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Best Time To Transplant Irises

When Is The Best Time To Transplant Irises?

One of the ways of caring for your iris plant is to transplant it. You might be wondering when is the best time to transplant your irises.

Iris plants are prone to becoming overcrowded every 2 to 3 years. This overcrowding may tend to stop your iris plant from blooming well.

It is crucial to divide and transplant your iris plant at the right time of the year. This will make sure your plant enjoys the most from the division.

How to Know the Best Time to Transplant Irises
When Is The Best Time To Transplant...
When Is The Best Time To Transplant Irises?

The Best Period to Transplant Irises

  • Summer/ Fall: The best time to transplant irises is usually in late summer till early fall. During this period, the iris must have bloomed enough.
  • Temperature: Transplant your irises when the temperature is around 40 degrees and 50 degrees Fahrenheit or above.

Transplanting your iris plant around this period will allow your plant to thrive well just before winter comes.

Also, you may be given an iris plant in a container around the early year.  You can proceed to transplant. You don’t have to necessarily wait for the appropriate time to plant. Get them transplanted to the ground as soon as it’s convenient for you.

Buy one of the many Iris varieties from or a Lousiana Iris Plant from Amazon.

The Best Period to Transplant Irises

Dividing and Transplanting the Irises

Iris plants usually get overcrowded so you will need to divide your iris plant. Overcrowding of the iris plant can subject the rhizome to lose its liveliness and stop generating good blooms. Therefore, one of the important ways of caring for your iris plant is to divide and transplant.

So when your iris becomes overcrowded, that’s a sign for you to divide and transplant in new soil. Let’s take a look at the steps in dividing and transplanting:

  • Pick the appropriate period to divide your iris. The best time is late summer and early fall.
  • Dig out the clusters of iris with a spade or fork.
  • Separate the mother plant from the offshoot roots. Dispose of the mother plant because it can no longer produce a bloom.
  • Examine the root of the plant. Check for any rotten tissues and remove infected or unhealthy areas.
  • The leaves should also be trimmed down to about 3 to 5 inches. This will help the plant establish new growth.
  • Replant your fresh rhizomes in a new bed.
  • Wet your plant every week and watch them grow.

Learn more about iris plant care and division in this video.

Transplanting Outside Summer or fall

Sometimes we might get a little busy and forget to check on the iris plant if it’s overcrowded. You can divide and transplant your iris in spring and still get a bloom. But sometimes you may not get a bloom. So there you have your options.

In summary

  • The appropriate time to transplant your iris plant is late summer to early fall.
  • Iris plant does get overcrowded. Therefore dividing and transplanting is one of the basic cares for your iris plant.
  • You can transplant your iris plant outside the summer or fall period. Sometimes you get a bloom, other times you might not get a bloom.


    How do you dig up irises and replant?

    When you dig up an iris, regardless of where it's from, what type of soil the plant is in and what time of day or night you are digging, the process remains relatively the same.

    You should first remove as much soil as possible without disturbing the roots by using a shovel or hoe. This will help prevent damage to the root system. Then you should use a trowel to carefully scoop out more soil until you can see a mass of roots that is not too wet. Once you have removed enough soil and seen where your iris is planted, use your hands to gently loosen up the roots by pushing them away from their home in order to expose them. Finally, use your fingers so that they are flat and spread out so that they can be easily removed and placed elsewhere.

    Can you leave iris bulbs in the ground?

    Iris bulbs can be left in the ground for up to 3 years, but if you find them at a nursery before then, it's best to plant them immediately so they do not get damaged by freezing temperatures or mold.

    Storing your iris bulbs in a cool dark place like your garage can also help to keep them from drying out.

    What is the best fertilizer for irises?

    The best fertilizer for irises is a mixture of compost and peat moss.

    There are other fertilizers that may work well, but these two are the most common.

    How do you dig up irises and replant?

    Iris are a group of flowering plants. They are usually planted in groups called clumps.

    Irises need to be planted at least 6-8 inches apart. They can be planted in the ground or in containers like pots, bowls, and window boxes. The soil should be well-drained and rich with organic material like peat moss, compost, or bark.

    The iris plant needs about 6 to 8 inches of water per week to survive in the garden.

    Do irises like full sun or shade?

    Irises like full sun because they can produce more blooms in full sunlight. When planted in partial shade, their blooms will be less abundant.
    In sunny regions, irises can be planted in any type of soil as long as there is plenty of sun for them to grow and flourish. In areas that receive less sunlight, the plant should be planted in a raised bed or a container with a rich soil mix.

    What is the best soil for irises?

    Irises require a well-drained and light soil. Some of the most popular soils for irises include: peat moss, cedar bark, pine needles, leaf mold, loam, composted manure or wood chips.

    All of these are fine as long as you are sure that they are well-drained and provide plenty of room for drainage.

    Is Epsom salt good for irises?

    Epsom salt is an inorganic compound containing magnesium and sulfate.

    Some people think that Epsom salt can be used to nourish flowers, but this has not been scientifically studied. When you pour it on the soil near the roots of your irises, it will not provide any nutrients to the flowers themselves. If you want to enrich your irises with magnesium or sulfur, you should use other products like fertilizer or compost instead of Epsom salts.
    It is documented in the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, "that Epsom salts are often mistakenly used to treat chlorotic (yellow) leaves. Chlorosis is caused by lack of chlorophyll or iron, which can be corrected by adding iron or any fertilizer with an adequate balance of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K). Epsom salts contain neither of these nutrients."