My friend Allie was house hunting about the same time Robb and I were. Now that we're all settled, we're doing a bit of plant swapping. Last weekend, she brought over some goodies, including a pot of crocosmia.
Crocosmia are native to South Africa (which has a climate similar to ours), and are related to irises. They grow from corms, and are particularly interesting in that the corms form chains, with the oldest ones at the bottom of the bunch. The roots of the oldest corms are able to actually drag the chain deeper into the soil.
Crocosmia grows very happily around here. The hummingbirds love it. The incredibly-hard-to-photograph bushtits do, too.
Back in January, I divided some of the crocosmia that came with our house, and put them next to our little herb garden. Allie's crocosmia were planted on the opposite end of this same garden bed. I'm not sure if they'll bloom this year, or not.
Our garden boasts a lot of plants that grow from bulbs or corms or rhizomes. I'm loving this, because it gives me the freedom to temporarily "park" these plants somewhere for a year. When I get a better handle on my garden, I'll be able to move them again, without doing much harm.
Also, when things go dormant, I'll be able to share some of my garden bounty with my friends.