Danford Iris, Dwarf Iris, Buttercup Iris

Iris danfordiae

Family: Iridaceae (eye-rid-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Iris (EYE-ris) (Info)
Species: danfordiae (dan-FORD-ee-ay) (Info)
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Unknown - Tell us


under 6 in. (15 cm)


3-6 in. (7-15 cm)


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)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade


Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Bright Yellow

Bloom Time:

Extra early (EE)



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

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

Foliage Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


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


Ewing, Kentucky

Millersville, Maryland

Belleville, Michigan

Lake Orion, Michigan

Saint Clair Shores, Michigan

Norristown, Pennsylvania

Salt Lake City, Utah

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 9, 2013, sallyg from Anne Arundel,, MD (Zone 7b) wrote:

Early bloomer, mine coincides with Crocus tommasinianus and are similarly short to the ground. Blooming this year March 6- 12, started a couple days after the crocus. This Iris is all but invisible in winter, and then one day this bright yellow spike appears- its made me exclaim in surprise at least twice, as I had sort of forgotten to look for it, and it is so bright and intense. After bloom it will grow long thin leaves for awhile to renew the bulb.


On Nov 25, 2005, ineedacupoftea from Denver, CO wrote:

Mine bloomed Feb 1 last spring, before the I. reticulatas. Make sure not to combine this lemon-yellow with a crocus' golden -yellow. No kidding- It is quite disgusting!


On Mar 15, 2003, mystic from Ewing, KY (Zone 6a) wrote:

One of the first things to bloom, a sure sign spring is just around the corner.