big, big problems

mrtoad(7b NC)April 21, 2011

i am new to iris - have no idea what is going on here - can not find insects - seems not too be the bore - please help - what is this and how to treat

thanks so much - a bit sad

mr toad

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I have no idea what has caused such awful harm to your beautiful iris.

I hope some of the experts will respond to you.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 12:16PM
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Nancy zone 6

I have no idea either, you didn't get a really hard freeze after the buds formed, did you?

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 4:06PM
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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

I have never seen that. Sorry, Mr. Toad.


    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 9:56PM
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Some of mine did that several years ago after a nasty cold snap...just turned them to mush...the rest opened fine..

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 11:36PM
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you can always try cutting those buds off & see if you get new buds on those iris. it couldn't be any worse than what you have now.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2011 at 12:00AM
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Possibly your County Extension Office could give an answer. The one here has always been able to help with questions I've had.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2011 at 8:24AM
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According to Your Photos, You have a well developed case of Iris Borer. It is caused by a moth, that lays eggs on foliage in the fall, they hatch in Spring, and will look like tiny worm like critters. If You look in the folds of leaves that look like they are affected, You will find them. You can squash all YYou find. Remove the bad buds. They also will burrow into the rhizomes, and cause their problems there. When they start feeding on the rhizomes, the leaves will turn yellow. and will destroy the plant. There is no reason to discard your plants, they can be dug up in the fall, cleaned and replanted. By then the tiny borers will have grown to at least 1 to 1 1/2 inch long and fat. If You do a search for "The American Iris Society", and/also for "Iris Borer" You will find what to do. There are ways to prevent the problem. Good luck. Don't give up on Your plants. You only need to know how to deal with this.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2011 at 11:53PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

whether or not there is a borer problem ... why would that cause buds to die ... i have had borer issues.. and never had it cause bud failure ... unless that is a possibility in warmer zones ... that isnt up here .. with the late cold weather.. the borers just arent large enough to do significant damage until august ...

up here in the great white north... where the iris are still only 3 inches tall ... that type of damage would easily be called frost or freeze damage .. can we rule that out for your NC this spring ???

then i would speculate toward lawn fert/crabgrass spray drift???

and then i would ask if you fertilized them since last fall .. ???

it may be a mystery that is never solved ...


    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 1:22PM
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mrtoad(7b NC)

Thanks for your answers, your help and encouragement. I am beginning to believe this is weather related.
This spring we have had (here in western north carolina) very unusual weather. Two very warm spells (southern term) and two very cold snaps (another southern term)including a very late heavy frost. As ken pointed out, "primarily bud damage." In checking thoroughly, almost no flag damage.
So, maybe I escaped a major problem.

Again , thanks , mr toad

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 3:42PM
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Cindy Lloyd(7)

I'm a complete newbie, but I had the same thing happen to my Iris' this year. Bad, unusually bad weather late in the year for NC. Mine are definitely blooming in spite of being frost bitten or burned. New buds emerged and they're all gorgeous. Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 10:32PM
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