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AIS:Popularizing non-TB Irises

From: StorYlade@aol.com

In a message dated 12/05/1999 5:42:47 PM Central Standard Time, 
BigAlligator@aol.com writes:

<< Betty,
      Down here, this is not a case of pulling people away from TB Irises.  
 is convincing them that some Irises can be grown here.  There is a large 
 potential for growth for AIS in the zones that do not support TB Irises to 
 any extent once gardeners find Louisianas.
      If I find some TB's that will grow here, so much the better.


I understand your problem.  Yours is a different situation than many of those 
described on the list.  Still, I believe education is the best answer for 
most problems of acceptance.  Floridians need education to accept other forms 
of irises. (I once thought rebloomers might work there since their need for a 
chill appears to be less.)

The TB is the most 'recognized' iris through most/much of the U. S.  Although 
I, too, have personal opinions, I would hesitate to venture a guess as to why 
that is true.  Perhaps because they are so 'showy'?  I can say that I fell in 
love with them at the age of 14.  The old bi-tone blue TB's peered from many 
gardens in my rural area, as they do here in Kentucky.  I don't recall seeing 
the other types of irises until I joined the AIS years later.

While selling irises to the general public and working with the local 
club/shows, I've had the opportunity to talk with many 'regular gardeners'.  
Most do not wish to grow any type of iris because they find them labor 
intensive.  In other words, they don't bloom long enough for the amount of 
care they require.  This was my perfect lead-in for tales of rebloom.  At my 
insistence, several rebloomers were included in the local display garden.  
Now, many people in the area grow rebloomers.  

Still, I run across people that just have to tell me about the irises they've 
seen blooming this fall.  Just last week, my neighbor stood staring at my 
seedling bed in awe.  Said she couldn't believe what she'd been seeing this 
fall.  (She's 80.) 

As we have been seeing on the favorites survey, some things--both type and 
individual varieties--will not grow everywhere.  But for those that will?  
Three things are needed to increase the popularity of non-TB irises-- 
Education, education, and education.  ;)  

It might be worth remembering--for every 100 people that like irises there 
are 100 reasons for that like/love.  Wouldn't it would be incredibly dull if 
we all liked exactly the same things?

Betty from BG KY.  Slowly climbing the ladder back into the loft.  

P>S> If they bloomed earlier, Lousianias would be my favorite iris.  They 
have incredible color and grace.  

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