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New member

I am new to iris-l and also new to the Internet, e-mail, listserves and
everything else which I am learning about very quickly!

My name is Graham Spencer - I am from Croftway Nursery, a family run
specialist nursery on the West Sussex coast in England.
We grow a full range of hardy perennials, including about 26,500 bearded
irises in about 350 varieties - mostly TB. About one third of the varieties
we have are pre-1960, the rest are younger, mostly 1980 on. We send them all
over the UK and Europe.
We also grow beardless irises (especially siberians). Besides irises we grow
lots of hardy Geraniums [=Cranesbills] (over 100 varieties), and we have
breeding and development programmes for Penstemon and Osteospermum.
We have been growing plants here since 1988. Our climate is mild (coldest
winter night most years about -5C, down to -12C last year!) and fairly moist,
but not wet (about 750mm rain each year). Our soil is a stony clay - not
great, but could be a lot worse.
I am particularly interested in the following:
* new bearded cultivars, esp. TB, BB, IB
* classic TB and IB cultivars, esp. those that have won awards
* irises raised by Cedric Morris
* siberian irises (all shapes, sizes, age and colour!)
* anything "different"
We are also looking at the possibility of getting plant health certification
for sending irises to the US and Canada. This is expensive, and we're not
sure how much demand there would be (air freight charges are likely to be
high) - so I would like to hear from anyone who is interested in getting
bearded iris plants from Europe.
I'm also keen to hear from anyone who is really doing something different
with irises - it seems to me that development of bearded irises has not
thrown up any really stunning new breaks in recent years. Development of red
irises sounds exciting, but genetically engineered plants have lots of
restrictions in the UK and EU - you need a licence just to grow them, let
alone sell them!

I'm looking forward to getting to know some new people thorugh iris-l....I
look forward to hearing from you.

Graham Spencer
Croftway Nursery, UK
e-mail: croftway@aol.com

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