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Reblooming Check List

  • Subject: Reblooming Check List
  • From: Mike Lowe <mlowe@worldiris.com>
  • Date: Sun, 14 Feb 1999 11:00:48 -0500

From: Mike Lowe <mlowe@worldiris.com>

The 1999 catalogs are appearing -- can Spring be far behind? The
Winterberry Gardens catalog of Don and Jenny Spoon offers a cornucopia of
iris, nearly all unified by the tendency to rebloom. One Winterberry
listing in particular caught my eye. The catalog offers GAY PAREE (Gorden
Plough 1954) as a 'TB RE HIS' and gives its description  as 'Re z-7 38" EM
blue white to white, red tangerine beards.' No 'X' appears with GAY PAREE
(X is used to indicate a cultivar that has rebloomed at Winterberry
Gardens).

GAY PAREE has appeared, by virtue of one report of rebloom, in every Check
List published by the Reblooming Iris Society since the first, in 1976. The
notation in that first Check List, compiled and edited by Lloyd Zurbrigg,
reads: (Re. in Indiana). The Indiana garden in which rebloom was noted is
not given. No further reports of rebloom on GAY PAREE have ever been
reported.

GAY PAREE has been a feature in our garden since 1965. It is noteworthy for
its outstanding garden qualities, and for the bloom's greenish cast
(described as a 'chartreuse influence' in its registration listing). In the
33 years that GAY PAREE has grown in our garden it has never initiated an
out of season bloom stalk. During those years we have had many long and
warm falls which have coaxed late season, infrequent, rebloomers into
performing.

Should the Reblooming iris Society continue to list 'once reported' iris as
rebloomers in the RIS Check List? Would it be practical, with the upsurge
in interest in remontancy, to 'raise the bar' for designating an iris as a
rebloomer? Would we, and the buying public, be better served by segregating
those cultivars with very few reports of rebloom into a separate section
labeled 'Possible rebloomer or carrier of rebloom'? Should a 'disclaimer'
accompany such listings?

The Reblooming Iris Societys present system can give a totally false
impression of what is, and what is not, a rebloomer. Touting an iris such
as GAY PAREE as a rebloomer, based on one reported instance of rebloom, is
deceptive advertising. The listing system should be changed to more
accurately reflect performance. RIS cannot expect catalogers to detail
number of reports and areas of reported rebloom. We must craft a better,
more user friendly system.

Cheers,

Mike,  mlowe@worldiris.com   --   http://www.worldiris.com
South Central Virginia, USA; USDA Zone 7A

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