After writing about adding more Baptisias and woody plants to the big bed to make less work, now I am going to write about making more work by keeping open areas of bearded iris among the Baptisias and roses. That sounds logical, right? :)
I'm doing this as a temporary measure because a) the beds around the house are still rich for bearded iris ~ many melted away in last year's very wet winter ~ and b) I love the look of Baptisia with iris.
It's a bit of work keeping the iris cleared of weeds and grass, but low-growing wild ageratum and native Ruellia help in the summer. Eventually there will be Baptisia and bearded iris combos in the gardens around the house and front yard and a predominant mix of Baptisias/ Siberian Iris/ roses/ and other woody plants in the big bed.
If RRD becomes a problem I can turn to native shrubs that I can propagate from what's already on the farm: Highbush Blueberry, Calycanthus, Winterberry, Golden St. John's Wort and Virginia Sweetspire.
I might to ahead and try to add more Siberian Iris divisions now; they've started to push up green shots and the ones I divided in November were able to root in and survive the winter.