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Re: Rhizome and soft rot

From: John I Jones <jijones9@pacbell.net>

Charmaine wrote:
> Have had problems with soft and rhizome rot.
> Here in Queensland Australia I guess it is the rainfall and humidity.
> I swore I would never buy another TB rhizome.
> Tried the dusting of dolomite aon and around the rhhizomes.
> Magic a notable improvement in a week.
> Dwarfs have always seemed to grow and multiply here.
> The rot has just dried up and the rhizomes have had a kick start and are
> mutiply well. Thanks for the tip which I saw on the archives or the list.
> I have started to lightly mulch with lucerne or alpha hay.


I don't know what kind of weather you have where you are, but if you are
having rot problems I infer that it is somewhat warm and muggy. 

One of the best ways to help prevent rot is to make sure your rhizomes
are not planted too deeply so that the top side of the rz is exposed to
the sun. Plant them far enough apart from themselves and any other plant
so they get good air curculation.

Mulching them is probably not a good idea unless you need to do that for
freeze/thaw heaving problems, and then definitely not until the weather
cools significantly. Mulching will just trap moisture and make the rot worse.

Dolomite (gypsum) is a good application if, as it has here in the US, it
has 16% or so sulphur - a good antibacterial agent. A bleach solution is
also a good treatment.

If you find rot, dig out all the pulpy mess with a spoon or some such,
dose it with a Clorox solution (anything from 50-50 to straight bleach),
rub some gypsum on the exposed cut, and leave it exposed to the air to dry.

Just my opinion, perhaps someone from our southern tier (US) can chime in.

John                     | "There be dragons here"
                         |  Annotation used by ancient cartographers
                         |  to indicate the edge of the known world.

USDA zone 8/9 (coastal, bay) 
Fremont, California, USA 
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President, Westbay Iris Society
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AIS Special Committee for Electronic Member Services

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