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Re: Selection Mechanisms

  • To: Multiple recipients of list <iris-l@rt66.com>
  • Subject: Re: Selection Mechanisms
  • From: "Jeff and Carolyn Walters" <cwalters@cache.net>
  • Date: Wed, 5 Feb 1997 20:30:51 -0700 (MST)

Sharon McAllister writes (5 Feb 97):

> Food for thought:
> If individuals observe which varieties are gardenable in their own areas,
> who produced them, then buy new varieties produced by that hybridizer,
> same economic forces can be harnessed in favor of gardenability.  It's
> demand-side economics.

This advice is great in theory, but there are some practical problems in
implementing it:
     1) One swallow does not make a summer. Therefore, it is necessary to
grow a number of introductions by a particular hybridizer (four, eight,
ten?) before you can be justified in condemning his or her entire output as
unsuitable for your growing conditions. This can amount to a considerable
outlay in time, money, and energy. However, once it is obtained, by
whatever means, it is useful knowledge. For example, I believe I have
enough experience trying to grow Joe Gatty's TB introductions to realize
that it is not rational to try any more.
     2) All, or even an overwhelming majority, of a hybridizer's
introductions are not necessarily either good or bad growers. Most
Schreiners introductions grow well for me, but more than an insignificant
few are total duds. Most Ghio introductions do not grow very vigorously for
me, but more than just a few are perfectly acceptable.

     3) Even locally hybridized iris are not necessarily dependable. Melba
Hamblen's iris (hybridized within 50 miles of here as the crow flies - if
crows fly above 10,000 ft) do not perform consistently well in my garden.
In fact rather more are sub par growers than otherwise, although some are
among the best I have grown.

     4) What grows for my neighbor may not do well for me. This area may or
may not be blessed (cursed) with more microclimates and special
circumstances than others, but when members of our local iris society (all
gardening in the same mountain valley and within a radius of about 15
miles) get together to discuss varietal performance, more often than not we
cannot reach a consensus. 



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