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Re: Re: CULT: HYB: Good Irises

Sometimes identifying "good" irises after purchase is just as difficult. Our
climate in the Cincinnati area is widely variable. We will go along for several
years with cool springs and normal rainfall, cool with amazing amounts of rain, to
hot as some folks summers with very high humidity, or perfect springs except for
the one or two late freezes that turn rhizomes or developing blooms into mush.
Then you have cool wet summers for a few years followed by hot and humid summers
where the ground cracks due to near drought conditions for a few years. Some falls
give perfectly extended growing seasons while others have early killing frosts and
early onset winters. Some winters are not really cold at all, yet some have
extended periods of -20degree weather. Some years  I have had plants that
struggled for the first few years of maybe a hot dry summer look absolutely
gorgeous at dig time during a wetter cooler summer, and other varieties just the
reverse. With all the possible permutations and combinations of seasonal weather
averages and extremes it is nearly impossible to select for surefire growability,
and often those that do adapt best to the widest conditions are often of the
plainer and less exciting patterns and colors. Gardening in general seems to be
like playing Texas Hold'em--no matter how good of a player you are and how good
your instincts, sometimes you just don't get the right cards.

John Bruce

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Linda Mann" <lmann@volfirst.net>
> The longer I grow irises, the more I breed my own, the more I talk to
> people in different regions/soils/climates, the more I view the task of
> identifying 'good' irises <before> purchase as hopeless.

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