Irises forum: Raised beds

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Name: Jerry
Salem, IL
Charter ATP Member
Sep 3, 2011 8:54 AM CST
Not sure of the forum on which it was mentioned but someone liked the circular pattern of different colored blocks I used for some of my raised beds. The blocks are 4Hx8Wx12L and came in gray, brown, and red. Purchased from Lowe's and they may now have an additional color or two. Requires 12 for the bottom layer and, since they are alternated over the joints and have an inside locking 'lip', 11 on the top layer plus half of a brick to fill a leftover gap.

Single layer for a tree/patio rose mulched with white marble chips for contrast.
Thumb of 2011-09-03/Oldgardenrose/9bfd9f

Double layer for a newly transplanted peony.
Thumb of 2011-09-03/Oldgardenrose/aa40d6

This makes a circle of about 34 inches which is adequate for one peony or rose. It would also be perfect for one 'drop dead gorgeous' iris to be displayed and not disturbed for a few years. The cautions to be considered are a raised bed with cracks will dry out quickly in the heat of summer and, also, humus and organic material tend to rot and shrink more quickly than one would think so the filler material should be compacted to approximate natural soil and mounded slightly to compensate for shrinkage.
Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: United Kingdom Region: Northeast US Irises
Region: United States of America
Sep 3, 2011 2:52 PM CST
Interesting sites for plants. Most irises are spectacular (he he). I would reccommend 'Queen's Circle' white with a blue edge to the falls.
Name: Jan
Hustisford, WI
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Daylilies Dog Lover Irises Region: United States of America
Region: Wisconsin
Sep 4, 2011 7:06 AM CST
Love the idea! I have been raising my beds with this 'bullet' shaped bricks this year, and in fact just completed an iris only bed. I am glad to get the information on the compaction and stuff, thank you. I expect my iris will enjoy the raised bed better because of the better drainage, but. It is a good comment to keep an eye on them during the heat and dryness of some summers ~ Jan
Name: Polly Kinsman
Hannibal, NY (Zone 6a)

Charter ATP Member Region: United States of America I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Irises Lilies
Seller of Garden Stuff
Sep 4, 2011 8:14 AM CST

Gone But Not Forgotten

Just wanted to say hi to Jan. I've seen you over on DG, glad to see you here too.

Jerry, those look great! I think I would have to do something funky in them, like a bed with black and white irises, maybe some 50s or 60s color combos.
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Hummingbirder
Sep 4, 2011 3:35 PM CST
Gosh, I think that is really, really beautiful. Thumbs up What a fabulous idea I tip my hat to you.
Name: Jerry
Salem, IL
Charter ATP Member
Sep 4, 2011 4:54 PM CST
A couple more beds. The first is an oval of about 8 feet made for 2 new peonies. The irises are for filler until the peonies expand.
Thumb of 2011-09-04/Oldgardenrose/924bd7

The second is another bed made for 4 new peonies with alternating irises along the side until the peonies expand. It was made of leftovers from other projects and set up on a slope which drops a full 8 inches in 6 feet. These are just samples of how simple parts can be rather attractive just by using imagination. In this particular case, if the peonies like it as well as the irises, it should look nice in another 3 or 4 years.
Thumb of 2011-09-04/Oldgardenrose/cfafd3

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