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Iris × robusta 'Gerald Darby'

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© RHS 2001

Characteristics

Plant type

Bog or Herbaceous Perennial

Habit

Clump-forming

Toxicity

Ingestion may cause severe discomfort

Resilience

Hardiness

old H4 (hardy)

Colour

Flower

Purple, White and Yellow in Spring

Foliage

Green in Autumn, Spring and Summer

Size

Ultimate height

1-1.5 metres

Ultimate spread

0.1-0.5 metres

Time to ultimate height

2-5 years


Preferred common name

iris 'Gerald Darby'

Family

Iridaceae


Iris may be rhizomatous or bulbous perennials, with narrowly leaves and erect stems bearing flowers with 3 large spreading or pendent fall petals, alternating with 3 erect, often smaller, standard petals, in late winter, spring or early summer

'Gerald Darby' is a rhizomatous perennial to 1.2m in height, with arching, narrow leaves and purplish stems bearing 3-4 violet-purple flowers, the falls whitish at the base with a yellow flash and dark veins

Synonym(s)

  • Iris laevigata 'Gerald Darby'
  • Iris versicolor 'Gerald Darby'
  • Iris 'Gerald Darby'

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun
  • Part shade

Aspect

  • South-facing, East-facing or West-facing
  • Exposed or Sheltered

Cultivation

Grow in moist to wet, deep, humus-rich, acid soil; thrives at the margins of ponds or streams

Soil

  • Poorly-drained
  • Acid
  • Sand, Loam or Clay

Propagation

Propagate by division of rhizomes from midsummer to early autumn

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Cottage/Informal Garden, Flower borders and beds or Cut Flowers


How to care

Pruning

Remove any dying foliage, old flower stems can be cut down after flowering

Pests

Prone to slugs, snails and thrips. Birds often peck flowers

Diseases

May be affected by grey moulds