Iris ensata
Iris ensata var. ensata. Photo by Flickr user Tanaka Juuyoh

Japanese iris

This plant grows well in the following regions:

  • SMSierra and Coastal Mountains
  • CVCentral Valley
  • NCNorth and Central Coast
  • SCSouth Coast
Map of regions (click to enlarge)
map of California regions


Japanese Iris is easily grown in average, medium to wet soils in full sun to part shade. It loves acidic, organically rich, saturated, and moisture-retentive soils. During the growing season, it thrives in standing water (up to 6” deep). Cultivars come in single, double and peony flowered forms in a wide range of colors including shades of blue, lavender, violet-red, pink and white.

This plant grows best on the edge of ponds and typically does not do as well when submerged.

Sun needs:

  • Full sun

Water needs:

  • High water
  • Medium water
Water needs information from WUCOLS unless otherwise noted