"It is not an exaggeration to write that horticulturist and author Norris (Iowa Gardener’s Travel Guide) is crazy about bearded irises. In this funny and informative guide, he shares his passion for the flower and his expertise gained from years as one of the country’s most respected iris breeders. Norris is a charming guide. It’s difficult not to be seduced by his enthusiasm and tantalizing descriptions of the colors, textures, ruffles, and patterns of the iris species. For those who have never grown the flower, he provides an overview of the different types of irises and straightforward advice on cultivation and propagation. Those who already grow this perennial garden favorite will find it impossible to explore this gallery without compiling a wish list for their own gardens. A resource section with specialty nurseries, public iris gardens, and organizations, along with an index, make this a complete guide." (Publishers Weekly
"It's a rainbow of a book, with deliciously coloured section pages and graphics that mark it out as having a modern approach to this potentially old-fashioned flower." (The Independent
"Norris will offer fresh inspiration, as well as growing tips and descriptions of recommended cultivars." (NJ.com
"A green thumbs up, especially as this is a fresh, timely, and appealing presentation of the topic."
"Comprehensive and up-to-date, all the while brimming with an enthusiasm that is exhilarating, inspiring."
(The American Gardener
“This is a book that’s a joy to just curl up with, whether you want to savor the beauty of the images or learn more about this versatile garden perennial.”
"[Norris] is an enthusiastic young American who writes in a readable style with his passion for irises coming across on each page."
(The Garden, the RHS Magazine
“A handsome book.”
About the Author
Kelly D. Norris is a 25-year-old horticulturist, plant breeder, and plantsman from Iowa. He is the award-winning author of three books including the Iowa Gardener's Travel Guide
, the first travel guide to Iowa's public gardens and nurseries, an as-yet-unpublished work about the lives of passionate gardeners and Cultivating the Rainbow: A Guide to Bearded Irises for Beginners and Enthusiasts
due out May 2012 from Timber Press. As a speaker he has garnered national acclaim for his high-energy, zealous presentations, leading many to name him as one of the rising stars of American horticulture.
He currently manages Rainbow Iris Farm (rainbowfarms.net), a seven-acre nursery owned by his family, edits Irises: The Bulletin of the American Iris Society
, and serves in several leadership capacities throughout the horticulture industry. Kelly is the youngest person to receive the Iowa State Horticultural Society's Presidential Citation, Award of Merit and Honor Award in the organization's 150 year history, awards that exemplify service and contributions to horticulture in Iowa. In 2011, he was also honored by the Perennial Plant Association with the Young Professional Award, recognizing early contributions to the advancement of herbaceous perennials in American horticulture. Kelly's unique 10 years of experience in the industry began at age 14 when he talked his parents into buying a nursery. In that time he's become one of the few go-to experts on marketing horticulture to Gen Xs and Ys.
His love for exploration has taken him to southern and central Texas, the Ozarks, the Black Hills, and all over the Midwest in search of new plants for gardens. Kelly holds a bachelor's and master's degree in horticulture from Iowa State University. In his M.S. program he studied Dirca
, a genus of rare shrubs commonly known as leatherwoods.
You may also be interested in the author's own Web site, KellyDNorris.com.