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OT-BIO: Gary White

From: GWhite & LRader <bentfork@navix.net>

    My name is Gary White, and I am hailing from Lincoln, Nebraska where

my wife Linda and I have a 2+ acre property.  We moved to Lincoln about
5 years ago from Morgantown, West Virginia.  It took a couple of years
for us (and the hundreds of plants we brought with us) to adjust to the
Great Plains weather, soils, and temperature extremes over a year.  Its
been a challenge, but we've
settled in to this zone 4/5 part of the country and we like Lincoln very
much (especially since we've made many wonderful new iris friends here).

    I have been gardening since I was in high school 30 years ago, and
have lived with irises for as long as I can remember.  My mother grew
tall bearded irises and a couple of different siberians, though all were

unnamed in her garden.  I started acquiring my current collection of
irises in 1984 when we bought our first house in WV.  That collection
has grown to more than 500 cultivars, with about 300 beardeds and 200
beardless irises.  I guess I am a sucker for variety, since I grow about

all types of irises that is possible in this climate.  We grow all
classes of beardeds, over 100 cultivars of siberians, about 50 Japanese
(and some people told me we couldn't grow JI here in Nebraska - but they

bloomed wonderfully last year), about 10 Louisianas, 10 spurias (and
more on order), several species and inter-species crosses, and so far 1
arilbred (Omar's Gold, which was magnificent last year - but more ABs
are on order).  In the last couple of years, I've started to collect
some historic irises and really love them.  Its amazing to see the old
ones and how far we've come, but many of the antiques are still very
beautiful and they're hardy.  Besides, Nebraska has a very rich iris
history.  It was home to the Sass brothers and Lincoln was the home of
the first president of AIS.
    I am currently president of the Lincoln Iris Society, Show Chairman
of our annual iris shows, Treasurer of Region 21, and just became a
judge this winter (and am looking forward to judging, and voting for the

awards).  So you can see that I'm pretty well up to my eyeballs in
irises (and am constantly adding new beds to accommodate them).
    Aside from irises, we also grow daylilies (over 500 cultivars),
hostas, daffodils and other spring bulbs, clematis, peonies, many herbs
and other perennials.  Linda is very interested in sedums and herbs, but

she also spends a lot of time working on irises and the other perennials

we grow.  We have both been interested in plants for a long time and
both have Masters of Botany, and so the addiction continues unabated.
    I have been lurking on iris-list for a couple of weeks, but thought
it was time to join the fray and am looking forward to the
conversation.  I wish we were going to the AIS national convention, but
alas I have to work (and I'm already taking time off to go to Portland
for the Japanese Iris convention in June).  It sounds like there will be

a high time in OK at the geek dinner.  I am going to get one of those
t-shirts, though.

Thanks for listening to my first ramblings on-line!

Gary White,
    from Lincoln Nebraska, where its a glorious spring day and I'm off
to pick up my first pair of bifocals (that could be more challenging
than being a new iris judge)

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