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IRIS 'Mesmerizer'

Image of Iris 'Mesmerizer'

James Burghardt



Botanical Name

IRIS 'Mesmerizer'

Plant Common Name

Mesmerizer Iris, Tall Bearded Iris

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

With ruffled snow-white flowers, the Mesmerizer bearded iris is not only visually spectacular, but perhaps is a perfect emblem for winter or a wedding! This hybrid herbaceous perennial was developed by Monty Byers and released in the early 1990s. It received multiple awards, including the Wister Medal in 2000 from the American Iris Society as well as the American Dykes Medal in 2002, the highest accolade awarded by the British Iris Society for American-bred irises.

The distinctively shaped flowers of tall bearded iris appear on strong stems emerging from fans of light blue-green, sword-shaped foliage. The stems branch and carry numerous plump flower buds in mid-spring. Each blossom comprises three upright petals called “standards” and three drooping tepals (petal-like sepals), referred to as “falls.” On 'Mesmerizer', all petals are silvery snow white. Fuzzy orangish pads called “beards” are located at the base or shoulder of the falls. There's a unique feature on this cultivar: at the end of each of the three beards, a ruffled white petaloid appears and has a white pompon at its tip. The blooms are pollinated by bees and make striking cut flowers, with each blossom lasting one to three days before shriveling up.

Bearded irises are tough, adaptable perennials which prosper in full sun to light shade and fertile, well-drained soils. Plant them with the tops of their slowly spreading, fleshy rhizomes exposed to the air. In hot summer climates, dappled shade in the afternoon is recommended. After three to five years, lift and divide the rhizomes and replant in late summer if the plants become too large or crowded. These rewarding, long-lived irises deserve a prominent spot in the mixed flower border or foundation bed.


  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 9

  • Sunset Zone

    1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type


  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    18"-36" / 45.7cm - 91.4cm

  • Width

    18"-24" / 45.7cm - 61.0cm

  • Native To

    Hybrid Origin

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate


  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit


  • Seasonal Interest


Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest


  • Flower Color

    White, Silver

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Light Green, Blue Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Light Green, Blue Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Light Green, Blue Green

  • Fragrant Flowers


  • Fragrant Fruit


  • Fragrant Foliage


  • Bark or Stem Fragrant


  • Flower Petal Number


  • Repeat Bloomer


  • Showy Fruit


  • Edible Fruit


  • Showy Foliage


  • Foliage Texture


  • Foliage Sheen


  • Evergreen


  • Showy Bark


Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Cutflower, Foundation, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns


  • Invasive


  • Self-Sowing