I absolutely adore flowers. Growing up, I spent hours a day playing outside, learning plant names, helping my mother in her garden, and exploring the area around our home, flower identification guide in hand, trying to find new blooms that may have opened or popped up since the day before. I even studied Earth Science and Environmental Science as an undergraduate at the University of Michigan, so strong is my love for nature and the outdoors. I’ve been attempting to visit every garden, independent farm, and major park in the state of Michigan to share the most beautiful places with you, and as I was looking back through my old photos recently, I realized I had never written about Iris Farms near Traverse City, Michigan. We visited a few summers ago and spent a lovely early morning, just after a light rain shower, picking irises, and exploring the hundreds and hundreds of different colors and varieties they grow here. It was simply lovely!
Irises bloom in Northern Michigan from early May to late June. I highly recommend calling ahead to see when they’re open, because it is a seasonal business so they can’t guarantee when their seasonal will begin. We visited here back in 2018, so since I haven’t visited lately, they may have changed things a bit, so I will speak to my lovely experience on our visit, but I encourage you to double check with the farm owners before heading out to make sure they still offer the following services, and that they will be open when you plan to visit.
There was a surprising amount of things to do at Iris Farms, and we spent about 2 hours there. I, of course, took pictures of the beautiful irises, as it had just rained prior to our visit, and the raindrops acted like tiny magnifying glasses, making it easier to see the details of each flower, and the rain had brightened up the color of the flowers making them even more enchanting. We opted to pick some flowers, since I believe it was the end of the season so they were offering U-pick. We we’re given a small basket and some garden snips, and set about selecting a few of our favorite flowers.
Prior to the brief u-pick season, they sell Iris rhizomes and visitors can wander their fields to see which flower varieties they would like to purchase for their own homes. Iris Farms is also an event venue and hosts things like small weddings in a gorgeous, flower-filled space. We also spent some time admiring the pre-made flower arrangements they were selling. I believe they sold a few other garden/iris related things there, but I can’t quite remember what they were. I do remember talking with a nice employee who gave me advice on how to make my flowers last longer by replacing the water every day or two, using flower food, and regularly trimming the stems so they can continue to take up water and stay fresh. I think my flowers lasted about a week in a vase.
See more flower content and explore gardens around the world, here.