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Re: Cutting back fans?

Dennis writes

:I find it interesting that when I was a child, one of the many summer
:task was to cut back iris fans to 6", ALL of them.  I can never recall
:many problems with her iris.

The conventional wisdom, as I think became clear from postings to the list,
is to not cut back the foliage while it is growing. Yet, of course, irises
are rugged creatures and you will hear _many_ stories of irises brutally
cut back during the growing seasons and showing no apparent harm from the
act. A similar situation exists regarding transplant time. The conventional
wisdom is to divide in the summer, when the rhizomes have had a couple months
to ripen after bloom but before fall growth begins. Yet, of course, you will
hear _many_ stories of people who transplant at other times of the year
(except midwinter) with no apparent ill effect.

I think in both cases, the conventional wisdom constitutes the "best"
recommendation (in most circumstances), but is not really a cultural
imperative. If your circumstances are unusual (strange climate, strange
diseases, etc.), it's worth considering variations on the conventional


Tom Tadfor Little         tlittle@lanl.gov  -or-  telp@Rt66.com
technical writer/editor   Los Alamos National Laboratory
Telperion Productions     http://www.rt66.com/~telp/

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