Late Summer Iris Planting & Care

by Amanda

Late summer is not only the best time to plant Bearded Iris for a jump start on spring growth, but also the time to care for your existing Iris by trimming old foliage back and, if mature enough, dividing and re-planting (or giving away to friends and neighbors)! Here are a few tips on planting and care to get you busy in the garden!

Planting New Irises

There are two different planting cycles for Bearded Iris – spring and fall. Typically, Bearded Iris are planted as rhizomes in the fall and potted plants in the spring. We have over 40 varieties of Bearded Iris rhizomes available to plant now. The benefit of planting Bearded Iris in late summer is to establish their roots before winter, giving them a jump start on growth in the spring. This results in the plants most likely blooming in their first year. The extra growth on top of summer-planted rhizomes is from last season; it can either be kept on or clipped off, it does not affect the actual growth of the plant.

Caring for/Dividing Existing Plants

Late Summer is the best time to care for and divide your existing Irises; their life cycle is at a point where they can be tended to, up-rooted, divided and re-planted. You will notice old foliage starting to wilt from the heat (especially this year!) – This foliage should be trimmed back regardless if you are planning to divide or not. Trimming also helps when dividing iris because it helps keep the moisture of the plant in the root system, not the foliage.

Dividing your Iris is fairly simple. Carefully dig the mature Iris up, making sure not damage any of the root systems. Cut each rhizome vertically with a sterile knife and be sure that each faction has at least 2-3 fans. If possible, try dusting the freshly-divided rhizomes with organic fungicide to prevent root rot or bores. Dig a shallow hole and spread roots out; make sure to leave the rhizome partially exposed (do not bury it completely) and water well.

Bearded Iris are not only the epitome of elegance and grace, but are the true backbone of the perennial garden and are extremely easy to grow and care for, especially in late summer.

Happy Gardening!

Shop Bearded Iris

  1. Deschutes Bearded Iris, Iris germanica Deschutes

    Deschutes Bearded Iris casts a glow to harmonize and enhance the perennial garden. Ruffled twilight blue petals and sky-blue beards create a calm, serene presence in the late spring ...

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    $7.99 Sale $5.99
    Per Bag of 1
    Deschutes Bearded Iris casts a glow to harmonize and enhance the perennial garden. Ruffled twilight blue petals and sky-blue beards create a calm, serene presence in the late spring garden. Prolific blooms with up to 7 flowers per stalk will add a unique color to your garden and cut flower arrangements. A deer and rabbit resistant and drought tolerant perennial. (Iris germanica)
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  2. On Deck Reblooming Bearded Iris, Iris germanica On Deck

    'On Deck' Reblooming Bearded Iris stands out with vividly contrasting blooms. Ruffled white standards are accented with hints of gold, and falls streaked with cobalt blue. This rebl...

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    $9.32 Sale $6.99
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    'On Deck' Reblooming Bearded Iris stands out with vividly contrasting blooms. Ruffled white standards are accented with hints of gold, and falls streaked with cobalt blue. This reblooming variety opens in late spring, with a repeat performance 'On Deck' in late summer or fall. A low maintenance beauty with upright lancelike foliage for added texture after flowers fade. (Iris germanica)
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  3. Reblooming Bearded Iris Collection

    Our Reblooming Bearded Iris Collection will have you daydreaming of wide blue skies and fluffy white clouds. Spring days can fly by quickly, so you'll be pleasantly surprised when al...

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    As low as $46.66 Sale $34.99
    Per Collection of 5
    Our Reblooming Bearded Iris Collection will have you daydreaming of wide blue skies and fluffy white clouds. Spring days can fly by quickly, so you'll be pleasantly surprised when all 5 varieties rebloom, continuing their magic through summer into early fall! Enjoy a harmonious palette of indigo, pale purple, blue violet, with bright white and hints of yellow. These are perfect for an easygoing garden and long-lasting cut flower arrangements. Collection of 5 or 15 bulbs. (Iris germanica)
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  4. Dangerous Moon Bearded Iris, Blank and Lavender

    Dangerous Mood Bearded Iris is a blue-lovers delight. Deep velvet-blue ruffled falls (downward petals) are lit by three upright petals (standards) of pure white blushed with indigo b...

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    Dangerous Mood Bearded Iris Dangerous Mood Bearded Iris Iris germanica Dangerous Mood
    $7.99 Sale $5.99
    Per Bag of 1
    Dangerous Mood Bearded Iris is a blue-lovers delight. Deep velvet-blue ruffled falls (downward petals) are lit by three upright petals (standards) of pure white blushed with indigo blue. The light lingers over these stately, sultry flowers, making them a striking focal point in the mid-to-late spring garden. Deer and rabbit resistant. (Iris germanica)
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