In a message dated 96-12-25 22:07:25 EST, you write:
>Isn't the state flower of Tennessee the iris? Surely the state flower
>will grow there?
I. pallida and germanica grow wild around old housesites, cemeteries, and
roadsides, at least in east Tennessee, so I always thought that was how iris
came to be the state flower. I hadn't realized that Tennessee was such a
hotbed of hybridizing 50 yrs ago - yes, bearded iris (and Japanese, and
Siberians, and Louisianas, and probably others) grow very well here and
everybody is nuts about iris. I was just tormenting Clarence - giving him a
little bit of opportunity to make up for for leaving us out of his praise of
all regions of the country for being great for iris. : ) (It seems to have
worked : ))
My 'quest' is for 'modern' iris that will grow here with zero care like
pallida and germanica - a goal that I have come to recognize is unrealistic.
However, some of the older iris, like MULBERRY ROSE and WABASH come close.
Also, both pallida and germanca are early bloomers, so don't bloom very
often in my frost pocket - I would settle for a yard full of late blooming
pallida! : ).
But look where this unrealistic quest has taken me - to helping start a new
iris club, this iris list, growing seedlings from airlbreds, trying out all
sorts of other kinds of iris, and a garden full of irises that may not grow
like pallida but will live and bloom with a little bit of care and are
So yes, iris DO grow in Tennessee. My apologies if I gave the impression
they don't. Some of us do call it iris purgatory, however.
Linda Mann firstname.lastname@example.org east Tennessee USA