Monday, April 18, 2016

How My Beaded Iris Blooms . . .

 Oh.... the magestically tall ~ Peach colored Beaded Iris....

~ I'd say you can never kill/destroy/rid one's self of
the lovely, delicate Iris 

The tall, beautiful iris, named after the Greek goddess who rode rainbows, comes in many magical colors.
Every gardener wants this perennial. Despite its divine origins, it is hardy, reliable, and easy to grow. Irises also attract butterflies and hummingbirds and make lovely cut flowers.
There are some 300 species in the genus Iris. The most familiar irises are the tall (at least 28 inches) bearded irises (Iris germanica).
The distinctive flowers have three large outer petals called “falls” and three inner upright petals called “standards.” The falls may have beards or crests. Bearded iris are so-called because they have soft hairs along the center of the falls. In crested iris, the hairs form a comb or ridge.
Most irises flower in early summer. Some, mostly bearded hybrids, are remontant, flowering again later in the summer.

Caring for my Beaded Iris
Apply a thin layer of compost around the base of plants each spring, leaving the rhizome (fleshy root) exposed. As flowers fade, cut back the flower stalks to the base of the plant. 
To encourage a second bloom on reblooming varieties, promptly remove faded flowers and maintain consistent watering throughout the summer. 
In autumn, trim away dead foliage and prune back healthy leaves to a height of 4 to 5 inches. 
Once the soil has frozen, apply a layer of mulch to help prevent roots from heaving out of the soil during alternate freezing and thawing. If heaving occurs, don't try to force plants back into the soil. Instead, cover rhizomes and exposed roots with soil. 
Divide bearded iris every 4 to 5 years, preferably in late summer. Each division should have one or two leaf fans. Older rhizomes that have few white feeding roots should be discarded
Site Selection
       Select a site with full sun and well-drained soil.
Planting Instructions
       Plant bearded iris in mid summer to early fall, spacing plants 1 to 2 feet apart, depending on variety. Excellent soil drainage is a must. 

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