Monday, June 16, 2014


Winter Olympics is an iris of excellent quality, an absolute classic, and a much deserved multi award winner. A very clean healthy grower with great clump forming vigour. Plenty of blooms held on strong stems that can withstand most weather conditions. A tough but beautiful Iris with great attributes  making a great  Iris for beginners. It is also very fertile both ways and sets pods easily.  Many irisarians and home gardeners are happy to have just one white iris but you can't lump me in with that crowd. I've said it before and I'll say it again, all gardens can never have enough 'White Irises', they give a balance that is unbeatable and after all nothing clashes with white.
Photo taken in the morning mist. The tiny water droplets in the mist make the light scatter which greatly softens the background giving a painted on canvas texture look. I quite like it!

Bulletin of the American Iris Society, January, 1963. Number 168.
Northwest Impressions, Joseph Gatty.
Prior to meeting Tom and Opal I had heard nothing but good reports of their white seedling out of  POET'S DREAM X ELEANOR'S PRIDE. I was not disappointed. WINTER OLYMPICS, as this seedling is now called, and ready for introduction in '63, is a white-white that lacks nothing in perfection of form, substance or branching. A good fifty-foot row of this variety displayed remarkable non-variation in number of branches per stalk, buds, and plant vigor. However, it is the flower of WINTER OLYMPICS that remains with one long after viewing it-that large but graceful white flower that has lost none of the grace that too often disappears with size; its ruffled elegance coupled with substance that indicates it was bred to withstand the elements.

Bulletin of the American Iris Society, July, 1963. Number 170.
Iris Trek, 1963 Robert S. Carney. Observations of Irises irises which were performing nicely in the gardens visited before the convention in Denver, 1963.
WINTER OLYMPICS (O. Brown). An outstanding new white self with matching beard. Good form and beautifully branched. Said to be a good increaser.
William T. Bledsoe, Fayetteville, Tennessee
WINTER OLYMPICS, by Opal Brown, and WHITE PRIDE, by Dr. Branch. Both are very fine white selfs, and I compared them on four separate days to try to choose between them, so I have placed them in a tie on my
personal score. WINTER OLYMPICS has classic branching, four branches and a terminal. WHITE PRIDE has three branches and the terminal, but it seems to me to be ruffled in a slightly more appealing manner. Both are terrific.

Bulletin of the American Iris Society, July, 1963. Number 170.
They liked these in the Tour Gardens, Roy Oliphant, Berkeley, California
WINTER OLYMPICS (Opal Brown). This lovely ruffled white with a hint of cream and green, will hold up its head (or should I say heads-for it made an outstanding clump) in any company.

Bulletin of the American Iris Society, July 1964, Number 174.
Reports From Region 15-Southern California. WHITES. Mrs. Archie Owen.
WINTER OLYMPICS (Opal Brown '63). Flowers large, pure white with a white beard. The standards are ruffled and the falls heavily ruffled. Stalk sturdy and well branched. A beautiful iris especially when you see three
flowers at one time on a well-branched stalk.

Cooleys Gardens, Silverton, Oregon. Iris Catalog 1965. 
WINTER OLYMPICS (O. Brown, '63) Each $22.50
Domed standards and extra wide falls with elegant ruffling are features of this sensational new white Iris. It was the leader in the "Judges' Choice" in 1964 and was likewise first among those which won the HM Award of the AIS last year. Will be hard to beat!

Region 14 Northern California, Nevada, Regional Bulletin, Fall 1966.
1966-An Iris Season in Review, Joe Ghio.
Another bloom season has come and gone. Without a doubt this was the finest iris season we have ever experienced in Santa Cruz.the growth was fantastic; the height and size of the blooms was unbelievable. The weather cooperated as never before. Generally, the days were rainless,windless, and mild. The first tall beardeds opened early in April and a few blooms were still around at the end of May. If only every year could be like this one! Wow!
WHITES; this was the year of WINTER OLYMPICS (O. Brown, '63). Planted here and there throughout our gardens, this tremendous Iris never failed to put on a fantastic show. Tall, well branched with fabulously formed flowers of pure white. An Iris which has everything one could wish. How can it fail to get the Dykes when it is eligible?

The Iris Yearbook (BIS), 1970,"The newer American Introductions ", page 63, R.A.Wise.
Winter Olympics (O. Brown, 1963). This new white self is highly rated in America and was the Dykes medal winner in 1967. The individual flowers are heavily ruffled with domed standards and extrawide semi-flaring falls. The stems are well branched and the bud count it is very high so that there is a tendency for rather too many flowers to be out at once, thus spoiling the appearance of the spike. The plant is a strong grower in this garden and contrary to some reports does not appear to be rot prone.

Browns Sunnyhill Gardens, Milton Freewater, Oregon. 1972 Iris.
WINTER OLYMPICS (O. Brown, '63) Beautiful white self including beard. Domed standards are ruffled and firmly held.Extra wide falls are intensely ruffled and gracefully arched. Large flowers of heavy substance. Near perfect branching. Fertile both ways. A M '66, Rees Award '66, Dykes Medal '67.

AIS Checklist 1969.
WINTER OLYMPICS    (Opal Brown, R. 1961). Sdlg. 9-5A7. TB 37" E-M. WlW.    White self; white beard. Poet's Dream X Eleanor's Pride., Brown's Sunnyhill Gardens 1963. HC 1961, HM 1964, AM 1966, JC 1964, 1965, Clara Rees Cup 1966, Nelson Award 1969, Dykes Medal 1967.

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