The Q&A Archives: Siberian Iris

Question: I was just given 2 mature Siberian Iris plants that were transplanted out of my step son's garden. After I had planted them the long leaves lay on the ground and i don't know if I should cut them back and wait for next year - or leave them be. Thank you

Answer: It's natural for the foliage to be a bit droopy after transplanting. You can cut the foliage down to about 6 inches, just like you would for bearded iris.

Siberian iris are enjoying increasing popularity, which is understandable given how easily they may be grown. Unlike bearded iris, they tolerate a wide range of soil moisture conditions, thriving in damp and even wet areas, since they grow from fibrous roots rather than fleshy rhizomes. They also bloom in partial shade?though not as well as in full sunlight?and they?re not bothered much by iris borer, bacterial soft rot or other iris problems.

Known for their graceful appearance, Siberian iris produce copious amounts of arching grass-like leaves that stay green all summer. Late each spring they burst forth with delicate beardless flowers in a rainbow of colors: blues, purple, maroon, white, pink, and yellow.

You can divide or plant Siberian iris either in spring or in late summer, the same time as bearded iris. Like bearded iris, Siberian iris may need to be divided every three or four years. Select a sunny site that receives ample moisture in spring. Be sure to dig a hole that?s wide enough to allow plenty of room for the spreading roots and the large clump that will develop over time.

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