Forum home Plants

Iris rhizome or plant?

Hello all on this very wet day, I would like to plant some irises for flowering next year.  I already have some in the garden that were here when we moved in (they're not reticularta or unguicularis, I think they're called sibirica? They're not bearded but have thick grey/green leaves and stand about 30-45cm tall).  I know I can divide them but I don't have many and I'd like to fill an empty space.  Does anyone know if I should be buying rhizomes? And if so, when? I did see one plant still in leaf in a garden centre this week but it was £4 for the one plant.  I haven't seen any more for sale so I thought maybe this was the wrong time to buy? But I also can't find the rhizomes available. Am I looking at completely the wrong time of year or am I just looking in the wrong places.  Many thanks jandh


  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 26,996

    Iris sibirica don't have rhizomes like bearded iris, they have roots that can be divided. But don't try and break them up into very small divisions or they'll take ages to get going again. 

    £4 doesn't sound too bad to me or wait and buy them in growth in spring.

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • Hi nut, I'm not sure mine are sibirica, I just know what reticularta and unguicularis look like and they're not those.  Mine look like bearded iris without the frilly edges.  They have thick rhizomes that sit on the soil to bake in the sun.  I divided some last year but don't have enough to do it again (and shouldn't really do it again so soon anyway).  So I thought to buy more but I need about 10-15. The garden centre only had 2 for sale and I can't find rhizomes so I just wondered if I was looking at the wrong time? Can you even buy the rhizomes? Or do I have to buy plants in leaf next Spring?

  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Posts: 35,835

    Hi jandh I think you may have to buy plants. Could yours be Iris ensata?

    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • Hi Ladybird, could be, looking at the pics online.  Do people not buy the rhizomes then like we do with bulbs/corms etc?  If that's the case then it looks like Spring is the right time like Nut said.  I shall look online to see if I can get them a bit cheaper.  Many thanks

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 26,996

    I've never seen loose rhizomes for sale in the way that bulbs are sold, always in pots. In pots any time is the right time to buy them. They've always got live roots (unlike bulbs which have a dormant season with no active roots)

    Yours aren't sibirica, 

    There are hundreds of different bearded irises, yours will be one of them I'm sure.

    Kelways have some nice ones, bit pricey. and Seagate Irises   ditto

    Last edited: 03 September 2016 15:34:52

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • Thanks Nut, I shall have a browse onlineimage

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 26,996

    You could probably get a lot cheaper on ebay plants

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • image

Sign In or Register to comment.