Two companions have led me astray this week as I swore off blogging so I could work on restoring my gardens. One is this startling white iris, which I’ve waited three years to bring again to bloom. The other is the red-tailed hawk that streaks across the treetops, shrieking on the wing. It perches in one of my tall white pines where it can espy the neighbor’s chickens. The epithet “chicken hawk” suits this bird. It makes me feel like a co-conspirator. May it spread its barbaric yawp over the roofs of the world!
The white iris came originally from Milt Lord, who died this winter at age 84. Milt was an ardent canoeist, conservationist, champion of wild rivers, and true mensch — one of the village’s animating spirits. Milt gave an iris corm to Linda, who grew it in front of her shop. She gave a corm to me. I propagated it, then neglected it, and now it’s come back from the brink of oblivion. So may it be for the rest of the gardens.