Although starfish iris plants don’t look like true iris, they share many of the same characteristics. What is a starfish-iris? This extraordinary plant comes from South Africa. It has an exotic appearance, but it is familiar. Corms are best grown in USDA zones 9-11. They can also be planted indoors in northern areas. Starfish iris is a great choice for gardeners who are always on the lookout for interesting and unique plants to enhance their landscape. What is a Starfish Iris, you ask? The starfish iris Ferraria crispa blooms from late winter through early summer, and then goes into dormancy during the summer. One corm can develop many corms, which will give a brightly-colored floral display after several years. Starfish iris’ exotic appearance is not a problem. The corms can be grown in any sunny area and require little care.
This plant is frost-resistant and can not withstand freezing. Starfish iris is a thick, fleshy sword-like plant that grows from its corms in autumn. 1.5 inches (3.8 cm. The stars of the show are the 1.5 inch (3.8 cm) blooms. Six creamy white petals are found on the surface, with purple-to-mauve spots scattered across the surface and edges. Some Ferrari varieties have a vanilla-like smell, while others attract insects with a strong unpleasant odor. Each corm only produces a handful of flowering stems, and the flowers last for a short time. Starfish iris plants look a lot like a frilly-spotted starfish. How to Grow Starfish Iris Starfish iris can be grown in any area that is free from frost and where the soil drains freely. The plants can be grown in containers that have a slightly sandy soil.
Corms thrive in temperatures between 40 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit (4-24 C.). Cool nights of 65 degrees Fahrenheit (18 C.) are the best for plants. Plant corms 2 inches apart and 1 inch deep to grow flowers in containers. (2.5-5 cm). Plant the plants outdoors 3 to 5 inches deep (7-10 cm) and space them 6-8 inches (15-20 cm). The soil should be kept moist. Allow the flowers to remain for a few weeks after they have died to collect solar energy that will fuel next season’s growth. After letting the soil dry for a few weeks, remove the corms and store them in a dry bag. Starfish Iris Care: It is important to divide these plants every 3 to 5 year. The number of blooms produced will be reduced by the tendency for corms to accumulate. You should dig around the area for at least 12 inches (30cm). Lift the corms gently and place them under.
You can only plant one at a given time, and you should separate any plants that have grown together. The corms will begin to produce leaves and container plants will benefit by feeding at the same time. These pretty plants are not susceptible to disease or pests, but they can still be affected by slugs. There are many cultivars to choose from. You will find the plants very addictive, so make sure to check out all of the hybrids and colors available. You will be astonished at how many exotic plants you have in your garden.