Japanese Iris

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Back by popular demand today, more pictures less chatter.

All the iris in these photos are Japanese iris, Iris ensata. All are growing in shallow water in the ponds in my garden, although they will grow nicely in the ground also.dsc00490

Japanese iris are said to be somewhat difficult to grow, but in my ponds they are carefree and troublefree. The others that I’ve planted in a damp swale seem to do fine without any attention either. The common thread seems to be an abundance of water.

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Unfortunately, I don’t know any of the iris varieties in my garden to make specific recommendations, except the variegated Japanese iris. All are quite beautiful in flower, so you can’t go wrong with any.

Japanese iris make a wonderful vertical accent in a pond. I grow mine directly in pockets of small gravel between boulders rather than in pots, with no soil except the silt that accumulates in the gravel. They are quite undemanding as a pond plant except to clean up the dead foliage at the start of the Spring.dsc00512

I have heard from others that they will spread, but I have had them planted for five years or more and they have not escaped from the small pocket they were planted in. The clump gets a bit larger every year.

I don’t grow other iris varieties, though I have grown Louisiana iris in the past. I thought that the foliage was a bit thin in comparison, so it was not quite as good when not in bloom.

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