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Re: Burrowing Rhizomes

Linda Mann wrote:

:  One might hope that they (the plants) know what they are doing
:  and that it's ok.  But who knows. 

The plants do tend to seek the appropriate depth, if left in place.   A few
examples I've observed:

In Oklahoma, where the soil is heavy clay over sandstone,  long-naturalized TBs
tend to grow with the tops of their rhizomes exposed. 

In New Mexico, where the soil is almost pure sand, naturalized clumps of arils
form their rhizomes at a depth of about 3 inches.   (TBs don't naturalize.)

In Hot Springs, Arkansas, one group of TBs "decided" that the proper depth was 1
inch below the surface.  When we spent a vacation there with my aunt, she asked
me to dig her years-old iris bed because the plants had never bloomed.   I found
that each one had a rhizome about 6" deep and a pencil-like growth connecting it
to another rhizome about 1" deep.  My aunt planted her TBs 6" deep, like glads.
The iris didn't like that, so proceeded to form new rhizomes at the "proper"

Newly planted rhizomes are a different matter, of course.  If the soil settles
unevenly, some will end up too shallow and others too deep -- even if they were
planted at the same depth.  If the roots haven't taken hold firmly, a gentle tug
or push (whichever seems appropriate) will provide the needed correction.

Hope this comes close to answering the original question, which I seem to have
missed.  It's getting busier around here by the day as spring approaches.

Sharon McAllister

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