Thursday, January 27, 2011

Iris in My Garden

 I had a friend ask my a question about some iris she had purchased this fall.  As I had to do a little research to answer her question, I thought I would do a post on this awesome and easy to grow garden gem!

There are many types of iris with the bearded iris being the most common.  They are perennials that can grow in full sun (except where it is very hot, they will need some shade) in well drained soil.  Japanese and Louisiana iris grow better in wet soils. 

Iris don't like too much fertilizer.  They do better with low nitrogen commerical fertilizer.  Just good mulching with rich compost will give our iris's all they will need.

To promote extended blooming, remove the bloom stalk.  Clip the stalks as close to the base as possible.  Iris blooms make great cut flowers!

Bearded iris grow from a fleshy, bulb-like stem called a rhizome. The rhizome grows horizontally just below the soil surface. 

When planting iris, the rhizome needs to be high in the soil, and the roots well-anchored. This is done by digging two trenches with a ridge between them. The rhizome is placed on the ridge and the roots are carefully spread in the trenches. Then fill the trenches with soil, so that the top surface of the rhizome is barely beneath the surface of the soil. In heavy clay soils, the rhizome should be planted higher so that up to half of the rhizome is exposed above soil level. Make sure to firm the soil well and water thoroughly after planting.

The best planting time for iris is about six weeks after the last blooms die back to September, October.  You want them to get their roots well established before winter sets in.

Once you get your iris started, it will be hard to get rid of them.  Every spring they will come back alive and show off their beauty to you! 
***If you have a gardening question, shoot it to me!  I have a Horticulture background of over 27 years and would love to help you with any of your gardening challenges!***


  1. Can you just come to my house? I need all of the help I can get lol Seriously, how do you keep the rabbits from eating everything in sight?

  2. Thanks for posting this....I have some that need to be transplanted this Spring.


  3. Following you from Think of Me Thursday! You can find me at

  4. I love the Iris, also. Have some in the front yard that really need to be separated and am working toward that, this year. Will probably gift them to friends and family. I had a friend who literally had acres of the many varieties -- and he took care of each and every one! Phew!

  5. These are beautiful, I jus love the colour so intense, thanks for sharing.
    Coming to you via Java at Follow Friday 40 & Over.
    Helen x

  6. Visiting from the blog hop. I'm lovin' your blog here! Glad I found you!

  7. Great tips!
    I am a new follower from follow friday hop!

  8. A new follower from Hop Along Friday... See you.

  9. I'm a new Follower!
    I can't wait to have a garden this year...finally in a house with a yard so I can do it!

  10. I love Iris and we have lots of them in the side yard of the house we bought recently. I think I need to transfer them and perk them up in the spring because they were not looking the best.

    I am your new follower from Never Growing Old blog hop


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