion that was too costly to amend in our style. After a lot of research, we found that a Wildflower Meadow might do the trick for some dazzle since they don't like highly nutritious soil. There's hard work in creating these meadows but oh, so worth it !!

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Read more articles about:  perennial flowers annual flowers North American native plants birds wildflowers meadows
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Aroids of the imagination VI - Fans, Waves and Swans
By LariAnn Garner (LariAnn)

Not all plants on Aroidia are strange or unfamiliar, as my imagination soon revealed to me. A number of plants were very reminiscent of real aroids on Earth. In fact, some of these plants are ones that may be the end results of my current hybrid research work. My journey of imagination continues with selected examples of these familiar, yet different, flora and the environments they thrive in.

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Read more articles about:  tropicals aroids Alocasia Anthurium

Saturday, February 2, 2008

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Green Roofs: Preserving the Future
By Toni Leland (tonileland)

I recently attended the Ohio State University Master Gardener Conference, and part of the program included a tour of Columbus gardens. Of all the interesting and informative things I experienced, one stands out: the Ohio AEP Rooftop Garden. You're probably picturing palm trees and picnic tables. So did I, but what a surprise and eye-opener this project turned out to be.

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Read more articles about:  conservation perennial flowers roof gardens green roofs
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Enjoy an Underwater garden, Right in Your Own Livingroom!!
By Lee Anne Stark (threegardeners)

Do you love having plants indoors but constantly forget, or do not have time to water them properly? This might be just what you need. Imagine, lush, tropical foliage that you never need to water!!

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Read more articles about:  houseplants gardening tips aquarium plants
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You Supply The Caption - Gardening Fun :)
By Dea O'Hopp (Dea)

On Saturdays, the Writer's Group would like to say thanks by presenting a "You Supply The Caption" photo. A gardening related photo will be presented, and you the Readers will provide humorous captions. The wit available on Dave's is some of the best around, so please join in the fun! This feature is not a "for compensation" article - just our way of saying Thanks for reading. Hope you enjoy...now let's hear some funny stuff!

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Read more articles about:  garden humor vegetable gardening squash

Friday, February 1, 2008

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The Squirrel in My Garden
By Cathy M Wallace (cathy4)

Once upon a time, there was a young squirrel. His Momma and Poppa told him to stay away from the people that lived in the house where their Pin Oak tree grew, but being a curious little fellow, he didn’t always listen.

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Read more articles about:  wildlife garden humor birds backyard habitats garden humor squirrels
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Growing Roses from A-Z (Part IV)
By Paul Rodman (paulgrow)

No matter what type of plants that you grow you have to take the good along with the bad. Certain insects are attracted to roses and to prevent significant damage you need to keep a close eye on your plants. I will give you an overview on the most common insects that attack roses and controls to alleviate them.

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Read more articles about:  roses pests insects Integrated Pest Management IPM

Thursday, January 31, 2008

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Don't Whine About Dandelions, Make Dandelion Wine!!
By Lee Anne Stark (threegardeners)

Or jelly, soup or a salad, or even a soft drink. The leaves are high in Vitamin C, Vitamin A and iron and contain more iron and calcium than spinach. The lowly dandelion has so many uses, I'm surprised it isn't grown as a vegetable!!

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Read more articles about:  invasives and weeds dandelions cooking recipes foraging

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

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The Story of Iris Part 3 –Tone, Growth, and Bloom
By Mitch Fitzgerald (MitchF)

The big three points we all look for in iris, if we know it or not, are the tone of the flower, how it grows – height and needs, and the bloom. I hope to give you some tools to look at the same things we have always looked at but more in-depth and through the eyes of a iris lover.

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Read more articles about:  perennial flowers Irises
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Why would anyone grow A Stinking Rose? For Garlic of Course!
By Darius Van d'Rhys (darius)

Garlic has been used throughout recorded history for both culinary and medicinal purposes. It has a characteristic pungent, spicy flavor that mellows and sweetens considerably with cooking. Due to its strong odor, garlic is often called “The Stinking Rose”.

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Read more articles about:  vegetable gardening onions and garlic cooking recipes

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

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Topiary: Art in Nature, Part 3~Gardens of Note
By Toni Leland (tonileland)

There is something serene and magical about a topiary garden. The strong structural lines of a maze or hedge, the fascinating perfection of globes and pyramids, and the whimsical nature of green and growing animals and objects take one's imagination to flight. A traveler could spend years visiting the magnificent topiary gardens scattered around the world, but would be unable to choose the best. They are all so fantastic! Here then, is a brief tour of some of the more famous garden "art galleries."

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Read more articles about:  garden design and landscaping pruning formal gardens public gardens topiaries
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New Salad Greens for 2008 - Part II: Lettuce
By Lois Tilton (LTilton)

Lettuce is the foundation of the salad bowl. Here are some of the new introductions and featured varieties of lettuce that seed companies are offering the gardener in 2008.

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Read more articles about:  vegetable gardening mail order gardening seed starting greens lettuce
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A Step Back In Time - The Tall Ships
By Shari Scott (Islandshari)

Have you ever noticed how often the conversation of gardeners will turn toward the far past? Who would ever have thought of eating an artichoke? How did someone come up with steeping tea leaves? How did fermenting grapes become the delicious wines we know today? These are typical of the types of thoughts so many gardeners have while just puttering around pulling weeds. I recently had the opportunity to step back in time, and enjoyed a day of exploring these thoughts and others concerning the courage and fortitude of our ancestors. Please let me explain…

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Read more articles about:  garden history ships sea commerce explorers

Monday, January 28, 2008

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All-America Selections® for 2008
By Paul Rodman (paulgrow)

Every year for the past 75 years, plant experts from across the country have gotten together to chose the best of the best vegetables and flowers. These choices are known as the All-America Selections®. Here's a look at the selections for 2008.

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Read more articles about:  annual flowers perennial flowers vegetable gardening All-America Selections Osteospermum eggplants

Sunday, January 27, 2008

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So Many Tomatoes, So Little Time
By Melody Rose (melody)

“Home grown tomatoes, home grown tomatoes. What would life be like without homegrown tomatoes. Only two things that money can't buy. That's true love and home grown tomatoes.” John Denver, 'Home Grown Tomatoes' (from a song written by Guy Clark)

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Read more articles about:  vegetable gardening heirloom plants tomatoes

Saturday, January 26, 2008

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Household Composting
By Tamara Galbraith (TexasTam)

Still have a pile of fat, post-holiday credit card bills languishing on the dining room table? Compost 'em.

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Read more articles about:  soil and composting gardening tips recycling coffee grounds microbes

Friday, January 25, 2008

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Growing Roses from A-Z (Part III)
By Paul Rodman (paulgrow)

Roses are heavy feeders, if you’re going to successfully grow roses you need to set up a regular fertilization program.

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Read more articles about:  roses fertilizers

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

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The Story of Iris Part 2 – How to pick your iris
By Mitch Fitzgerald (MitchF)

We have all been there. We have seen the millions and endless millions of online sites with their photos of all the iris. We have looked at them and tried to figure out which ones will be the best one for our garden, our soil, our area, and our color. We look at the names, breeders, and all the other information on those little tags and it gets overwhelming – but it does not have to.

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Read more articles about:  perennial flowers Irises
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Topiary: Art with Nature, Part 2~How To Do It Yourself
By Toni Leland (tonileland)

Still reeling from sticker shock over the price tag on that beautifully sculpted topiary creation in the garden center? Not to worry--simple indoor or outdoor topiaries can be yours for the price of a potted tree or shrub, a pair of pruning shears, some ribbon, a little courage, and a fair amount of patience.

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Read more articles about:  ornamental trees and shrubs pruning frugal gardening topiaries

Monday, January 21, 2008

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Hydrangeas…How and Where and What… Part III
By Paul Rodman (paulgrow)

In this final installment on hydrangeas I’ll. Explain how to propagate them as well as protect them from the cold winter weather. You’ll also learn how to preserve those beautiful blooms to use in arrangements.

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Read more articles about:  ornamental trees and shrubs pruning hydrangeas flower arranging
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Aroids of the imagination IV - Branching up to the heights
By LariAnn Garner (LariAnn)

The way plants grow is often affected by the climatic conditions under which they grow. For example, trees growing very high up on mountains will grow much smaller than the same species growing in the valleys. This turns out to be true on Aroidia as well, as certain species found in the northern latitudes can grow in forms different than those found nearer the equator. This knowledge helped to explain the double-decker branching structures I encountered in some extreme northern latitude species of Triklados. . .

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Read more articles about:  tropicals aroids Amorphophallus
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Formal Gardens - Not as Snooty as You Think :)
By Dea O'Hopp (Dea)

A formal garden…..oh, how great they looked in the books and gardening magazines. Yup, we’ll do that one day. So….we did! But we got way more than we bargained for and I mean that in all good ways!

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Read more articles about:  garden design and landscaping perennial flowers formal gardens raised bed gardens

Thursday, January 17, 2008

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Seed Starting 101: Setting up Light Shelves for Starting Plants from Seed Indoors, Without a Greenhouse
By Jill M. Nicolaus (critterologist)

Why start from seed? You might be tempted by the photos in the seed catalogs that fill your mailbox in January. You may want to grow wonderful heirloom vegetables that just aren’t available in your local garden centers. You could decide it’s more cost effective to start flats of plants from seed than to buy them outright. But I think the best reason to start plants from seed is that it’s just such fun! From seed to garden specimen is a magical process, and it’s enchanting to watch it unfold. Making this magic happen inside, however, requires LIGHT...

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Read more articles about:  gardening tips seed starting grow lights
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Bamboozling Bambi
By Victor Carrano (victorgardener)

I welcome deer to my home one night per year - just the flying kind, and only on my roof. The rest of the year is spent using myriad tricks and methods to convince the terrestrial variety to roam elsewhere. Deer can wreak havoc on your garden and wipe out an entire season of blooms in one morning. I will discuss my years long battle against them and will report which methods and products work best, and which are a waste of your time and money.

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Read more articles about:  wildlife backyard habitats pests deer deer-resistant plants

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

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Introduction to Tree Aloes, part 2: the branching tree aloes
By Geoff Stein (palmbob)

Tree aloes are some of the most magnificent of all the succulents and can be awesome and imposing landscape statements. Most of the branching tree aloes are exceptionally neat and tidy-looking plants and are some of the most useful and valuable plants for use in xeriscape landscapes throughout the arid, warmer climates of the world. The following article is a brief introduction to some of these aloes, including some cultivational information and photos to aid in helping identify these plants in the nursery as well as in botanical gardens and private landscapes.

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Read more articles about:  cactus and succulents xeriscaping Aloes tree aloes public gardens Huntington Gardens
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The Story of Iris Part 1
By Mitch Fitzgerald (MitchF)

Back in the days of ancient Greece they had a god, the very rainbow in deity, and the grand messenger of Zeus. Her name was Iris. She was faster than the fastest wind and able to travel from the depths of the underworld, to the sea, and to the dry places we live in. She was known for her color and her ability to be anywhere – something many gods could not do because of one problem or another.

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Read more articles about:  perennial flowers Irises folklore and legends

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