August Is Iris Month

The month of July has come to an end and most gardens are now looking phenomenal. Spring plants are finishing their blooms, while Summer flowers are just beginning. Weeds are trying their absolute best to grow and go to seed before its too late but overall the majority of gardens are considered “under control”. What this means is that gardeners may have less maintenance each week and are actively looking for ways to improve the gardens they care for. Luckily August is Iris month, meaning its the perfect time to Divide and Transplant your overgrown German Iris. These beautiful plants do very well for the first few years after planting but eventually get overgrown and they look ruff and their bloom is not great. In August it is recommended to dig out your overgrown plants and place them on a tarp. Then cut the leaves off to about 4 inches. Look at the roots and see if some look plump and healthy. The best clumps of healthy roots are used to re-plant or distribute to other parts of the garden. Dig them in with the top of the root above the soil surface and water them in. An ideal clump of Iris would be about 18 inches in diameter after division. A little fresh compost at planting is helpful and gets the plants off to a quick start. This rejuvenation should be done about once every 3-4 years.

Divide your Iris in August and get ready for a happy blooming plant next year!

Ken Salvail