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Re: PR: Gardens

From: "Martha Brown" <mbrown@pldi.net>


: From: Irisborer@aol.com

: a)  Display Gardens (or any garden for that matter that grows irises). 
: is the best way to educate the public.  Nothing speaks for irises than
: one well - grown.  If your local Botanical Gardens or Civic Garden Center
: not have any irises planted - then we need to invite folks to our
: gardens - and we should be prepared to talk about what grows, what may
: cultural tricks, problems and their solution and so on and so forth.  

: I'd love your feedback.  I'd love your (positive) thoughts.  And I'd love
: continue this dialog.
: Kathy Guest...

	As a new Iris devotee I am thinking about developing a new garden area for
hemerocallis and iris mainly with some other perennials and annuals for
cutting.  I am in NW Oklahoma with hot and dry summers normally and nearly
constant wind.  My soil is very sandy with almost no water retention.  The
plan I am playing with in my mind would be a square approximately 100 to
120 feet per side with tall hedges probably of privet as it is inexpensive
(I can start it from cuttings) evergreen and fast growing.
	Inside the hedge I want to use permanent (probably paved) pathways so you
won't sink in the sand.  I also plan to use raised beds so I can amend the
soil and keep it in the beds with use drip irrigation.  
	Now for the questions.  

(1)  I am thinking about 4 foot wide beds with two rows of plants in each
bed with the plants in the rows off set from each other.  Five plants would
be set in a " W " pattern  with a plant at each point when observed from
the path.  Should I use all Iris in a bed and hemerocallis in another?  Or
use one row of Iris and one of hemerocallis in each bed?  Or should I
alternate the Iris and hemerocallis in the rows?

(2)  How much space should I allow for each plant?

(3) How often should I plan to divide the plants?  This is important as I
want to develop it so if I divide every four years I can plan to develop
1/4 of the garden each year for four years.  Then the fifth year the first
beds would be divided.

(4) I want to make this as low maintenance as possible other than the
division of plants.  Any suggestions toward that goal would be appreciated.

(5) This garden will probably be on one or two garden tours each year when
it is developed along with the rest of my landscape so I want it to be done
right with labels etc.

	I am sure there are more questions I should ask but haven't thought of and
would appreciate any input you might have.


M Brown
NW Oklahoma, USA
USDA Zone 6b,  Sunset Zone 35

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