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[iris-talk] CULT: American Growing Conditions

From: "Jeff and Carolyn Walters" <cwalters@digitalpla.net>

From: Jan Jacobsen 
A Question to American iris growers: I know of course there is great
different in climate in your continent but what represent the problem of
growing iris in the north contrary to the south.? 


As you say, North America is a large area with a great diversity of climate
and growing conditions. In general, I would say that differences between
East and West may be as significant as those between North and South when
it comes to growing irises.

As a broad generalization, the humid conditions and acid soils of the East
are better adapted for growing Japanese and Louisiana irises. The more arid
conditions, particularly in the summer, and the neutral to alkaline soils
make the West better suited for growing bulbous irises and Arils, and may
give some advantages with Arilbreds and bearded irises in general. Also,
the iris borer is a major challenge to iris growers in the East, but does
not occur in the West.

As for differences between North and South, it is difficult to grow most
bearded irises and Siberians in the Gulf Coast region of the Southeast or
the hot desert regions of the Southwest, while more tender species, such as
I. unguicularis or I. japonica cannot survive in the colder winter areas of
the North. Botrytis rot is a significant problem in cold winter areas,
while fungal crown rot seems to be more of a Southern problem. In the
eastern half of the Continent, iris borers are much more prevalent in the
North than in the South.

As with any generalizations, there are probably many exceptions tht can be
offered to every comment I have made - and dedicated iris folk in all parts
of the continent seem to be able to find ways to grow an amazing variety of
irises successfully regardless of local conditions.

Jeff Walters in northern Utah  (USDA Zone 4, Sunset Zone 2)

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