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Re:Cult: Spring Rot


I'm cleaning up my spring soft rot right now, where garden has just gotten warm enough to do some work.
This is quite common here. I'm replanting heaved plants( almost all of plants moved last year). At the same time checking for soft rot. It starts in the central fan. A bit of pressure around top and cleaning off of dead leaves reveals problem. Solution involves surgery to tip, removing damaged tip and surrounding infected tissue. A tablespoon with sharpened edge makes a great tool. Severe surgery is required. Don't remove plant from the ground. Leave scapped surface exposed to air, and sun. Scaped tissue needs to be treated with an antiseptic/cauterizing agent. Various substances work. I prefere laundry bleach mixed with equal part of water, sprayed on wound. Powdered sulpher , lysol. Comet or equal sink cleaner works, and some prefer liqid antibacterial hand soap. The key issue is early detection and treatment.
A preventive is to avoid heavy nitrogen in fertilizer, especially late in season, as this increased foliage and rhizome is softer and more susceptible to soft rot. As you look around garden, you may notice estasblished older clumps are less susceptible to this problem. very green plants with lots of foliage are more susceptable.

Chuck Chapman Guelph Ontario, Canada First reticulata are in bloom, just in bloom.

Date: Mon, 3 Apr 2006 06:26:56 -0700 (PDT)
From: Matthew Booker <apetala2@yahoo.com>
Subject: [iris] TB: Rot Question

I am a new iris-grower, and I planted about 40 or so
varieties in my garden late last summer. This spring,
I noticed that the following are either dead or dying:

Fogbound
Collete
Mother's Little Helper
Megabucks
Banana Frappe

They all have the same symptoms. They had started to
put out shoots, then the main shoot/fan whithered and
then the side shoots/fans started die usually browning
at the base first and then dying. If I gently press on
the top of the rhizome, I can feel that it's soft.
Irises that do not have these symptoms feel firm. I
haven't detected any smell, but they're clearly have
rot.

All my irises (both those w/ symptoms and w/o) started
to grow early this February because of the mild winter
weather. Then, we had very cold, below normal weather
for the rest of February and much of March. I suspect
that may have to do with the problem, but I am not
sure. I have irises w/ symptoms and w/o in the same
beds, so it's not an obviously location-centric
problem.

Any thoughts/ideas/advice?

- -Matt
Eastern Mass, Zone 6


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