Corner Iris Garden Is Easy To Make

By Newyorkrita
May 11, 2015

Grouping tall bearded iris plants in a front corner added a favorite focal point to an underused spot.

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May 10, 2015 7:42 PM CST
Thread OP
Name: Jane
Tobyhanna, PA (Zone 5a)
The "Garden" is my Happy Place!
Garden Ideas: Master Level
Very pretty and a great idea. A question though. Do deer or groundhogs eat irises?
May 10, 2015 7:45 PM CST
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 Photo Contest Winner: 2016
I don't know since I don't have either of those here thank goodness!
May 10, 2015 9:35 PM CST
Name: Marilyn, aka "Poly"
South San Francisco Bay Area (Zone 9b)
"The mountains are calling..."
Region: California Daylilies Irises Vegetable Grower Moon Gardener Dog Lover
Bookworm Garden Photography Birds Pollen collector Garden Procrastinator Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Here in CA, the deer do not bother the irises.

Gophers, however, will eagerly dine on the rhizomes. I once had two patches of 'Arctic Express' mirrored across a path. Suddenly I started losing irises from one of the clumps. We caught the culprit in the act, literally, sucking an iris fan down a hole. Grumbling

After that, we put irises in that spot into gopher baskets, but they are imo a real danger as they are a tripping hazard. (I once tripped on one of them, and if someone hadn't been there to catch me, I would have probably whacked my head on a stepping stone, as I was definitely going down.) Moreover, the irises try to grow through the basket, which makes division a nightmare, and it is my gut feel (from observation here) that plants just generally do not perform to their full potential in these things.

Irises in other parts of the garden are not in gopher baskets, and they seem to do okay. You just need to be aware of what critters are active where, and erect defenses accordingly. (I have read about people lining their beds with wire mesh, and I think that is what I am going to do the next time we replant iris in a potentially hazardous spot. (For that matter, that is what I am planning to do with some hosta.) I don't plan on letting the wire edges stick up, though, as in the case of the gopher baskets.)

As for groundhogs, sorry, no experience here. As they are a burrowing rodent, my kneejerk reaction is to be suspicious of them.... but I Google searched on groundhogs and irises, and at least two sites seemed to indicate that groundhogs don't eat irises (even though they may burrow right under them).

Since we are talking critters, I should mention that last fall a raccoon more or less dug up part of my patch of my sole iris seedling. They didn't eat the rhizomes, and (so far as I can tell) all of the rhizomes that I replanted bloomed this spring, but just an fyi.... critters can be annoying and destructive in other ways, apart from eating things.

Best wishes for you and your irises!
Evaluating an iris seedling, hopefully for rebloom
May 11, 2015 7:14 AM CST
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River Twp, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member Bee Lover Butterflies Birds I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Seed Starter Vegetable Grower Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters
I agree that deer don't seem to bother iris -- but I'm afraid I don't have any experience with groundhogs, either.
“Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer
C/F temp conversion
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