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Re: Medals

  • Subject: Re: Medals
  • From: DWiris@aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 16 Feb 1999 00:20:46 EST

From: DWiris@aol.com

Dear Jan,

Re: The John C. Wister Memorial Medal
This medal is part of the American Iris Society's Official Garden Awards.
Accredited judges of AIS cast votes for the garden awards of the society from
which garden awards are decided.  There is a progression of awards based on
eligibility conditions.  The first garden award is the High Commendation (HC)
Award for irises seen under seedling number or registered but not introduced
varieties.  Any seedling receiving 5 or more votes receives this award.  The
first award for introduced irises is the Honorable Mention (HM) Award.
Bearded irises become eligible the second year after introduction and all
other types of irises the third year.  All  are listed on the judges ballot
for three years.

Eligibility for  the Award of Merit (AM) Award begins the second year after a
variety receives an HM and is eligible for three years.  To become eligible
for a Special Medal, an iris must have received an AM in its class.
Eligibility begins the second year after the AM and continues for three years.
A Special Medal is awarded to the one iris receiving the most votes in each
class, except for the Wister Medal which is awarded to the top three

The year following receipt of a Special Medal, an iris becomes eligible for
the top award, The Dykes Memorial Medal.  These varieties remain on the ballot
for three years.  Each judge can vote for one iris each year for this award.

AIS judges are trained to evaluate the characteristics of many types of
irises, not just on the beauty of an individual bloom, but on the number and
placement of blooms on a stem and the vigor and disease resistance of the
whole plant.  There are judges in every state in the US and in Canada who vote
based on performance in their home area.  But they are, also,  encouraged to
attend tours at national and regional meetings and to visit hybridizers
gardens.  Many varieties receive awards based on their performance as guest
plants at national conventions.

Hope this summary helps to understand how irises get the various awards.

Dorothy Willott

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