The name of this plant comes from the goddess Iris, who, according to Greek mythology, carried messages for the gods. Her golden wings were said to sparkle with dew which, lit up by the sun’s rays, glistened with all  the colours of the rainbow. She was, moreover, the favourite of Juno, Queen of the Gods, because she always brought happy tidings…

This month our blog celebrates one of the most elegant of seasonal highlights. Almost 200 plant species come under the name of Iris, all of them members of the Iridaceous family. The flower of the Iris is known as ‘Giaggiolo’ in Italy, and this month the gardens of Villa Sangiovese are showcasing an explosion of violet colour.

The ‘Giaggiolo’ is a beautiful flower, but it is also its root, its rhyzome, that is very special; the source of the prized scent of Iris.

The gardens of Villa Sangiovese, a listed historic estate, offer an idyllic setting for relaxing walks through its rich mix of ancient woodland, flowering shrubs and herb gardens, which merge into the glorious countryside around it. Ruby peonies, brooms, roses and jasmine decorate  the garden, while potted  succulents and plants  such as Agave and Tradescantia punctuate the vistas with red-purple, green and black foliage. Decorative ornamental grasses whisper in the breeze … it’s an irresistable botanical experience.