Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Iris Racaps begin as the "Season of the Borer" ends.

It's been a long summer in the garden and I have not really updated this blog in a while.

The iris blooms in June were wonderful! As were the daylilies in July and some are still blooming...

August, however brought about the heartbreak of iris borers.

I thought the foliage was not looking so great but when I started cleaning up I discovered that, for the first time to my knowledge, the borers had invaded.

The war is now over for this season. Because of the advanced stage of development, no insecticide could be used. The only thing to do was to dig up every rhizome, discard the worst, wash them, put them in a 10% bleach bath for an hour, rinse them, dry them and replant them.

Given my collection of more than 50 cultivars and 5 to 10 rhizomes of most, that was a task. I had to label each and keep them separated. Splitting them and making room for new acquisitions also meant having to dig 4 new beds.

The good news is that many seem to be showing new growth and now I know what I need to do next year!

It's my plan to recount the season on this blog and record the new plantings. Earlier this year we had an iris bloom party and my good friend Andy Smith too some stunning photos. I posted then in Andy Smith Photos, part 1 and part 2. I will discuss all cultivars as I recap.

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