Welcome to the Kentucky Native Plant and Wildlife Blog.

Welcome to the Kentucky Native Plant and Wildlife Blog.
The purpose of this blog is to provide information on using native plants in the landscape, issues related to invasive exotic plants, urban wildlife management, and wildlife damage management. It is my intention that this information will assist you in deciphering the multitude of information circulating around the web and condense in some meaningful method as it relates to Kentucky. In addition, I hope to highlight a native plant that can be used in the landscape.



Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Plant of the Week: Dwarf Crested Iris (Iris cristata)


This is one of our most common woodland wildflowers and should be a main stay in any shade garden.  While it will grow in deeper shade, it does best if it gets some sun, a few hours of day if possible and will grow in full sun if the soil stays constantly moist.  It will tolerate a wide variety of soil types and prefers calcaerous soils but it will grow quite well in more acidic soils with the addition of lime.  This is a species that likes rich humus and moist soil. If it likes where it is growing, it will form a nice large group and a mixture of the dark purple, light purple (eco bluebird or powder blue) and white forms (alba) is quite spectacular. This species gets its name from the yellow crests on the sepals.  The 1/2 to 3/4" wide leaves arise from very shallowly rooted rhizomes.  After flowering it can be easily divided. About the only problems might be slugs or snails and it is not a preferred deer plant. Excellent companion plants are numerous and foamflower works well, wild blue phlox, wild bleeding heart, green-n-gold, and one of my personal favorites is yellow trillium surrounded by this iris where the trillium stands above the iris (and this trillium is a bit later blooming in KY).  This is a very easy wildlfower to use in the garden and is a great beginner plant for those who have any hesitancy about using native plants.

 

3 comments:

  1. Sounds like a good plant to grow. Thank you for sharing.

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  2. thanks for share.

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  3. I appreciate the information on this little gem - have lots of it throughout our property and was wondering how hard it would be to divide and transplant. Looking forward to moving some this year now.

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