Siberian Iris Planting Guide

Pretty, Prolific and Easy
Looking for pretty irises, ones that bloom abundantly and are easy? You've found them. With needs that are easily met - sunshine, moderate to generous amounts of moisture and soil that has a bit of humus - these spring bloomers will handle the cold of the upper Midwest and the heat of the South Central states with ease. And they'll grow into a giant clump over several seasons, allowing you to divide and move your irises to other parts of the garden or share with gardening friends. If you haven't tried these yet, slip a half dozen into that little bare spot you keep thinking about filling. Come spring, you'll have beautiful flowers that won't need spraying, deadheading, staking or fussing of any sort. Nice, huh?
PLANTING
DEPTH

1" Inches

WATER
QUANTITY

Moderate water during active growth

SUNLIGHT
QUANTITY

Full sun to partial shade

PLANTING
PROXIMITY

10-12" Inches Between
Planting

Outdoor Beds
  1. Find a location where the soil has an average amount of moisture, or in warmer areas it can even be a bit wet like on the edge of a pond. Siberian irises like soil that has some humus, so add some compost, decomposed manure or leaf mold if your soil is lean or sandy side. These plants struggle in the hot, dry climates of the desert Southwest.
  2. Site your iris where they will get full day sun. While they will grow in partial shade, blooms will be more plentiful with stronger light.
  3. Your irises will be shipped with green leaf fans and all the soil washed from the roots, so you won't risk introducing any soil-borne diseases into your garden. Also, the plant is lighter and cleaner to ship this way. Soak the roots and rhizomes in water overnight prior to planting.
  4. Tuck each plant, with the roots fanned slightly and pointing downwards, into a hole 3-5" deep. The junction point between the fan and the roots should be 1-2" below soil level. Space about 12-15" apart and pat the soil firmly around the plant. To retain moisture and prevent winter heaving, mulch your irises after planting.
  5. After planting, water well to settle the soil around the bulbs. Keep well watered until established; about 1-1.5" of water per week is a good guide. In warmer climates foliage will form in the autumn, winter will bring taller growth and flowers will develop in the spring. In colder regions foliage and flowers wait until winter’s cold has passed and develop in the spring.
  6. When in bloom, feel free to cut iris flowers for bouquets. This will not hurt your plants, so snip away.
  7. After blooming has finished for the season leave the foliage in place; don’t cut it off. The leaves will provide a strong vertical design element in the garden while they gather sunlight and nourishment for next year’s show. Water as needed during active growth periods.
  8. As cooler weather arrives in the fall, iris leaves may yellow and die back as the plant slips into dormancy. Foliage can be removed at this point. Your iris will rest for a few months before beginning the next growing cycle. In warm regions, iris foliage may stay green year round.

Pots, Barrels, Tubs & Urns
  1. Fill your containers with good quality, well-drained soil. Almost any commercially available potting medium will work fine. Make sure there are adequate drainage holes; Siberian iris bulbs must not sit in water logged soil or they will rot. Siberian iris plants are rather tall and slim so we recommend planting them in large containers.
  2. Site your containers where they will get full day sun. While Siberian iris will grow in partial shade, blooms will be more plentiful with stronger light.
  3. Your irises will be shipped with green leaf fans and all the soil washed from the roots, so you won't risk introducing any soil-borne diseases into your garden. Also, the plant is lighter and cleaner to ship this way. Soak the roots and rhizomes in water overnight prior to planting.
  4. Tuck each plant, with the roots fanned slightly and pointing downwards, into a hole 3-5" deep. The junction point between the fan and the roots should be 1-2" below soil level. Space about 8-12" apart and pat the soil firmly around the plant. To retain moisture and prevent winter heaving, mulch your irises after planting.
  5. After planting, water well to settle the soil around the bulbs. Keep well watered until established; about 1-2" of water per week is a good guide. In warmer climates foliage will form in the autumn, winter will bring taller growth and flowers will develop in the spring. In colder regions foliage and flowers wait until winter’s cold has passed and develop in the spring.
  6. When in bloom, feel free to cut iris flowers for bouquets. This will not hurt your plants, so snip away.
  7. After blooming has finished for the season leave the foliage in place; don’t cut it off. The leaves will provide a strong vertical design element in the garden while they gather sunlight and nourishment for next year’s show. Water as needed during active growth periods.
  8. As cooler weather arrives in the fall, iris leaves may yellow and die back as the plant slips into dormancy. Foliage can be removed at this point. Your iris will rest for a few months before beginning the next growing cycle. In warm regions, iris foliage may stay green year round.