Blue Flag Iris Cross for Sunday

Blue Flag Iris Cross-8775

Sometimes life gives you crosses to bear and sometimes beautiful crosses! But, I much prefer the latter. Whether a serendipitous gift of sultry breeze and humid clime or divine providence, this Blue Flag Iris found while hiking the boardwalk of Florida’s amazing Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary is draped so perfectly into the shape of a lovely wild cross. I found it soothing somehow to see it there with its hues of purple and blue against the green ferns and vines of the wilderness. Something organized and recognizable presenting itself out of natural wild chaos.

Blue flag, Iris versicolor, is an emersed plant which grows from underground rhizomes and is found in swamps, marsh environments or along ponds or even ditches here in South Florida. I see them at my favourite places such as Corkscrew Swamp and the Wakodahatchee Wetlands in South Florida. Seven iris species are found in Florida but the Blue Flag is the only large iris which grows wild here. It is a most distinctive plant with petals which can range in color from a pale blue to deep purple. They are unmistakable when you see their colors standing out from a field of green and no photographer can resist framing one in their viewfinder. Always amazing and beautiful. I took just two pictures of this particular bloom, one horizontally oriented and one vertically…so I give you both here along with a close crop for better viewing. The last two images from Wakodahatchee and Corkscrew respectively and look more like you see them in the field than the wonderful drape of my Blue Iris Cross.

Blue Flag Iris Cross-8775


The greens and browns of the wetlands are sometimes punctuated by the pretty purple swamp iris.

Blue Flag Iris at Corkscrew Swamp-8777

Perhaps we are given peace through nature’s beauty in many surprising ways!

jalovell signature-green overlay


~ by Judy on September 24, 2016.

11 Responses to “Blue Flag Iris Cross for Sunday”

  1. What beautiful photos, Judy. We have iris, too — although we don’t have this one. Ours looks much the same, though; it’s called the Southern blue flag, or Iris virginica. I just found out that ‘flag’ as a name for the flower comes from Middle English ‘flagge’: rush, or reed. That explains that!

    Despite the differences, this is a gorgeous plant, and it is a wonderful gift for Sunday. Is this from your archives, or is it a recent photo? I’m asking because ours bloom only in spring — but there’s no telling what goes on over there in Florida! What really surprised me is that last photo, with the great variety of other plants around the iris. Are those ferns I see?

    I think these wild plants are much more attractive than the hybrid, garden varieties. What I especially enjoy is just coming across them — exactly the point you made!

    • Yes, your guess is correct! The image is one from March 4th of 2015 so an early Spring image really. I hadn’t forgotten I had it, just needed a reason to go back to it. Your information on ‘flag’ is great since I meant to look it up too. Fire flag or alligator flag is another aquatic plant I have photographed…a yummy treat for Purple Gallinules. And flag as rush or reed makes perfect sense.

      The last image with all the ferns and vines with the Blue Flag Iris does indeed have at least three types of ferns in it. While I did not look them up yet ( and I should know them…my bad) there is a frond of a leather fern laying in the scene.

      It is definitely fun to find such beautiful flowers in wild, untamed and undisciplined areas other than a cultivated garden.

  2. Such beautiful images, Judy. Thank you for sharing.

    • Glad you enjoyed them and it is certainly my pleasure. Might have been overkill to show three of the same flower but anything worth doing is worth over doing….so they say!! 🙂

  3. The iris is one of my favourite flowers. But the only variety that grows locally is the Yellow Flag . . . much more sturdy and substantial than your wonderfully delicate blue iris. And you’re right, sometimes a most startling or treasured flower can greet us, so unexpectedly. as we turn a corner.

    • Wilderness areas are like that really. A tangle of branches and foliage so complex as to not make a good photograph, but then something stands out…sometimes a bright flower or white bird or yellow snake! Yeah snakes. LOL!!

      • Or a wonderfully shaggy inkcap fungus (not yet ready to post the fungi photos but they are accumulating)

      • Oh I love earthy fungi, mushrooms and the like….photos can be very magical or interesting. I shoot them once in awhile if I see any on trees in the swamp.

      • Well, give it another couple of weeks . . . in the hope my nose my lead me to a stinkhorn, and I’ll post my fungi-photos.

  4. Wow, if there is a flag to fly for Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, this Iris is it ~ the opening photo is stunning Judy. The whole series flows right along with your words…what an incredible place you live 🙂

    • It really was a surprise to see it there on its stem looking like a cross with a nice drape to it. After I posted this I had a sudden fear that it didn’t qualify as a cross without the top vertical piece but many crosses are like a T and some call it a Tau cross and some monks robes if laid out are in the shape of a T type cross. Lots of interesting info on crosses. A letter T is a cross. I am so happy that you enjoyed the image of it. Knowing me it is amazing that I actually only took two pictures of it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: