My initial interest in irises was sparked by a garden in Bathurst NSW, not far from my parents’ property at Mount Lambie in the late 90s. I did some hybridising, and qualified as a judge, but the irises were put on hold when I moved between a few places for work.
In 2015, I moved from Sydney to 25 acres in Bilpin, in the Blue Mountains of NSW, and the “iris virus” struck again, and 42 Tall Bearded Iris were the first things planted.
I now have 1600 metres of iris beds, with almost 1100 different tall beardeds, in addition to dwarf and median beardeds, a selection of species iris, as well as Louisianas, Japanese (Ensatas) and other wetlands and water iris.
I’m currently President if the Iris Society of Australia, Secretary and Treasurer of the NSW division of the ISA, national Dykes Medal Trial Garden co-ordinator and host one of the Dykes Medal gardens and a NSW Trial Garden.
In April-May each year I travel to the Northern hemisphere to visit growers and gardens, attend conventions, and to hybridise, and import seed through quarantine. Recent years have included travels to America, Italy, France, Great Britain, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Poland. See the International Gallery page for pictures.
A chance meeting with Michael at a nursery in Sydney led to a visit to the Blue Mountains, and a business partnership was born.
I complement my full-time study of Landscape Architecture at the University of NSW with part-time work in a Sydney landscape architecture firm - JMD design. As Iris Australis grows I will be involved in sales and communication in tandem with Michael and help with anything else that is needed around the farm.