Irises forum: Iris rhizome rot

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Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
Jun 13, 2016 9:06 AM CST
What to do if there is a partially rotted iris rhizome? I have one with about 1/2 of it that is soft. That would be rot, right?
[Last edited by Barbalee - Jun 13, 2016 9:07 AM (+)]
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Name: Jean
Prairieville, LA (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier The WITWIT Badge Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Moonhowl
Jun 13, 2016 11:24 AM CST
Hi Barbalee.

This link has a lot of info on Iris rot and remedy. If I encounter a soft or mushy rhizome, I lift the whole plant, cut off the soft area (cut back to a clean firm place making only one cut to prevent spreading the bacteria) and treat with at 10% bleach solution. (9 parts water to 1 equal part bleach), Make sure to clean the knife or pruners to prevent spreading the infection.

http://www.dvis-ais.org/iris-rot_remedies.html

http://www.irises.org/About_Irises/Cultural%20Information/Pe...
Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
Jun 13, 2016 11:27 AM CST
Thank you, Jean!
Name: Jean
Prairieville, LA (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier The WITWIT Badge Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Moonhowl
Jun 13, 2016 11:37 AM CST
You are most welcome. I hope this helps clear up the problem. Crossing Fingers!

Thanks for the acorn...I do hope the info was worth the gift. (GRIN)
[Last edited by Moonhowl - Jun 13, 2016 11:39 AM (+)]
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Name: Ivor
Middletown, DE (Zone 7a)
Irises Cat Lover Garden Photography Region: Delaware
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Islandview
Jun 13, 2016 11:37 AM CST
I agree
As long as you have some unaffected parts of the rhizome, by all means cut the diseased part and distinfect in 10% bleach and dry. I've had some that I had to cut by two thirds and yet they recovered in the same season to produce flowers.
Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
Jun 13, 2016 11:39 AM CST
Awesome, Islandview! This one is done blooming, so I think treating it will allow it to bloom next year. Thanks!
Name: Arlyn
Whiteside County, Illinois (Zone 5a)
Irises Beekeeper Region: Illinois Celebrating Gardening: 2015
crowrita1
Jun 13, 2016 7:32 PM CST
If it's the "spent" mother rhizome that is rotting, I think I'd remove the whole thing.....just save the increases, and pitch the rest. I can only assume it's the bacterial rot that you are talking about.........it has a VERY bad odor....and, if so, the bleach water will kill the bacteria. If it is one of the "fungal" type rots ........the odor is almost "sweet smelling, or slightly "yeasty" ( like bread dough) the bleach won't be nearly as effective.
Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
Jun 13, 2016 7:35 PM CST
Oh, Arlyn! You saved me from myself! Yeah, duh...this is the mama, so she wouldn't bloom again anyway! What WAS I thinking??? Duh! Thank you...you saved me from my own stupidity as a newbie! Rolling on the floor laughing Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!
Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
Jun 13, 2016 7:37 PM CST
And because she was in a pot, I can chuck all the dirt and sterilize the pot (yup, bad odor but not sweetish).
Name: Arlyn
Whiteside County, Illinois (Zone 5a)
Irises Beekeeper Region: Illinois Celebrating Gardening: 2015
crowrita1
Jun 13, 2016 7:52 PM CST
In that case, I'd cut the 'babies" off, give them a good 'swish" in some bleach water....and then lay them aside ...in the shade.....for a day, to let the 'open wound" dry a bit, and then replant. New "dirt" would be a good idea, too Thumbs up !
Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
Jun 13, 2016 8:31 PM CST
Thank you, thank you again...all of you! And you got it on the final card, Arlyn! Thank You! Thank You!
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
Jun 14, 2016 3:55 AM CST
Bear in mind, this is what I have been doing. I am not saying try it, it just has been working for me.
In the beginning of this season when rot would show up, I would only cut out minimum of mother rhizome and treat with bleach. Unfortunately in most cases, rot continued and took the increases with it. I then got more radical. At the very first sign of a softening rhizome, I cut the entire mother rhizome out, treat with bleach and leave the empty space there to dry and get air. About 3 weeks after that I fill the empty space with new dirt. Using this method all but 1 recovered.
Also, if there is any sign of rot on the increase I dig the entire plant up and destroy it. I also dig an area of about 1 foot around where the plant was and discard that dirt.
The reason for all this is a 25% total loss rate last Fall and this Spring starting with similar rot rates.
Also, as a sidebar, I am doing everything I can to increase worm count. Worms make healthy soil.

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
Jun 14, 2016 9:16 AM CST
That sounds like a great way to handle it, John. Because my one rotter was in a pot, I cut out the mama and repotted the increase in a new pot with new soil. I'll know soon if the rot continues, and if it does, I'll destroy the whole thing. Your method sounds like what I'll do if it happens in the garden bed. Crossing my fingers that it won't happen! Crossing Fingers! Thank You!
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
Jun 14, 2016 10:33 AM CST
I sure hope it works out for you. Remember if you decide to destroy a planting, make sure you don't put it in your compost pile. I have a distruction pile in the furthest corner of my back yard away from everything.

Blessings
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' Theodore Roosevelt
Name: Bonnie Sojourner
Harris Brake Lake, Arkansas (Zone 7a)
Magnolia zone
Region: United States of America Region: Arkansas Master Gardener: Arkansas Irises Bulbs Seed Starter
Gardens in Buckets Garden Art Plant and/or Seed Trader Moon Gardener Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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grannysgarden
Jun 14, 2016 3:33 PM CST
My personal garden practice is to never put any part of an iris in a compost pile that may go back into the iris garden.
I love my garden.... and Jesus, and coffee, and naps.......
Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
Jun 14, 2016 3:45 PM CST
I put the mama rhizome (the one with rot) and the pot dirt directly into the dumpster. Poor baby was taken to the city dump today. To all, Thank You! Thank You! !!

Bonnie, when I've cut stalks and dried up leaves, I've put those in the compost pile. Is that a bad idea?
Name: Bonnie Sojourner
Harris Brake Lake, Arkansas (Zone 7a)
Magnolia zone
Region: United States of America Region: Arkansas Master Gardener: Arkansas Irises Bulbs Seed Starter
Gardens in Buckets Garden Art Plant and/or Seed Trader Moon Gardener Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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grannysgarden
Jun 14, 2016 4:02 PM CST
It is just my garden practice not to add any parts of irises, no matter how healthy they seem, to a compost mix that will go back on the irises. I toss all parts of discarded irises down into a ravine where they can go back to soil but not to my iris bed.
I love my garden.... and Jesus, and coffee, and naps.......
Name: Barbalee
Amarillo, TX (Zone 7a)
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Barbalee
Jun 14, 2016 4:48 PM CST
Good to know, Bonnie! Thank You!
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
Jun 15, 2016 2:10 AM CST
Same here, I stopped composting any parts from iris cleanup. Didn't like the smell of stalks as they decomposed. Compost piles should be close to odorless. Melon rinds, on the other hand, make great compost. Draws the worms. As you can tell, I'm a huge fan of worms.

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
Jun 15, 2016 6:57 AM CST
I am too, John. I went so far as to order some worms this year to begin this gardening adventure! I guess I'm lucky that I only had one iris bloom and therefore only one stalk to put into the compost pile...never did smell it!
[Last edited by Barbalee - Jun 15, 2016 6:59 AM (+)]
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