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Herb of the week

By Lynn Kirkland
Florentine iris

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Herb of the Week for Herb of the week for 12th October
By Lynn Kirkland

It is always a pleasure to return to New Zealand with a renewed appreciation of what a wonderful country we live in.
I have just spent two weeks in Italy and two weeks in England where the gardens were moving into autumnal mode.
As I walked around the herb farm gardens on my return this week with blossom trees and forget-me-nots and the soft greens of new leaves adorning the gardens, it took a moment to realise that here in New Zealand it is springtime.
The Florentine irises are just at the end of their flowering time and this is the herb that is symbolic of Florence where it is grown for the production of orris root used as a fixative for the perfumery industry.
The rhizome must be at least two years old before it is dried and the wonderful violet scent develops a year later.
Pot pourri does not seem as popular as it once was but the fixative of choice for makers of this collection of herbs and fragrant flowers and leaves is orris root powder.
This special variety of iris, the Florentine iris, has pale blue flowers or like the one in the photo white blooms and is relatively easy to grow and is a beautiful herb to graze your garden even if you do not want to go the lengths of making your own orris root from the rhizome.

Thanks lynn another great read.

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Weekly Herb Notes

Aug 4 Cowslips, primulas and primroses

Aug 12 Thyme's

Aug 25 Alexanders

Sept 1 Woodland Magic

Sept 8th Pretty Periwinkle

Sept 15th A bath of Herbs

Sept 22nd Florentine Iris

Oct 1th St Francis

Oct 6th The Witching Herb

Oct 20th Summer sunflowers

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March 16 Garden of Tranquillity

March 23 Sunny Flower

March 30 Red Puppy Appeal

April 6 Lets hear it for Carob

April 12 Autumn Harvest

April 20 Back to Childhood

April 27 Plant Protection

May 4th 2007 Sensational Saffron

May11 2007 Floral Message of Love

May 18 2007 Lovely Lemon Verbena

June 8th Hello the Aloe

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Aug 17 Eucalyptus

Aug 24 Lemon Balm

Aug 31 Fathers Day

Sep 7 Witch Hazel

Sept 14 Hearsease

Sept 21Springtime

Sept 28 St Francis

Oct 5 Calendula Uses

Oct 12 Florentine iris

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