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Re: CULT: HYB: growability

Since you saw that clump of IMMORTALITY doing so well in the south garden,
Linda, I moved a major hunk of it otherwise undisturbed as far to the north
end of iris ground here, with lots of fertility, fresh, virgin (relative to
irises) soil, and last year it had stalk after stalk.

This year the clump, along with everything else except a few, has foliage
burn from hot, wet weather.  The clump is sending up its second stalk,
instead of the two or three at a time as it did last year.  Even so, it
looks as good or better than many.  I've bent over and pulled weeds out of
it and away from it to reduce the competition for nutrients and to maximize
air movement around the fans.  I also cleaned out all the old remnants of
spring foliage, leaving the rhizomes a better chance to dry out.

As with you, weeds are out of hand.  Wet, and my surgical adventures again
this summer, have hampered the outdoor work.  Right now my resiliance is
such I can sit at the computer or sit and read, vacuum in an air-conditioned
house, talk animatedly with a theologically-oriented visitor, but getting
out and pulling more than a few weeds is out of bounds most days.

As to varieties doing especially well, both the -1 and -4 (I think, without
looking at labels) of the Immortality-Celebration Song seedlings look fine.
No rot, but not a lot of growth either, but without either lime or
fertilizer, not much else is growing very well either.

I dug a number of plants of a re-re-select Power Woman X Fogbound to send to
Denise Stewart at Snowpeak for evaluation and possible introduction, and was
astounded at the rampant growth of good root systems on the plants, even
though the tops didn't look like much.  Evidence of increase on its way was
really surprising.  That was R 19-2, photos of which from three different
perspectives are on the WebShots site I'm using.  I haven't a glimmer of a
name for it yet, but it has it all as far as I'm concerned--branching, form,
texture, color clarity and interest, etc.  I'm not too sure about bud count,
as I've never had a stalk I thought "normal" enough to count when I had
opportunity to do so.  Growing conditions for it have been too abnormal to
evaluate.  I did set a pod on it which matured from Brazenberry pollen.  The
latter has wonderful branching and bud count.  I think my own red-violets
have better form and substance, cleaner, clearer color, and an over-all
"neater" look but I sure can't complain about Brazenberry's performance or
quality over all.  No rot has shown in it either.

Another one that has done very well here is WINTRY SKY.  I have a
preponderance of Keppel varieties, as I have gotten the majority of my newer
things from him, but he sends me a sampler of others, and I did put in a
good order with Joe Ghio last year.  It is too soon to evaluate growth on
them, but I have lost only a couple, one of them over winter, one other this
summer.  I am especially interested in the various Fogbound offspring from
both Joe and Keith, as I see what Fogbound has done here.  I believe it to
be an all-time great parent "benchmark" iris from what I've seen so far.

I said so to Keith and he responded, "It's too early to say."  How like

Named varieties doing very well or exceptionally well--SEA POWER looks
fantastic, much to my surprise.  Not a single other blue is doing especially

So does Keppel's PARIS FASHION.  I'm losing Tour de France (ow!), Myterious
Ways is gone, and I've have had problems with Mastery.  Decadence is so-so,
but alive,  ALPENVIEW had about half the fans lose all their leaves leaving
bald rhizomes, but the remaining fans look very healthy.  I can't say that
about many others.  Alpenview and Paris Fashion, are, however, growing with
slightly better drainage than many others.  Sea Power is among the plants of
some suffering the worst.  That really says something about its growability.
I suspect it will be the 2006 Dykes, looking at the numbers on Wister this
year.  Refreshing to have a strong candidate do well!

In the seedlings, the Paris Fashion seedlings look as good as their mama.
There are some other crosses that are doing equally well.  Shoptalk has had
problems itself, but its seedlings are doing very well.  Lotus Land is a
total loss, I'm sorry to say, but its seedlings seem to be fine.
Happenstance is suffering but surviving in one area, thriving in another.
Vienna Waltz looks great in some plants, others a wipe out.

Swingtown is barely surviving, but I need to go to the garden with a pad to
say anything more, as I haven't been looking at labels, I'm just looking at
blank spaces where there are living rhizomes, no increase visible and not
one danged leaf left on any fans at all.  Warm rain gets down into the fan,
and just peels the leaves off the rhizomes.  Fan after fan has gone that way
on many varieties.  Even the SDB's are a near wipe out.

MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM is planted in too much shade to be blooming, as I
was hoping to get some increase that didn't bloom--each year every single
sizeable rhizome has sent up stalks.  This summer, I don't even see the
increase, but all the fans look very healthy.  Not a spot on them!  I'd be
willing to gamble it has some powerful genetic components that have to do
with what Anner and I both have commented upon--growability, although that
was the word both you, Linda, and I have used before.  Anner said it in a
more elegant manner.

Neil Mogensen  z 7  Reg 4  western NC mountains

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