En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
1 rating

Sunday - April 22, 2007

From: Lago Vista, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Water Gardens, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Companion plants for irises
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Hello...what do you suggest as a companion plant for irises? I live in the Texas Hill Country. Thanks.

ANSWER:

There are several of possibilities for companion plants for your iris, depending on whether they are growing in a flower bed or growing in a wet boggy area. Many native irises [e.g., Iris brevicaulis (zigzag iris) and Iris fulva (copper iris)] grow in marshy areas in the wild, but they also adapt to growing in traditional garden flower beds.

First, here are some suggestions for plants with contrasting color and foliage for a regular well-drained (but with moist soil) flowerbed:

Aquilegia canadensis (red columbine)

Asclepias tuberosa (butterfly milkweed)

Asclepias incarnata (swamp milkweed)

Salvia coccinea (blood sage)

Stachys coccinea (scarlet hedgenettle)

Physostegia intermedia (slender false dragonhead)

If your irises are growing in a semi-aquatic or aquatic area, then here are other suggestions:

Marsilea macropoda (bigfoot waterclover)

Bacopa monnieri (herb of grace)

Hydrocotyle umbellata (manyflower marshpennywort)

Saururus cernuus (lizard's tail)

Pontederia cordata (pickerelweed)


Iris brevicaulis

Iris fulva

Aquilegia canadensis

Asclepias tuberosa

Asclepias incarnata

Salvia coccinea

Stachys coccinea

 


Physostegia intermedia

Marsilea macropoda

Bacopa monnieri

Hydrocotyle umbellata

Saururus cernuus

Pontederia cordata
 

More Herbs/Forbs Questions

Need source of plants for making teas in Bend, Oregon.
July 08, 2012 - I love to make my own tea, just moved to central Oregon and want to know some good plants I can find anywhere in town and can use in my teas.
view the full question and answer

Less Maintenance Plant Suggestions for New Raised Bed in Henderson, NV.
April 03, 2014 - We have a newly constructed raised garden bed. I was wondering what kind of plants would be appropriate to plant this springtime in Henderson, NV with less maintenance because I work full time.
view the full question and answer

Plants for under a fountain splash line in California
January 29, 2009 - What plants should we plant under our fountain's splash line in our Mediterranean style courtyard? The area will get wet from the fountain's splashing and have "full" sun. We are on a rock ridge...
view the full question and answer

Deer resistant plants for area under grand fir (Abies grandis) in Idaho
July 08, 2010 - What can I plant on a slope under Grand Fir trees in North Idaho, zone 4 - anything deer resistant?
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native parsley from Brooklyn NY
June 17, 2012 - Had beautiful flat leaf parsley plants recently turn yellow & die. Found black armadillo like bugs bored throughout the roots. Now they're spreading. How do I kill them without contaminating the pla...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center