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Re: HIST: old IB

From: "Jeff and Carolyn Walters" <cwalters@digitalpla.net>

Dan Mason writes:

> The "Bowers unknown" from Betty and Glenn Bowers of
> Pennsylvania in the "unknown" section of the Historical part
> of the above website is very similar to the old IB which I
> wrote recent messages about as growing better (less problem
> with borers) when not cleanly cultivated.


The AIS recognizes three classes of bearded irises with stalks taller than
the upper limit for SDB's (15") and shorter than the lower limit for TB's
(28"). They are the Border Beardeds (BB's), Intermediate Beardeds (IB's),
and the Miniature Tall Beardeds (MTB's). As the defining characteristic of
IB's among these three classes is that they bloom before the TB's, your
iris is almost certainly not an IB by current definition. Most of the
older, smaller-flowered diploid bearded irises are now classified as MTB's.

> This local IB when blooming I have noticed near several
> homes along the main highway at this west end of the Rainy
> River Valley. In the eastern end of the district and in Ft.
> Frances I've noticed many homes growing a similar iris, only
> the falls are more brick reddish than purplish, the plants
> are slightly taller, and bloom several days later.

These "eastern" irises sound like a derivative of I. variegata, perhaps the
widely grown cultivar, HONORABILE (Lemon, 1840). I am less able to
speculate as to the identity of the iris you are growing.

Jeff Walters in northern Utah  (USDA Zone 4, Sunset Zone 2)

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