HOW TO GROW IRIS RETICULATA




Iris reticulata species and cultivars are one of the most beautiful of all the early flowering bulbs. Perfectly hardy, and exquisitely flowered, these small bulbous plants may only grow to about six inches high but their strikingly coloured blooms more than make up for their lack of size.

You can purchase Iris reticulata as flowering pot grown plants early in the spring, but you will get more for your money if you buy them as pre-pack bulbs in the autumn. When buying as dry bulbs they can be planted in clumps 2-3 inches deep in September or October.

They are best grown in a light, well-drained soil, and will look stunning set in the pockets of a rock or gravel garden. Avoid planting Iris reticulata in heavy soils as they will need the additional drainage to survive over the winter. Get them too wet and they may not be around to come up the following year.

When growing in containers or pots, plant six bulbs in a five inch pot, one inch deep using a good quality compost such as John Innes No. 3.

After flowering, feed with a liquid soluble fertilizer every week or so. This will help to ensure that the resulting divided bulbs are large enough to flower the following spring.

If you are growing Iris reticulata in containers or pots avoid the temptation of bringing them into the warmth of a protected environment in an attempt to bring them into bloom earlier. The chances are the the bulbs will dry out before coming into flower and so it is always best to just let nature take its course.

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