Sisyrinchiums are charming little members of the Iris family. Here in the Northwest there are four species. The delicate blooms open early in the morning and are gone by nine or ten a.m. On a dark cloudy day they might last all day, but that is a rare occasion.
The four Sisyrinchium species are divided equally among the 'Grass Widows' and the 'Blue and Yellow-eyed Grasses.' Grass Widows have a reputation for being notoriously difficult to cultivate. The Blue/Yellow-eyed grasses, on the other hand, show signs of being potentially invasive, if they weren't so cute. Seeds that sprouted early last summer already have buds on them.
Kruckeberg's "Gardening with Native Plants of the Pacific Northwest" claims a germination rate of 10-20%. If so, my 6 original plants produced thousands of seeds to insure the germination of hundreds of them. Fortunately, they seem to be confining themselves to the artificial wetland I have prepared for them.
Jan., 2005 - Plants are evergreen, but get kind of ratty looking in midwinter. New seedlings develop a lot of red coloration in foliage.
05/14/2005 - first blooms open. Yellows seem a little more robust than blues (of course, since I like the blue better...). It will be interesting to see if any of the seedlings exhibit signs of cross-polination. Any resulting hybrids will be called Cross-eyed Grass, don't you think?