Dwarf Bearded Irises. Varieties. Photo

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Dwarf Bearded Irises. Varieties. Photo
Dwarf Bearded Irises. Varieties. Photo

Video: Dwarf Bearded Irises. Varieties. Photo

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Video: Dwarf Bearded Irises: The Three Types of MDBs 2023, February
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Bearded irises are the most watercolor perennials. The luxury of flowering and the unprecedented beauty of both forms and colors, despite the limited flowering period, and not so easy cultivation, have long made them the favorites of landscape design. But not all bearded irises can boast of such a status. Low, or dwarf varieties of bearded irises are undeservedly overlooked. And in vain: these plants will give odds to their usual tall brethren. After all, the possibilities of their use are not limited to flower beds and flower beds, but include rockeries and pot culture.

Iris bearded dwarf
Iris bearded dwarf

Content:

  • The difference is only in height
  • Dwarf irises in alpine gardens
  • Miniature irises in flower beds and mixed plantings
  • Potted mini irises
  • Simple conditions for abundant flowering
  • Partners for dwarf bearded irises

The difference is only in height

Dwarf bearded irises in height are limited to a maximum of 30-40 cm, although most often these crops will not exceed 20 cm. But despite such modest sizes, their flowers are no less bright and large. And their variety is no less than that of medium or tall irises. And even the tenderness of the petals, such a beloved "beard" and abundance of flowers will not enter their brothers. 2-3 flowers bloom on one peduncle, but the density of the bushes compensates for this with a large number of flower-bearing shoots.

The only difference is the height of the leaves and peduncles. This is a kind of miniature copy of ordinary bearded irises, while the "reduction" does not apply to flowers. But their endurance and unpretentiousness is expressed to a much greater extent. Small irises open up new and sometimes unexpected possibilities of garden design.

Garden dwarf bearded irises are divided into two categories of varieties:

  • Standard Dwarfs - Standard Dwarf Bearded (SDB)
  • Miniature Dwarf Bearded (MDB)

Key benefits of undersized varieties:

  • they grow much faster and create spectacular bushes by the second year after planting;
  • dwarf irises bloom more abundantly and two weeks earlier than medium and tall bearded irises;
  • the foliage of miniature irises retains its beauty until the end of the season and is no less spectacular than the best decorative deciduous plants; sets architectural accents.
Iris dwarf 'Stitch Witch'
Iris dwarf 'Stitch Witch'

They were bred only a little more than a century ago on the basis of two natural types of irises - dwarf and squat. Thanks to breeding and crossing with beards, they have acquired a flowering, just as spectacular as those of large bearded varieties, but retained their size, non-capriciousness and more attractive foliage. Conventionally, all miniature bearded irises are divided into miniature dwarf and standard dwarf. The second ones produce peduncles 10 cm higher and several flowers more.

The best varieties of undersized bearded irises:

  • very bright blue-violet variety "Adrian Taylor" with an unusual aroma;
  • wine, with a unique shade of color "Lollipop";
  • purple-red with a blue beard Ruby Contrast;
  • melon-oil variety with warm apricot color and orange beard 'Tinkled Peach'
  • 'Pretty Cute' with a pink-orange color and a play of peach tones;
  • "Amsterdam" with a bright golden yellow color and brown spots;
  • 'Boo' with snow-white upper petals and dark purple lower petals with white ruffles;
  • 'Chrystal Bright', whose snow-white color is highlighted with a bright yellow spot on the lower petals;
  • abundant and very unusual 'Serenity Prayer' with a play of snow-white and light yellow, dark purple spots, accentuated by the pointed shape of the lower petals;
  • sunny yellow with orange buds 'Sun Doll' variety.

Low-growing bearded irises can be used to decorate:

  • flower beds, ridges and mixborders in the foreground;
  • to decorate the lawn with flowering and architectural groups;
  • in iridariums as the basis of compositions;
  • borders and framing of paths and paths with temporary coverage;
  • alpine slides and rockeries;
  • potted gardens and containers.

Dwarf irises in alpine gardens

In rocky gardens, even on the south side or among large boulders, stunted bearded irises will not only not get lost, but will also feel comfortable. Due to their much less capriciousness, they adapt well to atypical soil for irises and much drier conditions. And how good they are against the background of stone chips and decorative filling! Even the most modest gravel or crumbs, when planting miniature irises, change beyond recognition and seem to be an exclusive coating.

In rock gardens and rockeries, low-grade bearded irises seem to be real shining treasures. Their large flowers immediately catch the eye and set luxurious accents. They blend effectively with most of the crops typical of rocky gardens. Small-leaved and flowering carpet-like ground covers from alyssum to aubriet, inimitable dwarf shrubs and conifers - all of them only enhance the beauty of these crumbs.

However, when planting irises, you should be more careful than when planting bulbs: aggressive pillows and creeping plants can easily press them, so you need to leave enough free space for irises.

Irises are bearded, dwarf
Irises are bearded, dwarf

Miniature irises in flower beds and mixed plantings

Low varieties of bearded irises are perfect for classic flower beds and flower beds. It is believed that this is one of the most advantageous perennials for modern flower beds with decorative mulch or pebble soil. The same laws work here as when introducing mini-irises into rocky gardens - a winning disclosure of the texture of stone chips and the most vivid presentation of the beauty of the flowering of the irises themselves.

In such flower beds, the beauty of each individual plant is revealed as much as possible, because the crops are located at a sufficient distance, and beautiful mulch creates a luxurious background. But even in the foreground of ordinary flower beds and tents, they look no worse as a border around flower arrangements.

Potted mini irises

These plants, modest in size, but far from modest in beauty of flowering, grow well in separate containers. Low-growing varieties of bearded irises can be placed in decorative pots and small bowls, and in simple pots or balcony boxes. But they will look no worse in complex, combined compositions. Moreover, the correct selection of partners will allow beautifully blooming irises to appear in all their splendor.

The only thing needed to turn low irises into true container stars is good drainage. For these plants, you can use only containers with a good drain hole, and drainage from expanded clay or large shards is laid at a height of at least 5 cm. From above it must be covered with a non-woven material, and only then planting.

Iris dwarf
Iris dwarf

Simple conditions for abundant flowering

Low-growing bearded irises will bloom more colorful, the brighter and sunnier place you pick them up. They are not afraid even of the south-facing slopes of rock gardens - so feel free to plant them in the lightest parts of the garden and immediately give up even a light shade. As for the soil, they grow well in any high-quality, drained, loose texture and non-acidic soil.

Planting low-growing irises is carried out according to the same rules as medium and tall varieties. Be careful with mulching the soil: mini-irises do not tolerate mulch in the form of organic matter, grass, tree bark, in a word, any plant materials. For them, only a protective layer of stone chips or sand is suitable.

Such irises are planted shallowly, placing the rhizome horizontally and only slightly covering it with earth so that the rhizomes remain level with the soil upward (only on sandy soil they can be buried 1-2 cm). Where the soil is damp or there is a risk of stagnant water, irises are planted on hills or raised rows.

In terms of care, dwarf irises are easy to grow. All they need is one single top dressing in spring, which is best done before flowering. Using potassium-phosphorus fertilizers, you will give the plants a powerful boost and they will bloom profusely.

Although today, to stimulate more abundant flowering, the standard for all irises scheme of 2-3 top dressings is often used (nitrogen-potassium fertilizers in early spring, nitrogen-phosphorus fertilizers in 2-3 weeks after the first dressing, and the third procedure is carried out only after flowering with full mineral fertilizers). The rest of the care comes down to trimming the peduncles after the completion of the colorful parade and cutting the leaves to a height of 10 cm at the end of the season.

They are separated every 3-4 years, from late July to September. For mini irises, the leaves are cut at a level of 7 cm from the soil, and then the rhizomes are carefully dug out. When separating, parts with 1-2 leaf rosettes and a sufficient bunch of roots are separated.

Partners for dwarf bearded irises

Low-growing bearded irises go well with medium-sized garden plants. The number of ideal partners for them includes a variety of carnations, and horned violet, and ornamental grasses, and dwarf woody plants, and ground covers. Perfectly emphasize their beauty Aubriet, alissum, evergreen Iberis, Dorfler thyme, subulate phlox, euphorbia myrtle, gray and sheep fescue, shaker, feather grass, armeria seaside, carnations grass and gray-blue, common tulip, late tulip, common tulip.

In a pot culture, undersized irises are perfectly combined with young, cat's paw, jaundice, saxifrage.

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