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Iris plants

bulkerbbulkerb Posts: 258
I have been tasked with lifting and dividing hundreds of iris rhizomes it is likely they have never been divided before.
Some of them are only an inch long after discarding the old flesh sshould i leave more on. Will the small ones with only a couple of routes survive and lastly there living location is a pergola shaded by Wisteria and climbing roses. I suspect when they were planted the wisteria and roses were only small so providing little or no shade at all now of courses it is the complete opposite  what would you advise me to tell the boss . I think dig them all up and start again else where thanks as always Lester 
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Posts

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,605
    are we dealing with iris germanica?
    Devon.
  • bulkerbbulkerb Posts: 258
    Bearded iris purple and white about 3 feet high
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,605
    It sounds like they're seriously overcrowded and long overdue being split. 
    They're best in full sun, so underneath a pergola isn't ideal.
    If they're really small, I'd plant them somewhere like a patch of a veg garden to grow on and bulk up. It's hard to be precise without seeing what you're dealing with, but it sounds like if you don't do something, they're just going to keep deteriorating so you really have to do it , or lose it.
    Image result for iris germanica rhizomes
    this is the sort of size you need.
    Be aware, it's likely to be a year of two before they're back to full flowering size.
    Devon.
  • bulkerbbulkerb Posts: 258
  • bulkerbbulkerb Posts: 258
    These are some of the rhizomes and the location of the plants
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 27,588
    Those look viable to me but, as Hosta says, need to be grown on somewhere sunny to mature to flowering size, either in a new sunny bed or in a spare bit of land until they're ready for re-planting in a sunny place.   

    Find something else for under the pergola.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,605
    I'd cut back the long one to about 10cm ( just where the roots stop ) and discard the rest.
    Beautiful pergola. Hostas would look fabulous under there. Just a thought.
    Devon.
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 19,902
    I was just thinking Hostas there, Hellebores ok when they’re flowering but I don’t like them when they’re just green.  I think they are suited to a woodland plot. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 27,588
    Masses of spring daffs and some carefully chosen hellebores followed by hostas to hide the fading daff foliage and contrast beautifully with the hellebore foliage.  Just need something for autumn now.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • bulkerbbulkerb Posts: 258
    Just to say thanks for advice i am going to try the doddington method to save time and effort.
    and we do have hostas helebores and lilly of the valley in the pergola already . Doddington looks like a great option for me to try cheers Lester  
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