Yes, indeed, I have the blues, but I'm not bawling.
This is the kind of blues that gives me a big grin.
My Blue-eyed Grass is in bloom! Those dainty little blossoms can cheer me up like no other plant in my yard.
Formally known as Sisyrinchium angustifolium,. this oh-so-pretty native plant only blooms for a few weeks each Spring. But what an impact it makes!
Blue-eyed Grass is not a grass, but a member of the iris family. A perennial, it grows in a clump and stays short, about 1-2 feet high and equally wide. Mine is a gift from a friend, and it has grown and spread considerably in the last year.
Blue-eyed grass is a wonderful border or filler plant. The foliage looks nice even when it's not blooming. Frankly, I sort of forgot it was there until it bloomed last week. I didn't even notice that it was getting ready to bloom!
Now, it's impossible to ignore. I could look at it for hours, I think, especially in the early evening as I sit on my deck with a glass of wine. It's just plain adorable.
The 6-petal blooms stand tall and proud on individual stalks, with yellow centers. The petals vary in color. Mine are a deep blue, almost purple shade.
Its native habitat is open woods, moist pinelands, meadows, marshes, the edges of swamps and along roadsides.
But it's the perfect urban garden resident, happy as can be with very little care once established and tolerant of both full sun and light shade.
If you want to dig the blues in your garden, contact a native plant nursery. Florida Native Plants Nursery in northeast Sarasota County carries it, and owner Laurel Schiller is a fount of native plant knowledge. If you know of other sources for this plant, please post them in the comments section.
I did actually see blue-eyed grass very recently at a Home Depot as well -- one of the Florida Friendly Plants grown by Riverview Flower Farms.
Or, make friends with someone who has this adorable flower in their garden and is willing to share the easily divided clumps with you. You won't be blue with this happy face to welcome Spring!