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This page is just being constructed July, 2010, so all photos are not currently available for best detail and description.   However, this page is to give you information as to the size of Iris rhizomes I ship.   This page would also be the progression of the growth of Iris rhizomes.

There used to be an elderly gentleman hybridizer close to me in Indiana that I visited several years ago.   At the time I had very few Iris.   You could place your orders while visiting during bloom time, and he promised when he shipped (in September) that you would receive "a mother, with two babies on her back". When I ship Iris rhizomes in September, it is my hopes to always ship "a mother with two babies on her back", whether the rhizome itself is small or large, with large fans or small fans.   Based on this information, I will try to give you some detail about that which I am speaking.

The first photo is what I will refer to as a *clump* Iris. This is the "mother" rhizome which has already bloomed, and the bloom would have been the central area.   On each side would be the two babies beginning their growth to motherhood.   Usually by September in my area, these two babies will have come to maturity and be divided off the mother plant (which often/usually dies).
The second photo is what I consider a *small* rhizome for the majority of the tall bearded class.   You are seeing the back side of the rhizome.   I consider this small, not just because the rhizome itself is small, but because this rhizome has no babies on its back.   Where the orange arrows are pointing, there should be a baby in each position.   Currently do not think even my larger growth Iris yet have babies on their back and did not want to dig one to chech.   A photo of an Iris rhizome with two babies
on her back and hopefully side-by-side photos of a small rhizome and a large rhizome to be taken upon digging in September so that the information will be complete later this season and for 2011.

This section with two photos added 08/18/10, but remainder of page not updated.
The top photo is one side of the rhizome, and the bottom photo is the other side of the rhizome.   You can click on these two photos to view a larger photo.

On this Iris there are actually two babies on each size.   Generally the Iris I ship just have a total of two babies, one on each side.   In the top photo the baby to the left in the photo actually already has fan growth and possibly viewing the larger photo you can see the fan growth better, however, it looks difficult to see in my opinion.   In the bottom photo there are not only two babies but an eye. (Not sure of the proper Iris term for these things.)   By next spring this Iris should be a clump of five rhizomes.


Generally, the way the bloom cycle of the Iris works, is that the mother Iris is planted in late summer or autumn and the following spring the mother portion of the rhizome blooms, and then the next year the two babies (or how many ever babies) have matured and will bloom.


Question: When do you begin shipping?
Answer: Because I am in Indiana, and my Iris do not usually mature to a "mother, with two babies on her back", until September, I do not begin shipping until then.   However, beginning in 2010, I hope to begin shipping early to those who wish to place orders and accept either *small rhizomes* or *clump Iris* as described above. [Some rhizomes may be discounted for small, some may not.   Those discounted will show up that way in the shopping cart...so you will not know if they are discounted unless you use the shopping cart to order.]

Question: What size are your Iris (rhizomes)?
Answer: Hopefully the answers have been given above.   When shipping in September, my hopes are that you will receive a mother with two babies on her back.   Sometimes, based on the cultivar (or weather conditions), the rhizome itself may be small even though it has two babies on its back.   However, it has happened where we had very little rain during the late spring and early summer and the rhizomes just did not mature and increase as hoped.   This is one of the reasons I do not like to take orders early, because I am unable to make PayPal refunds after 60 days.   If your order is scheduled to be shipped in September, and I find I only have small rhizomes available, I generally refund that selection.   Also, the dwarf Iris, and some intermediates always have smaller rhizomes.

Question: What would be a benefit from ordering/receiving small or clump rhizomes early (May/June/July instead of September)?
Answer: Receiving and planting the Iris earlier is always better because the Iris can become better established by winter.   Receving a *clump Iris* (as pictured above), although it may look smaller in ways, is actually like receiving two small rhizomes.   It is possible that both of the babies would bloom the spring following planting (if planted in June/July) if given ideal conditions after transplant.   If receiving a *small rhizome* (as pictured above) early, it is likely that even this Iris would reach maturity and form the two babies on her back in your garden by the autumn of planting with a possibility of blooming the spring following transplant.   [Just a side note: I've had some huge rhizomes from the hybridizers not bloom for three years after transplant...so to me size *doesn't always* matter with respect to bloom the following spring after transplant.]

Question: Why can I not add Iris to my shopping cart?
Answer: It is likely that you have visited the page before I began taking orders.   I usually have some sort of note at the top of the main Iris page in red letters which is an indication as to where I am at for the year.   Or, there is an availability column.   It may be that the cultivar is not available (N/A) for ordering that year, or currently sold out (S/O).

Question: Why do you not begin taking orders until July?
Answer: Most customers use PayPal for payment (because they can use their credit cards) and PayPal only allows 60 days to make a refund.   After this period of time, if a refund is necessary, I would have to write refund checks and mail them which is much more time consuming.   Also, I am always concerned that a customer will be upset in receiving a check in refund when they paid through PayPal with their credit card.   Another reason is that I do the majority of the work for this business myself, and once I have an inventory taken of what I think will be available for shipping, I then have to update and post the web page.   It seems from past experience that I usually do not get this done until late June or the first of July, based on my heavy work load.   [Thanks to wonderful help for the 2010 season that I'm finished sooner.]

Question: My Iris doesn't have many leaf fans.   Is this considered a small rhizome?
Answer: Many times not.   [Please look at the rhizome part itself to determine if it's small or not.]   The oldest section of my garden planted with Iris competes with a tree line for moisture.   During the hot dry part of August (and sometimes even the first of September), although the rhizomes continue to grow, the Iris many times lose a lot of their leaves/foliage.   Once you have planted this Iris in your garden in good soil with ample moisture, it should quickly replace dead leaves/foliage.


If you have come to this page in May or June and would like to be added to my list of folks who would like an email when the Iris page is up-to-date and ready for ordering, please send me an email to let me know and I'll add you to the list.   Email address: tsflowers@carlnet.org  [you will need to copy/paste into your email client]   Thanks.

In placing an order for September shipping, it is good to give me an indication how you feel about small rhizomes.   As I have said above, I generally just cancel that variety and refund.   In the past, it has been even more difficult to discount a small rhizome after the fact, which sometimes entails a $1 refund.   This is way too time consuming.   If however, you would be willing to accept two (2) small rhizomes in place of one (1), that I will gladly do, however, you would have to make the indication as I've had complaints about that in the past.

Bonus/Gift Plant: It is my policy that I do not give bonus/gift plants.   Unlike the large hybridizers who do so, I sell *perennials*, and not just Iris rhizomes.   Although I say I don't, I usually try to include something extra...but please do not be disappointed if nothing extra was enclosed.   Hopefully I will begin enclosing divisions of my own seedlings which are very nice.

Also, if you have any other unanswered question, please feel free to email me.

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