Irises forum: The show is over, now what?

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Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
Consider the lilies of the field
Seller of Garden Stuff Irises Hostas Region: Kentucky Lilies Peonies
Region: United States of America Garden Photography Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Cat Lover Heucheras
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bluegrassmom
May 26, 2016 6:01 AM CST
Hi, I was curious about what everyone does after the bloom season is over. We have had a lot of rain and my foliage looks very brown and spotty on most cultivars. A few leaves are rotting and loose anyway Angry Should I cut it back now? I am planning on leaving a few bee pods to develop. Is it to early to trim? Any help will be appreciated.

Teresa

Name: Tom
Southern Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Irises Vegetable Grower Butterflies Region: Wisconsin Keeps Horses Cat Lover
Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry Daylilies Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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tveguy3
May 26, 2016 7:53 AM CST
I don't usually trim leaves back at all, just keep the dead ones pulled off. Some people do trim them back. I have done that when I have an unusual year of ugly leaves. I don't think it really matters one way or the other. When to do that I'm not sure what others do in your zone. I would remove the spent bloom stalks right away though. I usually just start enjoying the lilies and day lilies that follow the irises. Smiling
I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion. - Alexander the Great
Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
Consider the lilies of the field
Seller of Garden Stuff Irises Hostas Region: Kentucky Lilies Peonies
Region: United States of America Garden Photography Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Cat Lover Heucheras
Image
bluegrassmom
May 26, 2016 8:29 AM CST
I think it is because we have had so much rain, but my leaves look nasty.
Name: Mary Ann
Kentucky
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Hostas Hummingbirder Daylilies Birds
Irises Keeps Horses Region: Kentucky Farmer Container Gardener Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Muddymitts
May 26, 2016 9:14 AM CST
Mine too, Teresa. And I'm still finding rotting fans. I've started my cleanup -- I cut or break off spent bloom-stalks, remove dead or rotting leaves -- and this year I am cutting back foliage. Especially in the Nursery beds, the leaves look SO bad I can't stand it. Also -- eliminating a lot of foliage allows sun/air to get to the rhizomes and I'm feeling like that's important this year. Shrug!
Thoughts become things -- choose the good ones. ([url=www.tut.com]www.tut.com[/url])
Name: Leslie
Durham, NC (Zone 8a)
Region: North Carolina Irises Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers hot summers Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Lestv
May 26, 2016 9:42 AM CST
I have some iris with very tall leaves, so along with removing all the stalks except those with bee pods, I will be cutting the fans a bit to allow the gardens to dry out. Lots of cleanup to do with weeding and removing of leaves too because of the constant rain this year. Then I really need to build the beds that are still not started. Help!
My road calls me, lures me west, east, south & north; most roads lead men homewards, my road leads me forth. - John Masefield

Region: California
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UndertheSun
May 26, 2016 10:09 AM CST
Now you order more... Big Grin
Name: Eric Jarrett
Vale, NC (Zone 7b)
Beekeeper Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry Region: North Carolina
EJarrett
May 26, 2016 10:11 AM CST
I agree
Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
Consider the lilies of the field
Seller of Garden Stuff Irises Hostas Region: Kentucky Lilies Peonies
Region: United States of America Garden Photography Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Cat Lover Heucheras
Image
bluegrassmom
May 26, 2016 11:11 AM CST
Thanks, Mary Ann. I will be trimming this afternoon. More rain now Angry

Order more!
Name: Cleta
Idaho Falls Idaho (Zone 4a)
Region: Idaho Lilies Irises
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cbelt1
May 26, 2016 11:18 AM CST
My iris are just getting warmed up here in SE Idaho. However we had a bad frost 2 weeks ago and I think a lot of the spathes on the early ones froze. They look desiccated and what blooms did survive are showing like a discolored, arthritic hand with the gnarled petals in cupping shape. They have no true iris form, but the later blooms on the same stalk are blooming better.
Cleta
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
May 26, 2016 11:30 AM CST
I cut the stalks and any leaves that look really bad, leave the rest. I usually sprinkle some preen around.

Region: California Cat Lover Irises Enjoys or suffers hot summers Dog Lover
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iciris
May 26, 2016 11:42 AM CST
Cry. Crying
Name: Celia
West Valley City, Utah (Zone 7a)
Pour vivre parmi les fleurs
Irises Garden Photography I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Butterflies Birds
Cat Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Hummingbirder Plant Identifier
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Zencat
May 26, 2016 11:53 AM CST
I try to take the high road and think...next year, next year, next year. It doesn't work. It usually turns to waaaaaaaah!
Name: Wes
Ohio (Zone 6a)
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Wes
May 26, 2016 12:20 PM CST
I cut stalks and anything unsightly. If I see they're sinking into the soil I build them up. I've tried growing corms (glads and crocs) in the thick of iris clumps to take further advantage of the foliage to no avail. Shade? I might transplant some healthy "up and running" specimens this year? I've grown crocosmia directly behind irises in the past and the view from a distance would easily fool anyone that didn't know what they were looking at...

With that said, in mixed beds I enjoy iris foliage throughout the season.

Region: California
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UndertheSun
May 26, 2016 12:33 PM CST
I remove all the spent stalks, remove the dead leaves, trim away all of the leaf spot and any trim back the leaves that are touching the ground.
Name: John
Kansas City,MO (Zone 6a)
Region: Missouri Composter Enjoys or suffers cold winters Plays in the sandbox
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yadah_tyger
May 26, 2016 1:22 PM CST
This is my next favorite time of the year. I set up my outside work area with a table that is a little taller then waist high. I then dig up each clump and bring it to the table. There I cut all blooms stalks all the way down to the rhizome. I remove all dead or older fans, exposing the rhizome to more air. I do any necessary surgery and sprinkle with comet with bleach. I then replant the clump and give the mother rhizome a good rinsing with MKP solution. In doing this I also get to thinning if needed. This year there is more urgent need in thinning due to Iris Virus!!! Rolling on the floor laughing I'm not at all where I want to be in the process due to the very excessive rain. I really dislike working in mud but not much choice.
It is also great therapy for RA. The chemo and steroid treatments aren't working so a good workout in the garden seems to help. I can usually get about 5 miles in equivalent steps in each day and hopefully by the end of June I'll be done, found room for the newbies, have one new bed built and lose 15 or 20 pounds.

Blessings
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' Theodore Roosevelt
[Last edited by yadah_tyger - May 26, 2016 1:24 PM (+)]
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Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
May 26, 2016 1:30 PM CST
@John, what is MKP solution? What is its purpose? A newbie asking! *Blush*
Name: John
Kansas City,MO (Zone 6a)
Region: Missouri Composter Enjoys or suffers cold winters Plays in the sandbox
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yadah_tyger
May 26, 2016 1:49 PM CST
MKP is 0-52-34 fertilizer that is water soluble. I use 1 teaspoon per gallon of water in a sprayer. The rhizomes seem to really love it. I've been using it for five years now.

Blessings
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' Theodore Roosevelt
Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
May 26, 2016 2:01 PM CST
Ah-ha! Thanks, John! Thank You!
Name: Lynn Golovich
Wyandotte, mi (Zone 6b)
"It's never to late to be what you
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LynnG
May 30, 2016 9:23 PM CST
Mine are just getting going in Michigan. It's a bummer whenever finish blooming. Hoping I get some ore blooms out of the rebloomers
Name: Mary Ann
Kentucky
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Hostas Hummingbirder Daylilies Birds
Irises Keeps Horses Region: Kentucky Farmer Container Gardener Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Muddymitts
May 30, 2016 10:16 PM CST
Then we'll rely on you to furnish pictures of your Iris season, Lynn!! It'll ease the pain of ours shutting down for the year...............
Thoughts become things -- choose the good ones. ([url=www.tut.com]www.tut.com[/url])

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