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Re: What is a "landscape" iris?

  • To: Multiple recipients of list <iris-l@rt66.com>
  • Subject: Re: What is a "landscape" iris?
  • From: "Walter A. Moores" <wam2@Ra.MsState.Edu>
  • Date: Fri, 12 Dec 1997 10:24:24 -0700 (MST)

On Thu, 11 Dec 1997, Virginia Lassiter wrote:

> Hi all,
>  Enjoying every word of my first year packet of AIS journals!
> Winterberry Gardens [owner Spoons] mentioned breeding for
> "LANDSCAPE" irises. How are they different from other intros?
> Pros/cons of flower? vigor? height? color?
>  Thanks, Virginia

	Virginia Lassiter has posed a very good question about 'landscape'
irises which has gone unanswered on the Iris-l.  I answered Virginia
privately but think more input is needed.

	To quote the Winterberry Gardens' ad in the July'97 AIS Bulletin,
"These irises [landscape irises] have been selected after a twelve year
hybridizing program for superior disease resistance, vigor, winter
hardiness, sturdy stalks, minimal upkeep, good flower quality, and
maximim show of color in the landscape."

	I think the answer to Virginia's question might be contained in
the phrase 'maximum show of color in the landscape.'  In other words,
these are outdoor [garden] irises for the purposes stated above and are
not exhibition irises displayed on a show bench competing against others
for blue ribbons and Best Specimen of the Show.

	However,  in my experience the term 'landscape' irises has some 
bad connotations.  I have been to numerous sales where there have been
tables labeled 'landscape irises.'  Upon inquiring as to what these are,
the responses have been, "Oh, those are some of Mrs. Allen's that she lost
the tags on and wants to get rid of."  Or, "Those are some of Dr. Jones'
seedlings that he had culled and are good for 'landscaping'" [whatever
that means].  I have even heard, "Oh, that's an iris you throw in a gully
to stop erosion!"

	One would hope that every iris officially introduced was done so
because it reflected some advancement or showed some unique quality not
previously seen.  To introduce an iris as a 'landscape iris' seems to
defeat that purpose.

	The AIS Judges Training Handbook divides the manual into two
types of judging - exhibition and garden judging.  It seems more
appropriate to me to call 'landscape irises' garden irises, thus avoiding
the bad connations mentioned earlier.

	Walter Moores
	Enid Lake, 7/8 

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