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Re: RE:(iris) CULT: rot


>wondering if I should rev up the rototiller and get rid of the invading 
>quack grass.

All my rototiller manages to do is slice up the runners and spread the 
doggone quack all over my garden!  Quack grass and Canada thistle are the 
only things that can make me pull out the Round-Up.

>  I know now that I have the soft rot stuff. Whenever I scoop 
>out the squishy stuff, it smells bad, so I guess I have an infestation, 
>huh?

Yup, that's soft rot.

>  It has not struck my well-established Sutton's bed, only the newest 
>ones est. only one or two years.

As Linda noted, well-established clumps are less likely to fall victim to 
rot.  They've already acclimated to the environmental stressors that 
leave newer, smaller plants vulnerable.

>Planting depth is an issue someone mentioned to me.

Appropriate planting depth seems to vary according to soil type and 
climatic variables.  If I planted my beardeds 1" deep in my clay, I 
believe they'd suffocate and/or rot in short order.  Other northern 
gardeners, however, have mentioned great success planting rhizomes 1-2" 
deep in sandy or sandy loam soil with excellent drainage.  If I had 
access to large volumes of sand, I might be inclined to cover my rhizomes 
with an inch of it to protect them from freeze-thaw cycles during the 
non-growth seasons.

If you do decide to lift your rhizomes, you can do so now by digging down 
all the way around your irises.  Lever the entire clump (with attached 
soil) up enough so you can work an inch of dirt down into the bottom of 
the hole, then lower the clump back into the hole.  You can them scrape 
away the inch of dirt from the top of the clump to level it with the 
surrounding soil and expose the tops of the rhizomes.  Or you can wait 
till after bloom and lift and reset them then.

Happy irising,

Laurie




-----------------
laurief@paulbunyan.net
http://www.geocities.com/lfandjg/
http://www.angelfire.com/mn3/shadowood/irisintro.html
USDA zone 3b, AHS zone 4 - northern MN
acidic clay soil

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