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Plants in the Alpine House or Cold Frame: Juno Irises

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Started by: Ron Mudd

They bring a smile to my face with early colour

Go to latest contribution by Ron Mudd, 14 March 2012, 08:58. Go to bottom of this page.

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Contribution from David Nicholson 21 March 2011, 18:54top / bottom of page

..... and one more.

Iris 'Warlsind'

Contribution from Ron Mudd 22 March 2011, 09:07top / bottom of page

Wonderful plants David. More to come?

Thank you for the lead on the lime. Does it make a difference in your opinion? We intend to build a large raised bed for Junos this year and are wondering if we should incorporate the lime and if so at what amount. We hope that a large bed will protect against the temperatures we endured this year, which had a devastating effect on our potted Junos.

We have magnifica, pseudocapnoides, vicaria and a hybrid called 'Sindbad' in flower at the moment and looking really well but my camera is playing up and all the pics are out of focus. Hope to rectify this before they go over. Various 'orchiodes' are just getting flower buds, and if this sunshine continues will also be open in the next few days.

Contribution from Ron Mudd 22 March 2011, 18:48top / bottom of page
iris albomarginata

Didn't mention earlier but we also have I. albomarginata in flower today. It seems that there is a lot of confusion over this species and that many of the plants distributed as albomarginata are in fact something else. Ours fit perfectly with many of the descriptions but has a thin strip of yellow amongst he blue and white. Can anyone throw any light on this species please. The SIGNA website shows wildly different flowers under this species name!

Contribution from David Nicholson 24 March 2011, 20:30top / bottom of page

Ron, in respect of lime I do think it makes a difference. As well as adding Dolomite Lime to my potting mix I roll the bulbs, and roots, of all my Junos in the lime when I re-pot them. I also roll bulbs of Iris reticulata species and forms in Dolomite Lime at re-potting time too.

I also dress the soil with Dolomite Lime when I split and re-plant bearded and non-bearded Irises.

In "The Iris" Brian Mathew says of I. albomarginata "..... the blade of the falls is furnished with a white crest or ridge with a yellowish zone around it...." Later he also says "The plants I have seen in flower in britain do not exactly agree with the description given above, although I think this can be partly explained by changes in the growth habit due to cultivation...."

here are two more of mine:-

Iris magnifica 'Agalik'


Iris 'Morning Sky'

Contribution from Ron Mudd 26 March 2011, 16:13top / bottom of page
Iris vicaria

Thank you David for the information. We will certainly be giving the Dolomite lime a go at repotting time this year, if we can get hold of some!

Haven't reaLly sorted out the camera issues but thought this pic of Iris vicaria wasn't too bad.

Iris vicaria

Contribution from David Nicholson 28 March 2011, 20:00top / bottom of page

Nice vicaria Ron.

A couple more of mine- Iris graeberiana White Fall

and I. magnifica

Contribution from David Nicholson 03 April 2011, 16:50top / bottom of page

Another one of mine:-

Iris vicaria 'Varsob'

Contribution from Ron Mudd 03 April 2011, 17:36top / bottom of page

Beautiful plants David, wonderfully growm and finely photographed! No one can say that you haven't shown enough of the plant this time! You really have some superb Junos this year.

Isn't it a shame that this AGS forum doesn't attract the numbers, detail, cultural exchange, respected grower contributions, and all around joy which appears on say the SRGC Juno Iris discussion forum! A real shame.

Contribution from Ron Mudd 20 January 2012, 18:40top / bottom of page

Although many growers of Junos post relevant comments/pics/advice on other websites I still hope we can tempt you Junophiles to share on this forum also. I have been doing a number of talks/presentations to what may be termed 'general gardening groups' and I believe that there is enormous interest in learning more about and attempting to grow Junos. Also as a side comment we have freely given a large number of I. bucharica to returning members of the Armed Forces on the premise that something beautiful can come out of the central Asia area. Most have grown them as house plants on their windowsills and have been very succesful with them and have admired them enormously. Our first in flower this year is I.narbutii and I hope to post pics over the next few days. The first flower opened today and there are two more following. I'll post when the max flower power is showing and also make sure that I show that complete plant and environ in the photo to allow everyone to judge the plants worth. Maybe!

Contribution from Tim Ingram 20 January 2012, 22:11top / bottom of page

Ron - I have never grown many Juno's but they are the most exquisite plants and John Kemp in Kent is an exceptionally fine grower. It would be very nice to see more on the website because you can pick up so much excellent advice on growing the plants - almost like a steady tutorial over time.

Your idea of giving plants to returning servicemen really shows the very great value that plants can have to people outside the Society (and might stop us getting a little too precious about them!).

Contribution from Ron Mudd 24 January 2012, 16:31top / bottom of page

I think you summarise perfectly Tim.

Contribution from Ron Mudd 24 January 2012, 16:48top / bottom of page
I. narbutii

We've had this plants since a seedling and last winter thought it was gone! It was frozen solid for weeks in its pot, hard as a house brick. When the thaw came it tried to grow but the leaves were contorted and shredded and the plant was giving the appearance of being very sick. After the small amount of growth died back I knocked the plant out of its pot and found two nice looking bulbs. There appeared to be a large amount of 'rot' between the bulbs. After cleaning up each bulb was potted seperately. This one had its 'nose' close to the surface and its partner was planted one inch deeper. The deeper one is just showing through the grit today. Seems an extra inch makes a big difference! to the emergence times. We really thought that we must have lost this plant last year, but along with a number of other Junos which 'froze solid' they seem to be tougher than we thought. The last few days have been very dull and overcast here and the next two flowers have not opened yet. So I am posting today and if we get all three opened together then I'll repost.

I think these Junos are easier than most people think!

I. narbutii

Contribution from Ron Mudd 29 January 2012, 13:14top / bottom of page

Contribution from David Nicholson 29 January 2012, 20:01top / bottom of page

Very nice Iris narbutii Ron, it's not one I grow. I'll be along soon, it looks as though 'Warlsind' will be my first.

Contribution from Ron Mudd 30 January 2012, 12:28top / bottom of page

Looking forward to seeing that David. 'Warlsind' is a hybrid plant, from which parents? We only grow two hybrids, 'Sindbad and 'Sunny Side Up'. Both grow well but we are becoming 'plant snobs!' and tending to focus only on species across the different genera. Do you find the hybrids to be less demanding than the species? There are more and more Juno hybrids becoming available and should we be recommending them as suitable for people new to growing Junos?We understand this to be the case but have no experience. If anyone reading these pages has any Juno hybrid pictures please post them as I am sure there are people who would like to try them.

Contribution from David Nicholson 30 January 2012, 20:14top / bottom of page

According to Brian Mathew I. warleyensis x I. aucheri. Yes, I do find the hybrids easier.

Contribution from Luc Gilgemyn 03 February 2012, 16:55top / bottom of page

Truly splendid I. narbutii Ron !! Fantastic colours !

Interesting to have you confirm how frost hardy they are ! They're amazing plants - there are a lot of weather conditions they seem to hate, but cold surely is not one of them.

Thanks for showing this exquisite narbutii - I hope to show some of mine in a couple of weeks !

Contribution from Ron Mudd 06 February 2012, 09:56top / bottom of page

Thanks Luc. Looking forward to seeing your posts.

They really have amazed me this year, in the way that they have recovered from the damage caused last winter. Its as though the freezing never happened! Some pots never even got any leaves up last year but are now growing away very nicely.

I am going to build a Juno bed this year and try many more species outside in this. Given the unpredictable nature of our climate I'm thinking that if they can be grown outside here then perfect drainage must be a starting point.

Does anyone have any experience regarding the suitability of 'modern' hybrids for growing outdoors?

Contribution from Richard Jeffery 13 March 2012, 22:07top / bottom of page
Iris aucheri (Blue form)

Here is a picture of the blue form of Iris aucheri giving its first flower of the year on the 28th February.It has since gone on to produce two more flowers on the same plant - not sure if it will produce any more, but it would be nice if it prolonged the display a little bit.

Iris aucheri (Blue form)

Contribution from Ron Mudd 14 March 2012, 08:58top / bottom of page

Very nice Richard. I hope it will produce more flowers for you. Very well grown. Thanks for showing it to us.

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