In partnership with the « Jardin des Plantes » in Rouen the owners and gardeners at the chateau of Mesnil Geoffroy have very recently planted a large number of irises.  These have been drawn from the collection of the Jardin des Plantes which is well known for its irises from the 19th century and for its collection of dahlias.  Irises were once regarded as the « kings » of the country house garden and it is the aim of the Jardin des Plantes to ensure that rare varieties of iris are not lost.

The irises have been planted in the orchard so that they will complement the fruit trees when they are in bloom.  There are around 210 varieties of iris with a stunning range of colours.

The Egyptians considered irises as being sacred.  In France, irises became the symbol of royalty (under the heraldic name « fleur de lys »).

Although for a time irises were considered as being « out of fashion » by the perfume industry, irises are once again being used as one of the ingredients in a number of perfumes because of their strong floral fragrance.