It's hot here, 27 degrees Celsius at the present time, more like mid June than April and according to the i phone this weather is set to continue until next Wednesday. Although very welcome this sudden burst of summer weather has caught me unaware, I still have not got round to having a good old waxing session and my winter Wellington clad feet are crying out for a pedicure. I desperately need to buy some sensible summer shoes for loafing around the garden in, my previous summer shoes all look a bit gone on and I can't really totter round the garden in high heels or towering wedges. Must pick up a few pairs of espadrilles on my next trip into town, I really was not expecting to buy them so soon!
This balmy weather has sent the growth rate of the flora into overdrive, as I type, I can hear the hums and whirrs or mowers and strimmers in the distance, our lawn desperately needs another cut. The Crocus are now a distant memory and the Daffodils are on their way out, Wisteria and Lilac are now blooming and Tulips and Irises are raising their heads.
I always think of the Iris as the true national flower of France, The Fleur de Lis was not a lilly but a yellow Iris which grew along the banks of the River Lis, it was during the Middle Ages that the Fleur de Lis started to become linked to the French Monarchy. I once read somewhere the French traditionally plant Irises along either side of the entrance or main doorways of their property to ward of evil and invite good luck and it is certainly true in this part of France where you often see stunning Irises growing on each side of entrance gates.
The Iris symbolises good news and luck. It is also said its three upright petals symbolize faith, valour, and wisdom.
The iris got its name from the Greek goddess of the rainbow, Iris. She was the messenger of the gods, and would ride on the rainbow to and from Earth in her beautiful, multicoloured robes. She acted as the link between heaven and earth. It is told that irises were planted at the graves of women. People believed that this would summon the goddess to guide the souls in their journey to heaven.
Here in the Pyrenees there are a few native varieties that grow naturally in the wild, conditions are perfect for them. According to one of our neighbours these one's pictured from our garden are a local variety. They are ethereal and beautiful and I could not resist cutting a few for the house, indoors and outdoors they make me smile whenever I walk past.