Thursday, June 12, 2008

Historic Tall Bearded Iris 'SUSAN BLISS'

Whitelegg-Orpington Chislehurst, Kent, 1923-1924.
Lovely pink iris, strongly recommended. Flowers exquisite shade of lilac rose, very freely produced on strong branching spikes. 3' 6". This and 'Dream' are best of pale pink varieties

A.H Burgess and Son, Waikanae Wellington, 1929 catalogue.
SUSAN BLISS-- An exquisite pink-toned Iris. Well shaped flowers of a delicate shade of pale lilac rose. One of the best. Mid-season 3 ft.

Irises grown by Robert Wayman, Bayside, New York, 1930-1931.
SUSAN BLISS 85-86 (Bliss 1922) 40 inches. Six years ago you could not have brought one plant of this one variety alone for the price of this entire collection. Its introduction created quite a sensation, and it has proven worthy of all its notoriety it has attained, for it is a most exquisite Iris. The orchid pink toned flowers are of perfect form and bloom profusely on stout erect stems. 75c each; 3 for $2.00, 6 for $3.50, 100 for $50.00

Peonies and Irises, Lee R. Bonnewitz Van Wert, Ohio, 1928.
SUSAN BLISS (Bliss) Susan Bliss, Aphrodite, and Mrs. Marion Cran, have been selected by growers as the three best Irises approaching pink in color, and this variety is so beautiful that we wish to use nearly our entire stock of it for propagation purposes. $1.50

Puget Sound Iris catalog 1929.
An exquisite pink toned iris. Large flowers of a delicate shade of pale lilac rose. When grouped in the border, the flowers appear to be a uniform shade of pure light rose-pink. Free flowering and of robust constitution, very tall, each spike bearing three to four flowers open at the same time. One of the very finest, 3 feet.

Quality Gardens, Freeport, Illinois, Iris 1929.
A uniform shade of deep rose pink. Beard light orange, adds a very pleasing colour tone. Very free flowering and of robust constitution. Very tall spike bearing 4-5 flowers open at the same time. Flower is beautifully shaped and of great substance. 3' 6" tall Rhizomes are always small . Strongly recommended.

The Iris Year Book, 1942 Bearded Flag Irises- An Initial Thirty By F. Wynn Hellings
SUSAN BLISS. A "pink" which must be considered "old" as Irises are old. Its best points are freedom of flowering and increase, shapeliness of bloom and cleanness of colour. The branching is fairly good and the fact that it comes quite late in the season with Ambassadeur, Shah Jehan, etc. is a recommendation. About 3 ft. 3 in. in height.

AIS Bulletin #43 April, 1932."Irises Raised or Introduced by A.J.Bliss",by E. A. S. Peckham; page. 32
SUSAN BLISS was the other iris receiving most attention, and rightly so, for here was a great advance in the pink section. Mr. Mead said of SUSAN BLISS, "The next nearest to pink and most valuable of this class to date is SUSAN BLISS which is a most appealing, creamy pink tone. It is a tall Iris, from thirty-six to forty inches and of splendid carriage, fine form and substance. The standards are cone-shaped and resolute and slightly ruffled. The beauty of the flaring falls is enhanced by a fine yellow beard. The flower is a good size and as it has three flowers open at a time it would be very effective in mass." Mr. Mead's words were prophetic, for it is so, and SUSAN BLISS at the present time is one of our best irises of the pink group as it is a good grower, free bloomer and blends well with almost any color. This was a child of PHYLLIS BLISS.

Rainbow Fragments : A List of better varieties.
SUSAN BLISS (Bliss 1922) A soft pink-toned self
Excellence..In color, form.
Color...........Lilac to mallow pink of good quality
Form...........Good of spreading type.
Haft............With light mallow purple reticulations.
Beard..........Dense; Creamy yellow
Spathes......Scarious,purplish gray
Foliage........Broad and stiff; glaucous green
Growth.......Vigorous with good increase
Stalk...........Erect, low branched to 39"
Bloom.........Moderately free
Time...........Mid Season
Remarks....Quite a favorite among the lighter pink-toned varieties.

1939 AIS Checklist
SUSAN BLISS TB-M-R9L (Bliss 1922) Phyllis Bliss X Diadem

Susan Bliss is available in America and you could try Superstition Gardens and our English visitors could give Seagate Irises a call.
Thanks for the photos of Susan Bliss taken in the last week or so.
Photo Credit and copyright  Anne Milner, Meadow House, holder of the National Collection  Introductions of Arthur J Bliss sanctioned by NCCPG.

Update 2012 
 Anne Milner who has the Plant Heritage National Collection of Bliss Irises since 2008 now has a web site of her collection plus much more information and is well worth a visit.
Click here

©2008 - 2016 HERITAGE IRISES. All rights reserved. Unauthorized copying or storage of this website's content is prohibited without prior written permission. Terry Johnson in association with The Iris Hunter,What Have You Productions and 15 out of 7 Design.