Crested iris

Iris cristata

Photo/Illustration: 
Chris Curless
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Crested iris (Iris cristata)
EYE-riss kris-TAY-tah
Genus:  Iris
Spectacular, but fleeting, stemless blooms have blue-lilac petals, each with a white patch and a yellow or orange crest on each fall. Crested iris blooms in May. Dagger-shaped leaves 5 to 6 inches tall form an attractive, cool green carpet of stiff leaves. ‘Alba’ is a white-flowered variety.
Care:  This short, dense relative of common garden irises thrives in shade. It enjoys moist, acid soil, but blooms well even in dry shade.
Propagation:  Divide and replant rhizomes in fresh soil after 2 to 5 years.
Problems:  Iris borer, verbena bud moth, whiteflies, iris weevil, thrips, slugs and snails, aphids, and nematodes. Bacterial leaf blight and soft rot, crown rot, rhizome rot, leaf spot, rust, viruses, and scorch.

Overview

Height
6 in. to 12 in.
Light
Part Shade Only
Moisture
Medium Moisture
Characteristics
Native,
Showy Flowers
Bloom Time
Spring
Flower Color
Island Paradise,
Salmon,
White,
Primrose Yellow
Uses
Beds and Borders,
Cut Flower
Seasonal Interest
Spring Interest
Type
Perennials

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