Are Irises Perennials?

Are Irises Perennials that Bloom Year After Year?

Bringing flashes of gem-like color to the spring garden, the graceful blooms of irises are a favorite with gardeners and flower arrangers alike. Irises come in a dazzling spectrum of shades ranging from blue, yellow and purple to white, bronze, pink and red. Dutch and dwarf irises are amongst the easiest of spring bulbs spring bulbs to grow, but a question we’re often asked is are irises perennial? 

 

Are Irises Perennials? Dwarf Iris

Dwarf irises are amongst the earliest spring bulbs to bloom and are perennial. They naturalize well in a sunny, well-drained spot. Whether planted in drifts under trees or grouped in beds and borders, dwarf irises will form a natural-looking clump after a few years. After the rich blue blooms with their butterfly-like markings have faded, remove them. The foliage will continue to grow through the summer. If the plants stop blooming, lift the bulbs and divide them before replanting for a glorious display next season.

 

 Are Irises Perennials? Dutch Iris

Dutch irises will also naturalize and bloom again the following spring. Some gardeners prefer to treat them as annuals and plant fresh bulbs every fall but if the iris bulbs are happy in a sunny, well-drained spot, they will bloom for many years. Remove the blooms as they fade and the foliage will continue to grow through the summer, providing nutrition for next year’s bloom. Tidy up the shriveled stems and leaves in the fall and you’ll be rewarded with more blooms the following spring. 

 

Are Irises Perennials? Irises Grown in Pots 

Irises grown in pots are likely planted more densely and are under more stress than they would be if planted in the garden and this is why they are less likely to bloom again the following season. It’s best to discard them after blooming and choose fresh bulbs to plant in the fall.

Now that you know the answer to the question of whether irises are perennials, we hope you’re inspired to include some in your spring garden. Discover our customers’ favorites plus some exotic new varieties in our iris collection.

 

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