Last February in my Propagation Class at SF City College, we divided up a bunch of Douglas Iris, Iris douglasiana. We due to some unexpected warm sunny weather, we made a couple changes over the past 8 weeks.
Ideally when transplanting Douglas Iris, they like cool weather, overcast days, and some moist (not soggy) soil in order to get new roots established. However shortly after we divided and transplanted them, San Francisco received more warm sunny days than we expected which hit the plants hard.
We ended up building a screen mesh shelter to create part sun conditions. The shelter is doing a great job now, keeping the moisture in…but these California Natives still look a little stressed and slow growing.
Above you can see some new growth, that nice bright green foliage. We are not concerned about those dead leaves on the plants. When you transplant, the roots will often suck the energy out of the current leaves to establish new roots. Once the roots take hold, they will start producing more new growth… and that is what you are seeing here.
The day we divided the plants for the raised bed, we had dozens of extras which we put into 1 gallon containers and put them in the lath house. Since they have been in part shade since the beginning, they have been establishing themselves at a higher rate.
Here is a detail of one of the Douglas Iris in the lath house. In about another 4-8 weeks, we will clean up these California Natives and get them ready for the Spring Plant Sale May 6, 2010 to raise some funds for the department and scholarships.
– Matti Far Out Flora