About CLOWN PANTS' parents... as I usually do pollinations, I had removed the standards and the falls of Iris variegata and applied pollen that I'd frozen from Iris suaveolens var. mellita. So I am fairly certain about the parentage. However, I didn't cover that bloom... so theoretically... an insect could have also added pollen. Only one of the resulting seeds germinated and grew to maturity. My shadow of a doubt comes from that slight chance of an insect contamination coupled with a comment someone had made on one of the forums. When I first was posting pictures of CLOWN PANTS, before it even had a name, someone commented that it looked like just another variation of Iris variegata to them and asked if I was really sure of the parentage.
The flower color most likely was what triggered that comment. I had also expected that the variegata color pattern would be hidden by the anthocyanin (self-type) color of the mellita clone, just as it has been in these recent two variegata X rubromarginata seedlings. It is possible though, that the rubromarginata I'm now using is homozygous for the rusty reddish-purple while CLOWN PANTS' father (mellita) might have been heterozygous (a carrier of the pale yellow color). My conjecture is that this pale yellow might allow the variegata pattern to be seen. Maybe I'll get an answer to this theory someday. But a different clone of rubromarginata (assumedly heterozygous for flower color) gave me 50/50 (amoenas/purple selfs) when crossed with KUPARI (white pallida). So half suaveolens seedlings CAN certainly be free of anthocyanin in their standards.
Flower color aside... if that person could have also seen the growth habit, flowering season and flower-form of CLOWN PANTS, they might not have made that comment. It is definitely something different from a pure Iris variegata.
Still, that comment has stuck in my head all these years. And as always, I like to be nearly 100% sure that a hybrid is what I intended before I make strong claims about parentage. After seeing how many offspring of CLOWN PANTS have shown traits of suaveolens by having reverted back in one way or another (for example: height or narrow tucked falls), I am fairly confident now that my doubts have been unnecessary. It still would be nice to recreate the original cross exactly, to see a whole batch of variegata X mellita seedlings. Unfortunately I no longer have either parent clone, so seedlings like these recent four variegata X rubromarginata are as close as I can do right now.
It's funny how one comment from a skeptic can have such a lasting effect on someone... but in summary, I'm pretty darn sure now that CLOWN PANTS is what it's supposed to have been all along ;0)
Best wishes, Tom
From: "loic tasquier"
"as a confirmation or proof that CLOWN PANTS' parentage is correct"
so you are not 100% sure of Clown's Pants parents ?