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OT:Mild winter recollection

  • To: Multiple recipients of list <iris-l@rt66.com>
  • Subject: OT:Mild winter recollection
  • From: "J. Griffin Crump" <jgcrump@erols.com>
  • Date: Sat, 7 Feb 1998 16:15:49 -0700 (MST)

The big Atlantic seaboard rainstorm has finally passed, but another dose
of rain is in the forecast. Overall, of course, it has been one of the
mildest winters here. No snow at all, yet. As I searched my notes for
some seedling heredity, I ran across these notes from 1992, that may
portend something for the coming year:

" 'Spring' 1992 -- endlessly cold and wet. Still wearing sweaters on
June 20. Almost everything in the iris garden bloomed. Several seedlings
which had never bloomed -- for as long as 12 years -- now bloomed.
However, in the back yard, leaf spot was rampant. In front, borers got
into half of the rebloomers planted last fall, even though I kept them
scrupulously clean, even working on them in the coldest days of winter.
This past winter, by the way, was one of the mildest since we came to
Virginia in 1975. So, half the rebloomers did not bloom at all in
spring.

"July 9 -- REFINED bloomed today -- a fully-developed stalk and flower,
and a second bloom is on the way.

"July 12 -- CHAMPAGNE ELEGANCE came into bloom with a full stalk of 10
or 12 buds and a lesser stalk of 2 or 3 . . . Before it finished, Queen
Dorothy bloomed near the end of July. While it was still blooming,
VIOLET MUSIC came into bloom, with a full stalk of 14 buds, on August 4
. . . A full stalk of JENNIFER REBECCA came to the point of bloom on
August 6, then withered suddenly. VM's candelabra branching is
beautiful. Thanks to Mount Pinatubo for all of this, I guess.

"August 9 -- another bloom stalk has appeared on QUEEN DOROTHY.

"August 22 -- QUEEN DOROTHY's two bloom stalks still promise, but no
show yet. GRACE THOMAS's bright yellow should open fully tomorrow. It's
all ruffles at the tip today.

"August 26 -- QUEEN DOROTHY bloomed for the third time this year. GRACE
THOMAS's first flower is spent -- the rest clustered like gladioli and
probably won't bloom till much after the first. QD has more than (rain
spot) buds, of which 4 or 5 are blooming by August 29.

"Sept 3 -- BABY SNOWFLAKE bloomed today. Another surprise.

"Sept 20 -- GRACE THOMAS' 2d bloomstalk (since August 26) is blazing
away. And blooms which had stayed in their spathes since that date are
now blooming. Gorgeous fragrance in this iris. Also blooming today is
REFINED. And BABY SNOWFLAKE's 2d stalk is about to bloom. SPIRIT OF
MEMPHIS has a bloomstalk, as does AUTUMN ELEGANCE. HAREVEST OF MEMORIES
has a well-branched stalk with golden buds all over. BROTHER CARL shows
a bloomstalk, and CHAMPAGNE ELEGANCE appears to do so. A stalk is up on
JENNIFER REBECCA. I BLESS has one up & FEEDBACK looks fat."

In all, QUEEN DOROTHY bloomed 5 times in 1992. What may we be in for in
1998?

Griff Crump, along the tidal Potomac near Mount Vernon, VA, where the
day began cloudy, a few shafts of sun poked through, then sleet in early
afternoon -- yuk!  jgcrump@erols.com





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