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Apr 20, 2018 9:54 AM CST
North Central Massachusetts (N (Zone 5b)
Life & gardens: make them beautiful
Bee Lover Butterflies Garden Photography Cat Lover Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Region: Massachusetts
Region: Ukraine
Hi Iris lovers. I have never grown an Iris so am totally new to the subject.

I fell in love with then ordered and just received my first! It's a bareroot (or rhizome?) and the name is Black Flowered.

The vendor I purchased from only provides general planting instructions so I'm a bit unsure as to how to plant this beauty. Should I soak the root first? Can I plant it in a pot, or must it be planted in the ground? Do I feed or fertilize when I plant it? Will it hurt to wait four days before planting?

Any advice anyone is willing to provide will be wonderfully helpful. I love all my plants and want to nurture them in any way I can. I know they will reward me beautifully.

Thank You! in advance.
You don't kick walls down, you pull the nails out and let them fall.
AKA Joey.
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Apr 20, 2018 10:06 AM CST
Name: Liz Best
Elizabeth Colorado (Zone 4b)
Annuals Winter Sowing Plant and/or Seed Trader Peonies Lilies Irises
Hummingbirder Dragonflies Dog Lover Daylilies Bee Lover Birds
Is that the Siberian iris, Black Flowered? Very pretty! I'm not that experienced and haven't been incredibly successful so far with them so I'll leave the advice for others with more skills! Here in CO I'm told they do better in pots sunk in the ground rather than direct planting to keep more moisture around the roots. You wouldn't have the same issue, though!
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Apr 20, 2018 10:15 AM CST
Name: Evelyn
Sierra foothills, Northern CA (Zone 8a)
Irises Region: Ukraine Garden Procrastinator Bee Lover Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader
Region: California Cat Lover Deer Bulbs Foliage Fan Annuals
Joanna ~ Welcome! to the Iris Forum! Hurray!

I don't grow Siberian Irises either, but I am sure there are others here that do.
"Luck favors the prepared mind." - Thomas Jefferson
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Apr 20, 2018 10:15 AM CST
North Central Massachusetts (N (Zone 5b)
Life & gardens: make them beautiful
Bee Lover Butterflies Garden Photography Cat Lover Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Region: Massachusetts
Region: Ukraine
You're right Liz. I have a raised planter area (about 2.5 to 3' depth) that is rich yet drains well enough for lilies and other bulbs to flourish. And pots, well, they're easy to control I guess...

Another of my concerns would be dividing them later on down the road. I'm guessing that would be two or so years????

No, it's not the Siberian variety, but this one:
https://www.whiteflowerfarm.co...
You don't kick walls down, you pull the nails out and let them fall.
AKA Joey.
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Apr 20, 2018 10:16 AM CST
North Central Massachusetts (N (Zone 5b)
Life & gardens: make them beautiful
Bee Lover Butterflies Garden Photography Cat Lover Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Region: Massachusetts
Region: Ukraine
evelyninthegarden said:Joanna ~ Welcome! to the Iris Forum! Hurray!

I don't grow Siberian Irises either, but I am sure there are others here that do.


Thank You! Evelyn!
You don't kick walls down, you pull the nails out and let them fall.
AKA Joey.
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Apr 20, 2018 10:32 AM CST
North Central Massachusetts (N (Zone 5b)
Life & gardens: make them beautiful
Bee Lover Butterflies Garden Photography Cat Lover Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Region: Massachusetts
Region: Ukraine
In case pictures might help (still don't know if this is a rhizome or a root!)
Thumb of 2018-04-20/joannakat/90104c Thumb of 2018-04-20/joannakat/9e0ec0

The ends of the long roots feel somewhat dry, but the part closer to the crown is slightly moist.
You don't kick walls down, you pull the nails out and let them fall.
AKA Joey.
Avatar for crowrita1
Apr 20, 2018 10:46 AM CST
Name: Arlyn
Whiteside County, Illinois (Zone 5a)
Beekeeper Region: Illinois Irises Celebrating Gardening: 2015
There is a little cultural info, here(from the American Iris Society website):
http://wiki.irises.org/Spec/Sp...

Generally....your soil should be "slightly" acid, and lots of humus added....a bag of "peat soil", or, of composted cow manure, will help in both areas. as to planting depth, division, etc. The AIS site has more "cultural" info. I'll post a link to it in another post.
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Apr 20, 2018 10:47 AM CST
(Zone 9b)
Region: California Garden Ideas: Level 1
Welcome Joanna! Welcome!

That is a Siberian iris and I have no experience in growing those. I grow bearded irises and what you have there is a beardless iris. Since it's a Siberian, it has different growing conditions than bearded irises and other beardless irises. I know all I've done is confuse you more, so I'll let others with knowledge in growing these step in.

I do love the dark irises, so I hope it does well for you.

edited to add:
Arlyn Thumbs up
Last edited by UndertheSun Apr 20, 2018 10:49 AM Icon for preview
Avatar for crowrita1
Apr 20, 2018 10:47 AM CST
Name: Arlyn
Whiteside County, Illinois (Zone 5a)
Beekeeper Region: Illinois Irises Celebrating Gardening: 2015
There is a little cultural info, here(from the American Iris Society website):
http://wiki.irises.org/Spec/Sp...

Generally....your soil should be "slightly" acid, and lots of humus added....a bag of "peat soil", or, of composted cow manure, will help in both areas. as to planting depth, division, etc. The AIS site has more "cultural" info. I'll post a link to it in another post.

http://wiki.irises.org/Spec/Sp...
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Apr 20, 2018 11:08 AM CST
Name: Jan Wax
Mendocino County, N. CA (Zone 9a)
I'm a semi-retired studio potter.
Dog Lover Region: California Organic Gardener Daylilies Irises Hummingbirder
Dahlias Garden Art Cat Lover Vegetable Grower Birds Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Welcome! Joanna!
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Apr 20, 2018 11:16 AM CST
Name: Liz Best
Elizabeth Colorado (Zone 4b)
Annuals Winter Sowing Plant and/or Seed Trader Peonies Lilies Irises
Hummingbirder Dragonflies Dog Lover Daylilies Bee Lover Birds
I'd soak the roots for a while if they feel dry, just until they feel more pliable so they don't break when you're planting. Water them in well, if you have a fertilizer you've been successful with for flowering plants I'd use it, either up under the roots with a soil buffer between to keep the roots from a contact burn or on the surface, not touching the new sprouts. I think the ones I've lost have been because I treated them like beardeds, they need more watering and probably a bit of shade to get established. I use stackable patio chairs over peonies I plant in the spring to give them shade for a few weeks, works wonders to keep the soil from drying and reduce transplant shock from going into immediate full sun. I've ordered several Siberian's for this year and that's going to be my plan of attack unless someone offers a better method! Sorry I don't have more concrete suggestions, I'll be watching this thread in case an experienced grower weighs in! Hope they grow well for you, quite stunning flower!
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Apr 20, 2018 11:22 AM CST
North Central Massachusetts (N (Zone 5b)
Life & gardens: make them beautiful
Bee Lover Butterflies Garden Photography Cat Lover Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Region: Massachusetts
Region: Ukraine
janwax said: Welcome! Joanna!


Thank You! Jan!
You don't kick walls down, you pull the nails out and let them fall.
AKA Joey.
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Apr 20, 2018 11:24 AM CST
North Central Massachusetts (N (Zone 5b)
Life & gardens: make them beautiful
Bee Lover Butterflies Garden Photography Cat Lover Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Region: Massachusetts
Region: Ukraine
LizinElizabeth said:I'd soak the roots for a while if they feel dry, just until they feel more pliable so they don't break when you're planting. Water them in well, if you have a fertilizer you've been successful with for flowering plants I'd use it, either up under the roots with a soil buffer between to keep the roots from a contact burn or on the surface, not touching the new sprouts. I think the ones I've lost have been because I treated them like beardeds, they need more watering and probably a bit of shade to get established. I use stackable patio chairs over peonies I plant in the spring to give them shade for a few weeks, works wonders to keep the soil from drying and reduce transplant shock from going into immediate full sun. I've ordered several Siberian's for this year and that's going to be my plan of attack unless someone offers a better method! Sorry I don't have more concrete suggestions, I'll be watching this thread in case an experienced grower weighs in! Hope they grow well for you, quite stunning flower!


Liz, what a great idea about the patio chairs! Definitely doable whether in ground or in pot!
Also great advice about the fertilizer. Thank You! !
You don't kick walls down, you pull the nails out and let them fall.
AKA Joey.
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Apr 20, 2018 11:26 AM CST
North Central Massachusetts (N (Zone 5b)
Life & gardens: make them beautiful
Bee Lover Butterflies Garden Photography Cat Lover Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Region: Massachusetts
Region: Ukraine
UndertheSun said:Welcome Joanna! Welcome!

That is a Siberian iris and I have no experience in growing those. I grow bearded irises and what you have there is a beardless iris. Since it's a Siberian, it has different growing conditions than bearded irises and other beardless irises. I know all I've done is confuse you more, so I'll let others with knowledge in growing these step in.

I do love the dark irises, so I hope it does well for you.

edited to add:
Arlyn Thumbs up


Thank You! Arlyn! I didn't even know there were different types of irises! And I guess that if there's a bearded iris, then there would be a beardless one too, but I didn't know that either! I obviously know nothing! Hilarious!
You don't kick walls down, you pull the nails out and let them fall.
AKA Joey.
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Apr 20, 2018 11:36 AM CST
Name: Frank Richards
Clinton, Michigan (Zone 5b)

Hydrangeas Peonies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Master Level
Probably closely related to Siberian iris, the roots look similar. the link you provided said the common name was Siberian iris:)

I have many Siberian iris and they do best in damper soil.

when planting new ones I usually cut the long roots in half.

actually, i think they are rhizomes

once established, they are hard to kill
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Apr 20, 2018 11:37 AM CST
(Zone 9b)
Region: California Garden Ideas: Level 1
We've all started out knowing nothing. Big Grin Even after years of growing them, I still know nothing. *Blush* Hilarious!

I can see how my post was confusing, I was giving Arlyn a thumbs up for his response.
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Apr 20, 2018 1:26 PM CST
Name: Leslie
Durham, NC (Zone 8a)
Garden Photography Cat Lover Irises Region: North Carolina Peonies Enjoys or suffers hot summers
Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Sibs like to be in slightly more acidic soil, which is very unlike bearded iris. If you go to the front page of the iris database here on NGA: The Irises Database

Then click to open "more information" under Cultivation of Siberian Iris and you will find a good description of how to plant and maintain your new iris. It is really a beauty by the way!
"The chimera is a one time happenstance event where the plant has a senior moment and forgets what it is doing." - Paul Black
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Apr 20, 2018 2:17 PM CST
Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
irises
Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Irises Region: Northeast US Region: United Kingdom Region: United States of America
Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Joanna that is a rhizome so don't bury it. It should have the top above ground as instructions show. The roots are below ground. The Iris Society of MA will have their show on May 28 Memorial Day at the Harvey Wheeler building in Concord MA. see our web site. ISM. for directions. Why not visit. We will give all sorts of news although most of the irises will be bearded ones at that time of year. Ask some of the members & says you are new to the plants.
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Apr 20, 2018 3:30 PM CST
Name: daphne
san diego county, ca (Zone 10a)
Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Welcome! joanna, i don't grow sibs (siberian irises), so i'm sorry i have no knowledge to impart. i do grow another kind of beardless iris, which we on the forum refer to as ji's ( Japanese iris) they like more water than the bearded variety, which i do have, too.

japanese iris love a more acidic soil, and if fed lime (which is the opposite on the ph scale) will kill them.

good luck on your new adventure, and browse through the posts. you'll see photos of many wonderful bearded irises blooming in forum members gardens.
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Apr 20, 2018 4:24 PM CST
Name: Robin
Melbourne, Australia (Zone 10b)
Region: Australia Garden Photography Cat Lover Irises Seed Starter
Welcome! Joanna
There is some good information on this Australian website:
https://www.dayliliesinaustral...

It is described as "Best in a wet pond margin or damp clay soil" at the Woodbridge nursery website
http://www.woodbridgenursery.c...

I think it would struggle to survive if you plant it in sandy soil.

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