The Q&A Archives: Identifying White Streaks on Iris

Question: My bearded irises have vertical white streaks on the leaves and they did not bloom very well this year. It appears that whatever it is has also spread to my daylilies. PLEASE HELP!!! Susan Shedd Blue Ridge, GA

Answer: I can't say for sure without more information, but it sounds like your lilies and iris have a viral disease. I suggest that you have your local extension service give you a positive I.D. on the problem - their phone number is 706-632-3061. Unfortunately, if it is a virus at work, there's no cure - you'll need to pull out and discard the plants, and begin again. There may be resistant varieties of iris and lilies, so be sure to ask your nursery specifically for these. Viruses can be avoided bycontrolling insects that spread them from plant to plant, usually aphids or other "true" bugs with straw-like mouthparts. Keep your gardens and lawns well weeded and mowed, and identify the offending pests as soon as you can, so you'll be able to findthe best method for controling or avoiding them.

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