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SHOW: Grooming Seedlings

In a message dated 2/9/2006 4:31:52 PM Eastern Standard Time,  
jbruce1@cinci.rr.com writes:

<<Now that is interesting...we had seedlings at one of our shows  that were
groomed except that the spent floewers were left on. The  exhibitor was told 
was not proper, that they should be exactly as they  were in the garden. 
Could this be a preference of the individual judge?  >>
John, did you ever get an answer on this one? I have dug out my copy of  the 
Judge's Handbook. The bottom line is grooming is not an issue in the  judging 
of seedlings on the bench. The iris as a hopefully distinctive  floral entity 
and potential introduction is being evaluated, not the show  skills of the 
exhibitor. Here (p. 73) is the passage from the  section which deals with TB 
seedlings. This is the 1998 revision which I guess  is the current one...
"Grooming plays *no* part in the evaluation of seedlings as the judge is  
evaluating the quality of the iris stalk and  flower - not the skills of  the 
exhibitor. In order t facilitate evaluation of branching and bud count,  spent 
flowers should remain in place or be only partially removed, leaving at  least 
the ovary visible."
So, I'd say you should remove any spent blossoms that are not  fully 
dried--gummy things, nasty drippy things--but do so in such a way  that the salient 
characteristics of the plant are neither distorted nor  obscured. 
Anner Whitehead
Richmond VA USA

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