The roots are damaged in the process of digging and dividing. I
cut the leaves to reduce the demand on the roots for moisture. For
the same reason, I reduce the number of leaves on a shoot when I
take cuttings of other plants.
Also, my iris leaves sometimes grow quite long. I trim them when
dividing to keep the replanted rhizomes from tipping over since the
reduced roots cannot hold such a large plant upright.
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
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