A bearded iris
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Things To Do In Fall For Thriving Iris Plants All Year Long
In the fall, the first thing to do to clean up your German irises is to deadhead the flower stems and trim the leaves, especially if they have started to turn brown or yellow.
If your irises look bedraggled and overcrowded or aren't blooming as well as they used to, consider dividing them. German irises must be divided every two to three years.
Simply dig them up, trim any soft or rotted parts, and clean off any weeds or debris clinging to them. When replanting, determine if your irises are happy in their original place.
Irises need plenty of sun to bloom and room to spread, so move them to where they won't be easily overcrowded. Planting them in well-drained soil also decreases damp rot problems.
To replant your irises, dig a hole about four inches deep, hold the rhizome with the roots dangling down, fill in the soil, and pat it down so a bit of the rhizome is exposed.
The sun-exposed rhizome helps flower buds form and provides necessary nutrients. If you have irises that have not bloomed, they may be buried too deep, so divide and replant them.
They don't really need winter protection, but a light layer of pine straw laid over them can help protect them from cold winds if temperatures plummet.
Be sure to divide and replant irises between late summer and early autumn to give them plenty of time to settle into their new space before winter.