Monday, October 24, 2016

Time to plant Dutch Iris


Dutch Iris is among the earliest of the spring blooming bulbs, often emerging through the snows of late winter. The striking colors of Dutch Iris are a sure sign spring is on its way. Fall is the best time to plant Dutch Iris and right now, you'll find these bulbs in convenient packages, ready to take home and plant. Dutch Iris will do best when planted in full sun and in well-drained soils.
To improve your soil, plan to add 2" or 3" of compost or peat moss to the soil in the existing bed and mix it in thoroughly.
While you're at it, work in some Dutch Bulb Food, at the rate of 4 cups per 50 square feet. Plant your Dutch Iris bulbs about 4" deep. After planting, water the bed thoroughly.  Your bulbs will start rooting right away. As the temperatures cool down, Dutch Iris will go dormant. When the soil warms up in the spring, your bulbs will wake up and begin to grow and bloom. Another way to enjoy Dutch Iris is to force them indoors. Forcing bulbs is a way to accelerate the blooms by cooling the bulb off indoors. Like most fall bulbs, Dutch Iris need a "cooling off" period before they will bloom. In this case, the cooling period is about eight weeks. You can use any container to plant your bulbs as long as it has drainage.
Fill the pot with potting soil, 
then place your bulbs closely together in the pot
and cover with potting soil.  Bulbs need to be chilled for eight weeks at 35 to 45 degrees F. You can use an unheated basement or crawl space or the refrigerator if you have space. After the bulbs have chilled for eight weeks, move them to a warm, sunny location and water regularly. You'll soon see the bulbs push up through the dirt and start to bloom. For more blooms through the winter, start several bulb pots a couple of weeks apart. This is a great way to add indoor color to the holidays. Some popular Dutch Iris available now include
Dwarf Iris Iris histrioides ʹKatherine Hodgkinʹ is among the shorter Dutch Iris at 6ʺ. Katherine Hodgkin also blooms earliest, emerging in early spring.
White Wedgewood hollandia blooms in mid-spring and grows to about 24" tall.
Dutch Iris Iris hollandia ʹMauve Queenʹ blooms late spring and grows to about 18ʺ.
Dutch Iris hollandia ʹGolden Beautyʹ blooms later in spring and gets about 24ʺ high.
Dutch iris Iris hollandia ʹBlue Ribbonʹ late spring bloomer 24ʺ high.   Dutch Iris bulbs are a great choice to add color to your garden in from early spring on and these hardy bulbs will multiply and spread naturally, giving you spring color for many seasons to come.

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