RE: AIS: HYB: Geo. Waters' Bulletin Article
- Subject: RE: [iris] AIS: HYB: Geo. Waters' Bulletin Article
- From: "Steve Szabo" firstname.lastname@example.org
- Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2006 00:48:52 -0400
- Content-class: urn:content-classes:message
- List-archive: <http://www.hort.net/lists/iris/> (Web Archive)
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- Thread-topic: [iris] AIS: HYB: Geo. Waters' Bulletin Article
Sine I am not a member of the AIS, I do not receive the bulletin, and
have not read the article in question. However, based on what Anner says
in her post, I can make some comments.
I am not real familiar with plants either, but I do know fish and my
other half knows dogs. With the dogs, there have been certain problems
associated with certain breeds over time. In the length of time she has
been involved with dogs, she has seen these identified problems become
more prevalent, and more breeds suffering from problems particular to
With the fish, the fancier the variety, the more delicate it seems to
be. For example, the fancy guppies you see in the fish store have a much
more limited temperature range than do those that are commonly sold as
feeder fish. The same holds true with goldfish--the fancier the fish,
the less tolerance it has for changes in water parameters. Also, there
has been a reduction in the size of most species and varieties that are
heavily bred and readily available.
As to these problems being inevitable, they could probably be reversed,
and are not inevitable, if proper breeding procedures are followed.
However they are not. Inbreeding is quite common when trying to bring
certain traits to the forefront, and this has the propensity to bring
along the "good" genes as well as the "bad" genes in ever concentrating
amounts. The way to avoid this is by out crossing, where fish that are
not related, but may carry the same desired trait are bred. This does
have a tendency to dilute the genes from the desired result, and giving
one a smaller group to work with, and therefore more time to develop the
trait, but it also scatters the "bad" genes as well, making it less
likely the undesired traits will show.
From my discussions with the late Neil M. plant genes seem to work a bit
differently than animal genes, but I would suspect that the same
concentrating of "good" and "bad" genes occurs, eventually displaying
themselves as traits where a particular variety of iris will do well in
a part of the country, but not in another. It may also make them more
susceptible to parasites and diseases.
Again, probably not inevitable, but it will and does happen.
Just my two cents.
From: email@example.com [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of
Sent: Sunday, August 27, 2006 2:09 PM
Subject: [iris] AIS: HYB: Geo. Waters' Bulletin Article
In a message dated 8/26/2006 7:57:29 AM Eastern Standard Time,
<<<<Several articles caught my interest this time, but was most amazed
the George Waters "Food For Thought" article.
Yes. I expect some won't find the article great fun.
I do think it is essential that persons feel free to open discussions
these sorts of problems, especially those they consider "inevitable,"
susceptible to amelioration. In some quarters there is, I think, a
consider anyone who raises an awkward issue not quite an Iris team
mutterings about negativity or whatnot start, typically, I have
coming from some source whose own foibles would exasperate a wooden
Nobody signed a loyalty oath or a Pollyanna pledge when they joined
AIS, and we
can't learn anything from each other if we won't speak out.
I think it well the Editor listened to George Waters, and published
distinguished senior irisarian's concerns. I am not sure they would
as authoritative, and of such poignancy, coming from another source. I
distraught that Mr. Waters is having such disappointments, although I
confident his analysis of the situation has yielded unassailable
Our Editor must be saluted for recognizing the significance of this
Bruce Filardi has brought a richer variety to the Bulletin, and I am
enjoying it. From time to time we have heard a lot about making room in
for more interesting articles, but, as Clarence Mahan mentioned in this
forum back in 1996, the real problem has not been finding room in the
it has been finding those good articles in the first place. I have
What captured my attention in Mr. Waters' piece was his observation: "I
not studied plant breeding, but what I have read on the subject
that selection over many generations for decorative features inevitably
plants' immunity to diseases and pests." He opines that the conditions
hybridizers' gardens may "mask" problems which manifest later in the
"ordinary gardeners." There is some talk of test gardens of the past,
I wonder. I wonder a lot about that strong word, "inevitably." I wonder
Mr. Waters' observation is actually sound. I am ignorant, but I do
situation must be very complicated, indeed. Aside from anything else,
pests and diseases are also changing, adapting over many generations,
or so I'd
expect. No entity in nature, no phenomenon, no condition, exists in
isolation. I also wonder who those ordinary gardeners are, and what
expectations and skills are presumed to be.
I'll tell you, there is some question in my mind as to whether we
really expect the preponderance of hybrid irises to grow well
with the very best of culture. Were it not for a handful of bearded
not all of which are diploids, which, to their everlasting glory, do
nearly that, albeit not, in my experience, without leaf spot, I don't
we'd even think such a thing possible. We certainly would not assert
is the case with any other group of intensively hybridized ornamental
perennial garden plants. Nor, I observe, is it invariably true of many
non-hybridized ornamental plants, forms of species of many genera,
our horticultural consideration.
Which is not to say I don't think Waters' has raised a useful point:
comes to pest and disease resistance, more is better, all around, on
scores, and always will be so.
Richmond VA USA USDA Zone 7
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