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Species iris for beginners


We have two wild stands of Iris verna on our property that we have
discovered so far. Both have reliablly bloomed every year in partial to near
full shade. Our soil is very fine sandy loam, very acid (<4.5pH). They seem
to require less water than Iris cristata. One is located on the top of a
hill under an oak tree (very dry in summer), the other halfway down a hill
also under an oak tree but gets more sun and water.

Beth Matney <bmatney@mail.snider.net>
central Arkansas USDA zone 7b

>Rodney Barton's problems with I. verna are understandable.  About 10 years
>ago I obtained several large clumps of this iris from a supplier of native
>plants in North Carolina.  Those planted in clay soil (in November)
>survived the winter, bloomed and then died.  Those planted (also in
>November) in sandy, strongly acid soil among azaleas growing under mature
>pines are still thriving today without any further attention.  Reading
>reinforces the idea that an acid soil  of light texture is needed.  Verna
>is a delightful little iris blooming about the same time as cristata, but
>with more typical iris form and generally looking bluer.  There is a strong
>range signal but no crest; it's usually placed in its own section, Vernae.

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