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Jul 16, 2017 7:56 PM CST
|I was given two bags of iris from a friend that divided hers and I found a box full marked free on the side of the road. I had good intentions but they've been sitting for weeks. Is it too late to plant or to save the bulbs? I don't want to waste time planting if it's hopeless but I don't want to throw away what might still be viable. What should I do? |
Jul 16, 2017 8:50 PM CST
|I live in a very dry area, so maybe some will chime in that lives in your area. That said, I would plant them unless they are soft and smelling (rot). Two years ago I dug up some NO ID white irises and forgot about them. They baked in our hot sun all summer long. In the fall, when I found them, some of the smaller rhizomes had died. The larger rhizomes were planted and they lived and grew. Irises are tough.|
Jul 16, 2017 8:51 PM CST
|Sorry I forgot so say to the iris forum.|
Jul 16, 2017 8:51 PM CST
|Assuming they are bearded irises and rhizomes haven't gotten mushy, they should be fine. Many of the beardless types won't do well if the roots are allowed to dry out, but bearded irises will tolerate a great deal of neglect.|
Jul 16, 2017 9:06 PM CST
|I do believe they are bearded. The rhizomes are mostly dry. I believe there are some mushy ones in there. Should I go ahead and plant or would it be best to store them?|
Jul 17, 2017 2:39 AM CST
| Tara! |
If the rhizomes are firm, I would soak the roots for a day or two and then plant them and remember to water them in. They should be just fine!
You don't know if it will grow until you try!
Jul 17, 2017 4:59 AM CST
|Welcome to the iris forum Tara. I live in middle- ish AR and if I were you I would sort through them, discard any that are soft then plant the others now. The rhizome, that is the fat part that looks like the bulb, should be planted half in and half out of the soil. We call it 'like a duck on water' with his back and leaves above and his roots and belly below the soil. In other areas it is done differently but in our zone they grow best if planted like this. I would water them for the first week or so, never letting them stand in water, and soon you will see little green leaves beginning to grow on one end of the rhizome. Once established they will, for the most part, take care of themselves. You may or may not get bloom next year as they are using their stored energy to survive while out of the soil. Bearded irises are not like bulbous spring plants as they do not go into an extended dormancy and lose their leaves. So planting them right away will be a good thing. Glad you joined us!|
An apple a day keeps the doctor away.... and everyone else if you throw it hard enough.
Jul 17, 2017 5:32 AM CST
| Tara. |
I agree with Bonnie and Lilli. I would discard the mushy ones and plant the others now after soaking the roots (just the roots, not the rhizome). Water them regularly until they establish, but don't water them excessively.
Jul 17, 2017 9:51 AM CST
|Thanks for the advice everyone! I'm going to clear a space by my other irises and get them in this week.|
Jul 17, 2017 12:41 PM CST
|Welcome Tara! Hope you get lots of joy from your irises. |
My road calls me, lures me west, east, south & north; most roads lead men homewards, my road leads me forth. - John Masefield
san diego county, ca (Zone 10a)
Jul 17, 2017 4:56 PM CST
Jul 19, 2017 6:02 PM CST
Jul 20, 2017 2:34 PM CST
Good advice given. Hope they nicely surprise you next season with at least a few blossoms. Bonnie's explanation of planting works well here. Only in a very hot dry environment should the rhizomes be completely covered with the soil/sand to help keep them cooler.