12 Interesting Facts About Iris Flowers

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Interesting Facts About Iris Flowers

Irises are some of my favourite flowers. I love their range of colours and the shape of their flowers. I cannot see irises without thinking, “Van Gogh”. The flowers always seem to be where you least expect them and with their blue-green foliage they give a welcome variation in colour in the garden. It is unusual to have blue and yellow flowers in July, so they are a contrast to all the pinks, reds and whites that are so common in early summer.

Interesting Facts About Iris Flowers

Irises are very interesting plants for any gardener. Here are a few interesting facts:

  1. Although most people talk about Iris bulbs they are really iris rhizomes
  2. Iris flowers increase each year by the rhizomes sending out new shoots. This is called vegetative reproduction. Every flower will be identical because the rhizomes are all genetically identical
  3. Iris plants can be grown from seed
  4. You can breed your own irises. All you need is an artist’s paintbrush. Brush the pollen from one flower onto the sticky stigma of a different flower. Wait until the petals fall off and the swollen ovary at the base of the flower is brittle and ready to burst open. Remove the seeds and sow outside in a window trough about 2in apart. Leave them outside over the winter. Replant in spring and watch them grow
  5. Irises make beautiful cut flowers

Interesting Facts About Iris Flowers

  1. Iris bulbs (rhizomes) should have their tops exposed to the sun or they will rot
  2. Never mulch iris plants
  3. Irises will survive in Scotland, and all other parts of UK and Ireland
  4. Irises flower best in full sun or dappled shade
  5. Iris clumps can be divided every three or four years to give you more plants
  6. Individual iris plants should be planted two feet apart to allow for the spread of each clump
  7. If you start off with six iris bulbs this year and you breed your own each year for ten years you will have over a million unique iris plants

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