Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Tall Bearded Iris
Iris 'English Cottage'

Family: Iridaceae (eye-rid-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Iris (EYE-ris) (Info)
Cultivar: English Cottage
Hybridized by Zurbrigg; Year of Registration or Introduction: 1976

» View all varieties of Iris

12 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tall Bearded (TB)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)
15-18 in. (38-45 cm)
18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)
USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested
Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Early (E)
Reblooming (Re)


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Awards (if applicable):
Unknown - Tell us

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By laurief
Thumbnail #1 of Iris  by laurief

By laurief
Thumbnail #2 of Iris  by laurief

By loic
Thumbnail #3 of Iris  by loic

By Todd_Boland
Thumbnail #4 of Iris  by Todd_Boland

By laurief
Thumbnail #5 of Iris  by laurief

By rebecca30
Thumbnail #6 of Iris  by rebecca30

By Maxsmomma
Thumbnail #7 of Iris  by Maxsmomma

There are a total of 8 photos.
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2 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Maxsmomma On Nov 6, 2009, Maxsmomma from Philadelphia, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

Very hardy plant here in Zone 6b, southeastern Pennsylvania. Began rebloom in mid-October 2009 and was still going strong in mid-November 2009 with an excess of 7 blooms - and this is only the first full season I've had the iris. Strong scent of grapesicle (like a grape popsicle).

Positive laurief On Oct 20, 2003, laurief from Deer River, MN (Zone 3b) wrote:

Very few tall beardeds (TBs) can survive my growing conditions. This northern MN zone 3b climate inflicts severe, extended cold during the winter months, often with little snow cover for insulation. Summer temps can exceed 90 degrees F. My soil is very heavy, compacted clay with a slightly acid pH. A large local deer population frequently tramples and sometimes grazes on my irises in early spring and late fall. Iris borers are present but managed successfully with a granular systemic grub control product. Weeds are abundant and only occasionally beaten back by an admittedly lazy gardener (yours truly). Fertilization is inconsistent, when provided at all. Most TBs here are growing with less than 6 hrs of sun per day, so growth and bloom are not what they could be under full sun conditions. I have lost hundreds of weaker TB cultivars over the years, so the few that have managed to survive are worthy of high praise.

ENGLISH COTTAGE has behaved surprisingly in my garden. A rhizome planted in a raised bed with reasonably friable soil in full sun rotted away without increasing or blooming, while the rhizome planted in level, heavy, compacted clay with minimal sun remained perfectly healthy and increased like mad into a large clump with abundant bloom in spring 2003 (though that was the first bloom this cultivar has produced since planting in 2000). It's possible the rz in the raised bed was attacked by borers, however, which may explain its failure under what should have been much better growing conditions. In any event, this cultivar's ability to survive and bloom in my clay beds has convinced me of its toughness and value as a cold-climate garden iris.

EC's flowers are large, lovely, and irresistibly fragrant. A clump of EC in bloom can perfume an entire garden. This cultivar also blooms over a long period and has been reported to rebloom in USDA zones 5-9.



This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Derby, Kansas
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Durham, Maine
Baldwin, Maryland
Deer River, Minnesota
Marble Hill, Missouri
Shepherd, Montana
Syracuse, New York
Concord, North Carolina
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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