Helping You Become a More Successful Gardener
German iris is, in part, one genetic parent to the tens of thousands of tall bearded iris varieties that grace our gardens every mid-spring to early summer. This species is native to Europe, and colonists and immigrants carried this tried-and-true garden flower around the temperate world over the past few centuries.
This old-fashioned perennial has basal clusters of long, sword-shaped, sea green leaves that spread apart like fans. The large, lavender-blue flowers are born on strong, tall, leafless stalks. Like all bearded irises, the German iris flower comprises three distinct upright petals (standards) and three distinct downward facing petals (falls) that have are lined with fuzzy "beards" at their bases. The beards are actually designed to draw in pollinators, particularly bees. German iris has a sweet fragrance and makes a pretty, short-lived cutflower.
German iris does best in full sun and needs fertile, well-drained soil. Soils that are soggy or lack organic matter or nutrients are recipe for disaster. It's susceptible to an array of pests and diseases, most notably iris borer and various fungal root rots, which attack their enormous, thick fleshy rhizomes. Enjoy these perennials in cottage gardens and mixed perennial borders. Dig up and divide the plant clumps every three to five years to renew their vigor and flowering displays.
8 - 1
3 - 9
1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23
Full Sun, Partial Sun
28"-36" / 71.1cm - 91.4cm
18"-24" / 45.7cm - 61.0cm
Spring, Late Spring, Early Summer
Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline
Clay, Loam, Sand
Lavender, Blue Violet
Green, Sea Green
Cutflower, Feature Plant, Mixed Border
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