|Iris hookeri growing in the wild; photo by Todd Boland|
|Rare lavender form of Iris hookeri; photo by Todd Boland|
- Description and general information
- This dwarf iris is essentially endemic to the Gulf of St. Lawrence region; coastal Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Anticosti and Magdalen Islands the north shore of Quebec and southeastern Labrador. In its native haunts, it usually grows within reach of the ocean spray. The soil is often quite acidic with a high organic content. They also inhabit coastal sand dunes. Plants are somewhat variable in size, ranging from 10-30 cm. The flowers are generally a mid-blue but rarely you may encounter lavender forms or even white.
- This plant has changed names several times in the past. While originally described as I. hookeri, it was later reclassified as I. setosa ssp. canadensis. Recently it was once more segregated back to I. hookeri. Iris setosa is essentially a Eurasian species which extends into Alaska. Plants are quite tall in comparision to I. hookeri but the flower form is quite similar.
- This species is hardy into USDA zone 3 maybe even colder. Provide full sun and reasonably moist, organic-rich soil that is at least slightly acidic.
- Bloom period
- In Newfoundland, this species begins blooming in late June and throughout July. In more southern areas, they may bloom in April or May.
- Plants may be divided after blooming. They are also easily raised from seed but do require a stratification period of at least 6 weeks to maximize germination. Alternatively, you may sow the seeds in the fall and leave them outside for the winter. They will germinate quite freely come spring.
Created by mike.
Last Modification: Sunday 06 of September, 2009 12:40:02 CDT by Jeremy.
The original document is available at http://nargs.org/nargswiki/tiki-index.php?page=Plant+of+the+Month+July+2009