photo: bearded iris rot
Overcrowded and smothered by dead leaves, these bearded iris rhizomes are in danger of developing iris rot during the hot, humid summers in Central Texas.

July 29th, 2003
Iris Rot in Bearded Iris

Reader Janette Boley asks for help combatting iris rot.

When the weather’s hot and humid, bearded iris rhizomes have a tendency to turn to mush. When the temperatures hit the 90s, you should not feed your irises. If you water at all, you should water carefully–deeply, but infrequently. Never allow water to stand on iris rhizomes. Water in the morning so that the rhizomes can dry out in the sun. And do not bury the rhizomes under the dirt or mulch them. Irises can survive the summer with very little water, although their will yellow and turn brown. They’ll come back again in the fall.
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