This is a wonderful time, the beard then expand their pencil slender shoots, reveal the spring a kaleidoscope of colors. Generally referred to as the flag, the perennial plant in the United States department of agriculture (usda) 3-9 area to flourish, the winter air temperature is below freezing, allow plant dormancy before next year’s growth.
“Anyone can grow iris,” says Doris Winton, who has had a lifelong attraction to the flower and is a master judge for the American Iris Society. While fragrance has diminished through hybridization, the size of blooms has increased, as has the palette. “Every color — except fire-engine red — can be found in bearded iris,” Doris says.
Below are Doris’s tips for growing outstanding bearded iris.
Iris Growing Tips
• Plant them in a sunny spot in late summer. Plants need to be well drained soil and at least six hours a day in the sun. All day the sun better keep dry roots. Because the roots are in the fleshy root structure of the roots of plants.
• Prepare their beds. Doris suggested that the low nitrogen fertilizer and soil pH value is slightly lower than 7, it is neutral. Two times a year, she granulated fertilizer application – and just after the bloom in early spring, when the root form of flowers next year. Only in extremely dry or after transplantation can use water.
• Give them room to breathe. Bearded iris require good air circulation. Plant them a minimum of 16 to 18 inches apart.
• Do not mulch. Mulching retains moisture, and too much moisture will cause soft rot of the rhizomes.
• Break off seedpods that form after the blooms have faded. This prevents seedlings from choking the surrounding soil. Seed formation also saps energy needed by the rhizomes, roots, and leaves.
• Prune back the foliage in the fall. This will reduce the chances of overwintering pests and diseases.
• Make dividing a habit. Divide clumps of bearded iris every three to four years in the late summer. (See the next page for detailed instructions on dividing and replanting bearded iris.)
Divide Bearded Iris
Bearded iris from called rhizomes thick root structure of the leaves, stems and roots. Roots of the plants mature, rhizome yield more, which in turn lead to more leaves and flowers. Over time, however, the original rhizome withers and dies off. When this happens, bloom production slows and it is necessary to divide the plant, removing and replanting the baby rhizomes so they can develop.
Bearded iris should be divided in the late summer, when the weather starts to cool. The division process illustrated below can be used for other plants that produce rhizomes, including canna, bergenia, dahlia, toad lily, and lily-of-the-valley.
1. Carefully dig the clumps with a garden fork or spade, taking care not to chop into the rhizomes more than necessary.
2. Separate the roots, separate them by hand. In some cases, you may need to use a sharp knife to separate some of the root. If so, the knife cut into 10% bleach/water solution.
A good rhizome will be about as thick as your thumb, have healthy roots, and have one or two leaf fans. Large, old rhizomes that have no leaf fans can be tossed.
3. Wash away the soil from the root, you can check each iris moth (a fat, white worms). If you find a diamond, destroy it. Some gardeners prefer in 10% bleach solution washing their irises roots in order to prevent the disease, but it won’t help the decomposition of plant.
Soft, smelly, or rotting plants should also be destroyed. Discard any that feel lightweight or hollow, and appear dead, like the rhizome shown here.
4. Cutting blade, and make them 4 to 6 inches long. That reduce the stress of plant experience, because it is focused on the new root regeneration rather than trying to keep long leaves.
5. Replant divisions, setting the rhizome higher in the planting hole than the fine roots, which should be fanned out. A bit of the top surface of the rhizome should be just visible at the soil surface.
6. Plants interval of 12 to 18 inches (near the short stem varieties, far apart). In order to best display, plant roots, leaf fan facing the same direction. When planting well watered, but unless the weather is dry, water or not to continue.
Some Great Irises
Iris flowers have three primary structures, and descriptions of a variety often refer to these parts. For example, in the flower shown here, ‘Fringe of Gold’, the drooping “falls” are white edged (or picoteed) in yellow. The upright “standards” are solid yellow. And the tiny fuzzy “beard” in the middle is white. You can use these structure names to imagine how an iris might look when you have only a text description.