irislover
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Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 6:04 pm
Location: North Dakota

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My first time on this forum, but definitely not my last. Hubby and I are retired with a 5 year old canary as our only child. I enjoy gardening, making jewelry, reading, and just being outdoors.

After moving to North Dakota from Colorado, the last 8 years have been spent in an apartment with no good light for growing anything. In January we were forced out by the sale of the apartment building to be turned into county offices. Now we are in a leased mobile home and I can become a gardener again.

The 14 by 70 foot house runs north to south, with the front door on the east, so we get the morning sun. I want to start with a 10 foot by 2 foot border along the house. I have to keep it narrow because of physical limitations. My focus flower is the tall beared iris, which I grew successfully in Colorado. Favorite colors are blue and white. I will do zonal geraniums in pots for an 8 by 8 foot deck we are having built with handicapped steps to obtain better access to the front door .

The garden books and magazines leave me dizzy with their suggestions and variety of plants. Even the "small gardens" are larger than our entire lot. 2 feet does not leave much for a variety of heights, but it must do. And so many of the catalogues do not have much selection for our zone 3 climate.

Can anyone help with such a narrow border? I feel like I have forgotten everything I knew about borders. :roll:

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Jess
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Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 11:50 pm
Location: England

Hi irislover. :D

I cannot recommend plants for you as I have no idea what would be hardy in a zone 3 (so cold!) but when planting up such a narrow strip try and keep it very simple. Limit the types of plants you use. I would have 3 of something that were taller than your irises and preferably grown for their foliage rather than flowers to make your strip look lush then choose something low growing to plant all the way along the front of the border. Irises in the middle and between...What do you think? Just my suggestions. Maybe you garden differently in America. :roll:
Knowing without doing is like plowing without sowing."

irislover
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Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 6:04 pm
Location: North Dakota

Jess, thank you for your suggestions. Since beared iris are themselves tall, will really have to look for something to go between them at the back. A front edging will be no problem.

By the way, where are you? Since you mention America, I am assuming either England or Canada.

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Jess
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Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 11:50 pm
Location: England

irislover wrote:Jess, thank you for your suggestions. Since beared iris are themselves tall, will really have to look for something to go between them at the back. A front edging will be no problem.

By the way, where are you? Since you mention America, I am assuming either England or Canada.
England. Zone....lovely and warm...8/9.
So nothing taller than the iris? Is that because you would block windows?
That would look nice with just the irises and something else at the back. Hope someone comes up with the something else! :D
Knowing without doing is like plowing without sowing."

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