Storing iris rhizomes till fall

Asked July 19, 2014, 4:11 PM EDT

I had to move a garden that was full of iris rhizomes. Do I need to replant them immediately or is there a way to preserve them until we are past the summer heat?

Broomfield County Colorado

1 Response

Iris rhizomes may be stored in a cool, dry place in vented plastic bags filled with shredded damp newspaper or sawdust.They can also be stored in the refrigerator, away from apples and other fruit. While storing rhizomes, check them frequently to make sure mold is not developing. Keep the moisture balanced, not too dry or too wet. If they become dry or wrinkled, transplanting success may be limited.

Even in the heat, the best solution may still be to plant them outside with close monitoring of moisture. This may be achieved by mulching the plants and keeping them moist, but not overly wet. When mulch is applied, avoid mulching directly up to the rhizome itself as too much moisture held directly against the rhizome will cause them to rot.