Thursday, October 29, 2009

Grannies Bonnets among the Tall bearded Iris

Seems like it stopped raining at home for no more than an Hour, the Aquilegia's are just loving it but the Irises are not so keen with the constant rain. I'm so glad I am just judging Irises this week-end and not showing.

Photo credit and copyright Iris Hunter

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Tall Bearded Historic Iris "GLACIER "

Many white irises are now on show, but so many damaged by the rain and with more rains to come this is not going to be a great bloom season for the early varieties. Despite the weather 'Glacier' a French raised variety has managed to keep its head up, and a variety taller than most, is liked a lot. 47 years old and I have always considered 'Glacier' to be a significant transitional iris from the classic form to the more modern form of white Iris blooms. It does however slowly revert back to the older form the older the blooms become.

AIS Checklist 1969

GLACIER R Cayeux, 1962 TB 37" M, Large White self, pale yellow beard. (Claude Cayeux x Jane Phillips) X Blue Throat.,

Photo credit and copyright Iris Hunter

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Sunday, October 18, 2009

Tall Bearded Historic Iris "LOS ANGELES "

The heirloom iris 'Los Angeles' flowering in the rain at home today, its the sibling to the Dykes Medal winning plicata 'San Francisco' but a much better grower, and sure is a sight to behold.

Robert Wayman Bayside, New York. Catalog for 1930-31 

LOS ANGELES (Mohr-1927)
This new giant "plicata" bloomed for the first time in my garden in 1929. $10.00 each

Quality Gardens, Iris, Freeport, Illinois. Iris 1933
Foreword, 'A little gossip about Iris'

The curious and interesting part of it is the fact that the buying public, the rank and file of people who grow irises in their gardens for their own pleasure so often disagree decidedly with official awards. As an example the first American award of the Dykes medal was made to San Francisco, first of the giant plicata's. Its sister seedling, Los Angeles outsells it year in and year out by a wide margin. The selection of the 50 and 100 best Irises by the accredited judges of the American Iris society also places Los Angeles ahead of San Francisco. This should not be taken as at all discounting San Francisco, a great and wonderful Iris, finest of the giant plicata type, but shows the fallibility of official ratings.
LOS ANGELES (Morh 1927) M. 46" Fragrant. Great white flowers of fine shape and texture ; the standards faintly edged blue, falls beautifully marked red brown at the base and the blue style arms lend a note of clear colour to the centre. One of the most beautiful irises we list. It is perfectly hardy and has stood in our garden for years unprotected.

Stevens Bros, Bulls. Catalogue of Irises 1937-38

LOS ANGELES (Morh-Mitchell)
Snowy white standards and falls with a slight stitching of coerulean at the haft, and clear blue style arms, Los Angeles is an exquisitely sculptured beauty with the finest satin sheen. It is tall, vigorous, and well branched- a classic Iris that is a cornerstone in any collection worthy of the name 3½ ft.

Carl Salbach Iris and Selected Seed Catalog, Berkeley, California, 1937

LOS ANGELES (Morh-Mitchell) This giant plicata, introduced with the Dykes medal winner San Francisco alternates in favour with the latter- one person preferring Los Angeles, the next San Francisco. Los Angeles has more white and less of the blue plicata markings than San Francisco and is a good doer everywhere. Great white flowers of fine shape and substance, the standards faintly edged blue with the blue style arms adding a note of clear blue in the centre. Tall and widely branched. Most outstanding. Early. 40 inch. $0.25 ; 3 for $.60

The Iris Year Book 1942,
Bearded Flag Irises-An Initial Thirty.By F. Wynn Hellings.
LOS ANGELES. Although reputedly tender in some districts, probably on account of its mesopotamica blood, it has never given me any trouble or demanded any special treatment. My favourite among plicatas and superior to any in sheer aristocratic beauty. The large white flowers on 4 feet stems, have a reddish flush on the fall hafts and the blue style-arms add piquancy. It is free flowering, increases rapidly, and is quite a healthy Iris.

Tell’s Iris Gardens, Iris Catalog and Hybridizers handbook, Provo, Utah, 1951.

LOS ANGELES (Morh-Mitchell 1927) M. (Conquistador x Parisiana) x (Esplendido) Lightly marked white plicata. Splendid parent, good blood for blues, whites, and plicatas. AM '44

AIS 1939 Checklist

LOS ANGELES TB-M-W2 (Mohr-Mitchell 1927): ((Conquistador x Parisiana) x Esplendido)

Photo credit and copyright Iris Hunter

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Sunday, October 11, 2009

2010 Bearded Iris Calendar.



"Great Christmas Gift"
Not one of those small desktop calendars for a big price, its a large calendar for a very reasonable price. Folds out to A3 size which is 297mm × 420m or 11.7'' × 16.5''
$19.50 (NZD) plus $2.00 postage and packing for New Zealand customers or $4.00 for overseas postage.

Wendy Begbie
Amazing Iris Garden
292 Busby Road,
Web Site

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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Iris germanica



Pictured above flowering at home today I. germanica var. vulgaris, an historic garden variety, and is a Natural Hybrid, recorded as been cultivated in gardens for centuries.

Published 1924
I. germanica (species Linnaeus 1753)
This is no individual variety but an abstraction from a group of varieties which agree in the following characters ; Leaves of some length in winter ; flower stems liable to destruction by frost before the emerge from the leaves ; stems bearing a terminal head of two flowers, a lateral branch three or four inches long and between them another short stemmed head or two ; spathes scarious in the upper half, green more or less flushed with purple at the base ; capsules narrow, oblong, triangular in section; seeds very few, oval not flattened; standards usually a little paler than the hafts and often bearing a few straggling hairs on the haft.

The nearest approach to a wild form seems to be I.kochii Kerner (1887) a rather dwarf plant not growing to a height of much more than two feet with rich red purple flowers of particularly smooth outline, not unlike that of albicans, and without any white ground showing between the thick brownish veins at the end of the haft.
Seedlings of I. germanica are difficult to obtain and are usually dwarf, with some of the characteristics of I aphylla. It might be supposed that all the varieties of I. germanica arose by the hybridisation of I aphylla but the other parent is unknown. It would probably have to possess spathes which were, at any rate partly scarious and the habit of making new growth in the autumn which would persist through the winter
In milder climates than ours, such as that of California I. germanica is capable of almost continuous growth and perpetual flowering, for blooms appear at odd times throughout the year

Photo Credit and copyright Iris Hunter

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