what is wrong with irises that have no blooms
I planted a few irises last year and the leaves came up this year but no blooms. What did I do wrong?
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
The soil your irises are planted in may be low on phosphorus. Adding some bone meal to the soil around your plants can help. Here is more information: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/soil-fertilizers/phosphorus-plant-growth.htm
Did they have flowers last year? Sounds like they could be in too much shade. Irises like a lot of sunlight. A tiny bit of shade is ok, but if you have too much shade, they will not flower. If it was an older planting 10 years old or more It could be, they are too crowded and need to be divided. Be sure your irises are in full sun light or very close to that. Move them to a sunnier spot in your garden. The rhizomes should be about 1 foot apart or more, so they have room to grow and spread. The rhizomes should be close to the soil surface. Some people recommend that the rhizome itself is visible at the soil surface. Do they have enough water? New plants may be weak and may need a full year to become established. They may not flower the first year, but should flower the 2nd year, as they are a long lived perennial.
Also keep in mind that irises have not yet flowered this season, as it is currently early May and they should flower later in May or June. Look for iris plants in your community to see when they flower in your part of Zone 7. Different iris varieties flower earlier or later. You may have a later flowering variety. I have not seen any irises flowering here in Zone 7, Silver Spring Maryland, as of today - May 7, 2014.