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Russian Iris Ensata: Number 11 in a Garden Photo Series

Updated on June 17, 2013
Is it Russian iris?  Iris ensata? Flag iris? Or Japanese iris?
Is it Russian iris? Iris ensata? Flag iris? Or Japanese iris? | Source

Russian Iris Thrives In America!

We should clear up any confusion right away. Russian iris in the USA goes by several names--flag iris, Japanese iris, and iris ensata. No matter the name, though, it is a perennial to love. Taking a look at this photo montage will explain why.

How Is Russian Iris Different Than The Iris Our Grandmothers Grew In Their Gardens?

The Russian iris, like its traditional cousins, is an easy to care for perinneal. Shallow plantings for the rhizomes in an area that will provide plenty of sunshine and good drainage, with a little more watering than its relatives does the job since they don’t ask for much. What they give in return, however, is neighbor-stopping beauty.

They shine throughout the spring and summer in front of a dark house or a shadowy shade garden because the foliage is light. You can see that mine is a striped leaved masterpiece. As you study different varieties you will find that the foliage varies in shades of green to white.

The blade-shaped leaves generally grow only 1-2” wide but their stance is salute form. The flowers pop up like soldiers at attention, standing tall in the sun. These seem to bloom suddenly so you have to pay attention if you want to see them unfurl, sort of like the small town you miss if you blink when traveling.

A couple of years ago I purchased one little plant and got it in the ground just before life took another unexpected turn. Each year I just hoped it would make it through the winter, as with many of my other plants during that time.

Indeed it did make it, and I was delighted to find out how well it multiplied itself as it waited so patiently for some attention. Now I have them in two spots! I hope you enjoy my Russian Iris photographs.

Photo Montage for Russian Iris:

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Russian Iris With BudSoaking Up The SunShadowed FoliageRegal Russian Iris BudsWhich Iris Will Be The First To Unfurl?Ruffles GaloreDancing In The WIndBlooming TogetherStunning DetailsA Serene, Tranquil IrisSouthern Sun And Sky Show Off Russian IrisVariegated Hosta Make Beautiful Companion Plants for Russian IrisBreezy IrisRuffled, Yet Unruffled :)Exquisite DetailsImmature Bloom--So DelicateDemure Bud Waiting Its TurnIntricacy Defined!Sun Filtering Through PetalsRain Drenched, Wind Whipped, Still Standing Strong
Russian Iris With Bud
Russian Iris With Bud | Source
Soaking Up The Sun
Soaking Up The Sun | Source
Shadowed Foliage
Shadowed Foliage | Source
Regal Russian Iris Buds
Regal Russian Iris Buds | Source
Which Iris Will Be The First To Unfurl?
Which Iris Will Be The First To Unfurl? | Source
Ruffles Galore
Ruffles Galore | Source
Dancing In The WInd
Dancing In The WInd | Source
Blooming Together
Blooming Together | Source
Stunning Details
Stunning Details | Source
A Serene, Tranquil Iris
A Serene, Tranquil Iris | Source
Southern Sun And Sky Show Off Russian Iris
Southern Sun And Sky Show Off Russian Iris | Source
Variegated Hosta Make Beautiful Companion Plants for Russian Iris
Variegated Hosta Make Beautiful Companion Plants for Russian Iris | Source
Breezy Iris
Breezy Iris | Source
Ruffled, Yet Unruffled :)
Ruffled, Yet Unruffled :) | Source
Exquisite Details
Exquisite Details | Source
Immature Bloom--So Delicate
Immature Bloom--So Delicate | Source
Demure Bud Waiting Its Turn
Demure Bud Waiting Its Turn | Source
Intricacy Defined!
Intricacy Defined! | Source
Sun Filtering Through Petals
Sun Filtering Through Petals | Source
Rain Drenched, Wind Whipped, Still Standing Strong
Rain Drenched, Wind Whipped, Still Standing Strong | Source

Garden Hubs for You:

Interested in more iris hubs and other garden hubs?

Black Iris Photos with Growing Tips

• Five Floral Arrangements You Can Make

• A Patriotic Planter for Your Garden

• A Planter for Tea Leaves

Number 1 and Number 7 in a Garden Photo Series

White Flowers to Love

Iris Ensata = Beautiful Plant
Iris Ensata = Beautiful Plant | Source

Other Russian Iris Photos For You To Enjoy

The following links will give you a better idea of the varieties of beautiful flowers that are available from the Russian iris family:

Iris Ensata

Japanese Water Iris

Light at Dawn Ensata

Japanese Jocasta

Russian Iris

Flashing Koi Japanese Iris

Iris Blooms for You!

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  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey

    Peggy W:

    It's such fun to be able to share plants that multiply like iris! Thanks for taking a look at this hub--I enjoyed yours again! You've got some great videos on it.

    My plants have matured so much over the last couple of years that I've got to completely rethink some of the bedding areas. You've got me thinking about what would happen if I mixed some black iris with my other iris and let them grow together for a few years. :)

  • Peggy W profile image

    Peggy Woods 

    6 years ago from Houston, Texas

    The type of iris featured in this hub is the type I grew up in Wisconsin from ones thinned out from my grandmother's garden. Here in Houston we have better luck growing the Louisiana Iris & they are featured in a hub I wrote with photos of them. They like their feet wet and with our humid climate with our normal amounts of rainfall, they thrive here. Years ago I purchased 5 different colors at a Bulb Mart and I must have given away hundreds of them from those original 5 in subsequent years.

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey


    You are so right about these flowers and their foliage. Pretty, yes, but iris have a royal quality about them, don't they? So appreciate your that you joined this discussion--thanks!

  • 2uesday profile image


    6 years ago

    I too love the iris flowers in my garden. I like the ones with variegated leaves best, similar to the ones in your photos. I think the iris plants of this type are very majestic plants as they hold their heads (blooms) high. The variegated leaves are a bonus as they add a nice touch with their distinctive color to the flower border.

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey


    They really are a delightful flower to have--I hope you get to showcase them in your garden again very soon! Thank you very much for taking a look at these photos and adding your input to this discussion.

  • thougtforce profile image

    Christina Lornemark 

    6 years ago from Sweden

    Everyone must be thrilled to have a Russian Iris in the garden! Such beautiful flower, almost unreal in its fantastic form! I had Iris in my former garden and I miss them very much. Thanks for reminding me of one of my favorites, they will definitely have a place in my garden where I live now. The photos are wonderful. Voted up, beautiful!


  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey

    Vinaya Ghimire:

    Thanks kindly--I hope you have good success with your Russian iris! They have bee a delight in our garden. Appreciate that you came by to take a look at these flowers.

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey


    Thanks very much! Iris are a fun photographic subject. I have not always been a gardener, quite incompetent for a long time, but it happened so don't give up. You may yet take up this hobby--it may just not be your time yet! Thanks for coming by to see these Russian iris. You might like to see my black iris hub sometime.

  • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

    Vinaya Ghimire 

    6 years ago from Nepal

    These pictures are great! As a gardener, I want to grow Russian Iris, which I have never grown until now.

  • Ardie profile image


    6 years ago from Neverland

    Your photos are beautiful! I wish I could garden better - but sadly I just kill anything I come into contact with. It makes me so sad that I've given up on any gardening :) Great Hub

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey

    Kaili Bisson:

    Glad you enjoyed these iris photos! Thanks much for coming by, and for following my work.

  • Kaili Bisson profile image

    Kaili Bisson 

    6 years ago from Canada

    These photos are a delight. Glad to meet a fellow gardener :-)

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey


    The Russian iris have been delightful to have in my garden because they are stand outs among the traditional iris. I'm considering making a unique iris bed and if it works out I'll be able to show it off in a hub next summer.

    Thanks very much for checking this hub out and letting me hear from you. I viewed some of your beautiful photos yesterday so your compliment means a great deal.

  • suzettenaples profile image

    Suzette Walker 

    6 years ago from Taos, NM

    Your Russian Irises are absolutely beautiful as are the photos of them. You are quite talented both as a green thumb and as a photographer. You knowledge of flowers is amazing also. Thank you so much for an interesting and knowledgeable hub. I love flowers also - and photography - so I really enjoyed this hub.

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey

    Movie Master:

    Thank you for your visit to this hub and for your encouraging comments. Glad you are enjoying the photo series. I plan to add some new photos to the Iris, Lovely Iris hub later tonight.

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey


    Thanks for letting me know that this Russian iris hub had new information for you! So glad you enjoyed the photos. They were fun to work with and get posted. So appreciate your visit!

  • Movie Master profile image

    Movie Master 

    6 years ago from United Kingdom

    This russian iris is a real beauty! what a wonderful colour.

    Fabulous photos, your iris series is an absolute delight, thank you and voted up

  • picklesandrufus profile image


    6 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

    Did no know any of the information I learned in this hub. Thanks for writing it.Loved the pictures too!

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey

    Om Paramapoonya :

    Thanks kindly for letting me know how much you enjoyed these photos. I think the purples of iris are heartening, and this Russian iris' color speaks of a tender strength.

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey

    Thank you, BlossomSB. I'm glad you enjoyed see this Russian iris hub and that it's flower photos reminded you of your mom!

  • Om Paramapoonya profile image

    Om Paramapoonya 

    6 years ago

    So gorgeous! That lovely purple shade can really brighten up a gloomy day. I enjoyed all the photos and videos. Thanks for sharing, RTalloni.

  • BlossomSB profile image

    Bronwen Scott-Branagan 

    6 years ago from Victoria, Australia

    Lovely photos. My mother used to grow many different types of iris, mine aren't as good, but I still love this delicate, colourful flower. voted up.

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey


    Thanks so much! I'm glad they remind you of your mom and her love of flowers. So appreciate that you stopped in and let me hear from you. :)

  • teaches12345 profile image

    Dianna Mendez 

    6 years ago

    Beautiful iris photos and they remind me of my mother. This was one of her favorite garden flowers. Thanks for the memory and the lovely photos.

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey


    I'm so glad you enjoyed these photos. Thank you for coming by and letting me hear from you! Florida grows some beautiful flowering plants that we can't enjoy here and I miss them, but it the flowers we do have are amazing. Come for tea and I'll cut you a bouquet!

  • mary615 profile image

    Mary Hyatt 

    6 years ago from Florida

    We don't grow Iris in S. Fl. and I miss them. These are very beautiful. I love to garden, and I would love to have these. In the meantime, I can just look at your beauties!

  • RTalloni profile imageAUTHOR


    6 years ago from the short journey


    Glad you enjoyed these Russian iris photos. Sorry, though, that you've not been able to enjoy the plants in your garden. They are so easy to grow that I think there is probably a simple problem you need to solve. Take a look at my other iris hubs, do a little more reading on planting and growing iris if necessary, and do try again. They are very forgiving plants to grow with a minimum amount of care--just one more reason to love them!

  • billybuc profile image

    Bill Holland 

    6 years ago from Olympia, WA

    Beautiful photos. I have had zero luck growing irises but this might inspire me to try once again. Great hub!


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