Friday, October 18, 2013

Tall Bearded Iris LOYAL DEVOTION

This is a very early blooming Tall Bearded Iris which is always a worry as 'we at home' are still in the peak Nor-westerlies season. Just two days ago wind gusts of 170kph arrived then left and I spent the next days cutting up two large 8 metre olive trees that were completely levelled, so bloom stalks on tall bearded irises were completely out of their league, I am still finding horizontal bloom stalks.
Can't say this is my favourite time of the year coming back home to find mother nature has been so bloody ruthless, but as the saying goes 'every garden path has its puddle'.
'Loyal Devotion' with its appropriate name opened its stunning medium blue bloom this morning similar in colour  to 'Color Me Blue' (Schreiner '97) but a more earlier 80's classic form.
My understanding is that this iris was never well distributed internationally so its kinda a real surprise to have it growing in New Zealand and it has completely disappeared from New Zealand commercial catalogues which is a shame as early light blues that can endure strong winds are rarer than rocking horse droppings .

Contemporary Views, 1988, Perry Dyer. Tall Beardeds by Color Group; Light Blues.
LOYAL DEVOTION (Waltermire 1982) was as good as it has ever been; looking good in virtually every garden. I don’t know what the Spences have in that soil of theirs, but I have never seen ‘Loyal Devotion’ with such a true blue. The branching is rather close to the stalk, but the flowers open without touching the stalk, and it looks good on the show bench. The timing of the bloom sequence in a clump is especially good, assuring a long season of bloom.

Contemporary Views, 1992, Perry Dyer, Dark Horse Award Runner sup.
One of the bluest true-blues in the kingdom is the Tall Bearded LOYAL DEVOTION (Waltermire 1982), a pure, crystalline clearwater blue displayed on an acceptable stalk with good bud count. The entire flower is diamond-dusted, which further enlivens the flower. Plant habits are beyond reproach.

Bay Blooms Nurseries, Cambridge Road, Tauranga Spring / Summer 1996 Catalogue.
One of the bluest of the blues we have ever grown. Super ruffled light blue with excellent branching and good growth. Flowers early in the season.

AIS Checklist 1989
LOYAL DEVOTION   C. Waltermire, Reg. 1981. Sdlg. CW 77-2. TB 30" (76 cm) EM.     Ruffled light blue; white beard. Sapphire Hills X Full Tide., Contemporary Gardens 1982. Honorable Mention 1984.

As usual, clicking the above image will take you to the larger, higher resolution version.
Photo credit and copyright Iris Hunter. 


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