Dee W
Dee W
  • Hometalker
  • Senecaville, OH
Asked on Aug 3, 2012

plant clean-up

Douglas HuntDee W
+4

Answered

I am touching up around my flowerbeds and wondered if anyone trims back their irises, lilies or other plants. I also have 4 peacock orchids which are new to me this year and wondered what if any aftercare they might need.
7 answers
  • Douglas Hunt
    on Aug 5, 2012

    You should allow the foliage on your lilies to yellow before you cut it back, Dee. Until that point, the plant is supplying nutrition to the bulb for next year's blooms. What type of irises do you have? Siberian irises need very little care. Some people cut the foliage on German (bearded irises) but I do not recommend this on foliage that looks healthy. Likewise, you should allow the foliage on your peacock orchids (Gladiolus acidanthera) to yellow. This plant cannot tolerate temperatures below the mid-20s, so the corms must be lifted in the fall as you would do for a dahlia.

  • Dee W
    on Aug 5, 2012

    Thank-you Douglas. I am not sure what type of iris I have, They just look so bad with the empty stem hanging out of them and I remember my g-mom cutting them on a diagonal-I thought way before now because the stems would be grown back before autumn. The leaves do look good, so I will just leave them. I will also be sure and bring in my orchids before the first frost. Thank-you again.

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Aug 6, 2012

    You can, and should, remove the stem, Dee. The first frost is probably a good time to bring in your orchids. You don't really need to do so beforehand.

  • Dee W
    on Aug 6, 2012

    Oh, that's good to know-about it being alright for them to go thru a frost. That will give me a little more time to get my act together since most of my time is spent raking leaves. Oh, should I store them in a paper bag or is an onion bag alright? They would be hanging in the basement. Thanks again for your help, Douglas.

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Aug 7, 2012

    Dee, according to the University of Minnesota Extension Service, you should dig up the corms when a frost kills the foliage, then cure two to three weeks in a dry, well-ventilated area at about 60 - 70 degrees F. Remove old corm and cormels. Then store in labeled paper bags (35 to 40 degrees would be ideal). Good luck.

  • Dee W
    on Aug 7, 2012

    Thank-you Douglas!

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Aug 8, 2012

    You're welcome, Dee. Good luck with your peacock orchids.

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