CO-Horts

CO-Horts

Monday, May 9, 2016

The Answer: Iris "Accordians"

Posted by: Alison O'Connor, Larimer County Extension


Thanks for you comments...I laughed at the response that the plant didn't wear sunscreen (a good reminder to all of us!) and Dr. Steve Newman said a fellow Twitter follower said it was a result of listening to Lawrence Welk music.

My best guess...which was supported by fellow CO-Horts Mary Small and Tony Koski...is that it's most likely freeze/chilling injury. Since it was the third leaf on both sets of plants, it led me to believe that these plants were damaged either in the bud or as they were emerging. The plants are located close to the home and are always early to emerge, so it was likely during one of those cold snaps we experienced in late March or early April. Also the leaves were likely constricted during emergence, which led to the accordian-fold.

But if anyone has any other thoughts or reasons as to how this may have occurred, I'd love to hear (and be corrected).

6 comments:

  1. Only reason I didn't publish earlier.... I cheated and googled - this is what I found: This is caused by unusual weather conditions such as becoming too hot too fast, drought and heat stress. Chemical damage can also wrinkle leaves, but heat is the main reason. BUT this doesn't take into account the third leaf you mentioned. Vicky

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  2. What corroborates with Dr. Alison's and Dr. Tony's conclusion is what happens in other species. Pleated foliage in many plants is due to uneven expansion of laminar leaf tissue and vascular leaf tissue. Typically this is due to reduced or uneven calcium uptake and we use this observation to diagnose nutrient deficiencies in the field and is common with poinsettias. The third leaf was more than likely in its stage of pre-expansion when we had a cold snap. Apparently the vascular meristematic tissue is more sensitive to cold damage than laminar meristematic tissue. Thus the laminar tissue expands more quickly than the vascular tissue.

    This could be an interesting Ph.D. project.

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    1. Thank you Dr. Newman for your informative clarification of why this happens. Learned something new today! Thanks for responding.

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  3. Wow! Thanks to both Vicky and Dr. Newman. I love that you "cheated" Vicky, and Googled why it happened. Nonetheless, it was an interesting find in the garden. And there was great discussion. Now we're all a little bit smarter :)

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    1. Thanks Alison - always fun and interesting to discover 'finds' like that and understand the why! Thanks for your post.

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  4. How about trying to grow under a snow cover, or debris on top

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