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I'm gonna say it was six years ago when I planted on iris bulb in the bed below my bay window. Even though it grew and spread the year it was planted and the next year too, I didn't get a flower until the third year. And then it went nuts. It grew and spread and grew until irises were laying on the asphalt in front of the bed and were being stepped on.

My neighbor told me I should separate them. Members of this gardening community advised separating but I resisted because I was afraid I'd get no flowers ever again. It took them being trampled on for me to come to my senses and see that the plant was too big, unwieldy and crowded. Last fall me and The Boy dug it up, chopped it into many, many pieces, gave the majority of them away and planted the old, original root (I figured we keep two of the younger pieces but The Boy insisted on keeping the original and since he was doing most of the physical labor. . .)and a younger piece.

I was not expecting many flowers this year and when one bloomed, I was figured I came out ahead. And then this happened-- this is the plant today:

Sea of Iris

It just seems so much happier, if a plant can be described as happy. And so am I.

Comments

( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
squid_ink
May. 3rd, 2012 06:46 pm (UTC)
people can tell you many things but some things ... you just gotta work it out for yourself

I've been there many times.

the iris are lovely so glad things worked out! they do look happy
wolfsilveroak
May. 3rd, 2012 07:12 pm (UTC)
I've had this happen, and by this same token, had the opposite happen as well.}:P

One of the Iris rhizomes I planted 4 years ago went gwith blooming for the very first time this year, and judging by the sheer number of flower stalks, needs to be split this year as well, before it crowds out the other 3 Irises. Heh.

6 years ago I split my first few Irises I planted here as they were like yours originally. Since, I've gotten less and less blooms- some haven't bloomed since, smaller too, despite feeding regularly, weeding and keeping the dead leaves out.

so who knows. Sometimes it just depends on the Iris.

Yours are definitely happy and quite gorgeous as well.

Edited at 2012-05-03 07:13 pm (UTC)
big_girl
May. 3rd, 2012 07:33 pm (UTC)
Well then, I am one lucky duck!
zyada
May. 3rd, 2012 08:16 pm (UTC)
At one place I had some irises that had never bloomed (they came with the house, and the boyfriend) Until one year the BF mowed them down. The next spring the whole group bloomed happily.
big_girl
May. 3rd, 2012 08:52 pm (UTC)
Kill 'em with, well, not kindness.
zakniteh
May. 3rd, 2012 09:05 pm (UTC)
Plants surprise me to no end. You think they're gonna die on you because of some very rough loving, and then they thank you with a botanical splendor like in your photo.

Lovely irises. =)
spiffystuff
May. 4th, 2012 02:41 am (UTC)
Glad it worked out! I understand your worry - I had some really nice yellow and purple irises growing here and split them last year. I was soooo worried it meant they weren't going to bloom this year, which is likely my last year at this house! But the purple ones are flowering now and I came home today and found the yellow ones have made buds too :D
It's not guaranteed but it's nice it worked out!!!
dark_phoenix54
May. 4th, 2012 03:56 am (UTC)
That's a very beautiful iris!
leeneh
May. 4th, 2012 07:33 am (UTC)
I have quit trying to figure out why my irises behave a certain way. Some years they look good, other years they look not so good. Some years they make lots of flowers, other years you see just a stalk here and there. I'm sure they have their reasons for this behaviour, but they seem to do things on whim. This year they don't look too happy. The stalks look taller and the flowers look smaller than usual - could it be the dry winter we've had? Come September they will be divided. Yours seem very content - you did the right thing!

We're in very steep country here where I am, and irises get planted mostly in places that are difficult to maintain - like on top of the retaining walls between the property fences and the road - and then left to their own devices. After a few years they quit blooming because they're too crowded, and all you see are pale stunted leaves sticking up. The sight makes me want to climb up there and divide them despite the crazy Italian drivers on the road below.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )

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