How to plant Iris reticulata

Dwarf iris

Dwarf iris are fully hardy and will be happy outdoors throughout winter without frost protection. They should be planted between September and mid November for best results. If you’re not ready to plant them as soon as you receive them, you can store them in a cool, dry place for a short while. They may start to deteriorate from mid November onwards so it is best to get them planted before then - they won’t store until the following year.

— Dwarf iris bulbs can be planted directly outside in borders, rockeries or patio containers.

— If you have a heavy soil or soil with a high clay content, it is a good idea to incorporate plenty of compost and some grit or sand prior to planting to aid drainage.

— If planting in containers, we recommend using peat-free multipurpose compost.

— Choose a position in full sun or partial/dappled shade. They look great in stone planters and gravel gardens.

— Plant the bulbs around 5-10cm deep with the pointed side facing upwards.

— Space the bulbs around 5-10cm apart from each other. If planting in beds, group them into clusters for a higher impact.

— Cover back over with soil/compost after planting. If the soil is very dry, it’s a good idea to water them in after planting to settle them. They will not require any further watering through winter unless it is very mild and dry. They will only require water in spring if it is warm and the soil is dry.

— Leave the bulbs planted in the ground throughout the year. After flowering, allow the leaves and stem to fully die back or turn yellow before removing it, as this is feeding the bulb for next year. As the leaves are very fine, they may not need removing at all unless they look untidy.

Plant calendar

  • Planting
  • Flowering

Gracy's tips: Dwarf iris 

"There's nothing quite as fabulous as the site of colourful dwarf iris emerging in the earliest days of spring, sporting such ravishing, exotic-looking blooms which just seem to shine brilliantly no matter how cold it is outside!"

Planting instructions