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Re: CULT: Iris Borers

  • Subject: Re: [iris-talk] CULT: Iris Borers
  • From: Dennis Kramb <dkramb@badbear.com>
  • Date: Thu, 9 Aug 2001 19:07:58 -0400

>On Tue, 7 Aug 2001, vince lewonski wrote:
>>     V. sez:
>>     Having been vigilant in cleaning up all dead leaves and
>>  keeping the garden weed-free going into winter, I can
>>  categorically state that this WILL NOT eliminate borers. I
>>  Vince Lewonski
>>  vincelewonski@yahoo.com
>>  Secane, Pennsylvania, USA Zone 6b
>Vince & all,
>Can anyone tell me how far down the fans should be cut to get rid of
>borer eggs ie how short should the "haircut" be? Dennis do you have any
>suggestions? Does the mother moth lay her eggs closer to the tops of the
>iris leaves or the bottoms?
>I always assumed the eggs were laid close to the bottom of the fans so
>the new little caterpillars would be closer to the rhizome.
>  --
>Diana Louis <dlouis@dynamicro.on.ca>

I cut them about 2 inches the ground.  Regarding what Vince said 
about October/November rebloomers, I just wait till those fans are 
done reblooming before I hack 'em back.  Usually we get a hard frost 
and that kills them anyway (the blooms, not the plants).  This year I 
only found 1 borer out of 500+ clumps of irises.  It was a newly 
acquired iris from last season.  I don't trim new ones back since 
they're already hacked back when they arrive in the summer.

It would be beneficial to have a lot of people in borer country 
experiment with this technique to accumulate some data on just how 
effective it is.  This year I'm going to cut each row at different 
heights to see if I can learn just how far from the ground the eggs 
are laid.
Dennis Kramb; dkramb@badbear.com
Cincinnati, Ohio USA; USDA Zone 6

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