The Bearded Iris is part of a family comprising some 300 species most of which are hardy throughout
the U.S. There are varieties to suit all types of soil and light conditions. Some types bloom in early spring while
others make their show through the summer. There are also repeat-blooming types which, as their name suggests,
flower a second time in late summer and early fall.
Dwarf Irises.These irises grow 4-6 inches tall and produce blue, yellow or purple flowers in
early spring. They require a well drained soil in full sun or partial shade and are hardy in USDA zones 4-9.
Bearded Irises. This type covers a wide range of size and color. Height varies from 8 inches
for the dwarf bearded iris to 40 inches for the tall bearded. The flowers are pink, yellow, blue, purple and even a
dark burgandy blooming in early summer with some reblooming types flowering again in late summer and early fall.
Bearded irises need well drained soil in full sun. Hardy in zones 3-9.
Siberian Irises.These plants grow two to four feet tall and thrive in cool wet conditions.
The flowers are mostly blue, white and violet borne in late spring and early summer. Hardy in zones 3-9.
Louisiana Irises.This type are true water lovers but will also grow well in acidic soils.
Two to four feet tall and with a wide range of colors, these irises can be grown in zones 5-9.
Japanese Irises.These irises also enjoy wet soils and can even be planted partially
submerged in the margins of your garden pond. Growing two to three feet tall with white to lavender colored blooms
some measuring up to six inches across, Japanese irises make a bold statement in early to mid summer. Hardy in
Dutch hybrids.This type are often grown as annuals and make good cut flowers. Height varies
from eighteen inches to two feet with Orchid-like flowers blooming from late spring to early summer. This group of
irises has an especially wide range of colors and patterns and is hardy in zones 5-9.
For more information on the bearded iris and all the other iris types including full instructions on planting
and cultivation visit Dutch Gardens
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