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Re: HIST: Correction--Royal Gardens

From: Mike Lowe <mlowe@worldiris.com>

>Dorothy writes...

>One slight correction here, Mike.  Royal Iris Gardens was operated by Jesse
>C. Nicholls, Jr., the Col.'s son.  The Col. himself operated from Ithaca,
>NY, while Royal was near Syracuse, NY.   The fact that the two men shared a
>name and both were involved in iris activities has lead to some confusion.

It could be that the entry in the 39 'Check List' has forever muddied the
issue as Mrs. Peckham wrote under the father's bio: "Iris list began 1926,
Catalogue 1928 and continues to date (1939)". Perhaps Papa was the 'deep
pockets' and Jr. was the 'man on the ground' doing the actual work. Jr.'s
name did go on the catalog.

>Col. Nicholls is the guy who achieved some fame with varieties VALOR, RED
>VALOR, MARY E. NICHOLLS, MATA HARI, etc.  As far as I can tell, Jesse Jr.,
>helped with his father's early efforts, but did not introduce bearded irises
>himself.   He did, however, market many "vinicolors" and wrote a most
>interesting account of collecting these from  "dismal swamps" in one of his
>Royal Gardens catalogs.

Jr. DID introduce LAs of distinction -- AUTUMN FIRE and AUGUST FLAME are
both rebloomers. I have often wondered if the 'teracotta I. fulva' used as
the pollen  parent of RED ECHO was actually either AUTUMN FIRE or AUGUST
FLAME. Then there is the much earlier LA rebloomer that has as a parentage:
"three generations of DOROTHEA K. WILLIAMSON x fulva." Interesting to
speculate but ultimately, unproveable. I wonder if AUTUMN FIRE or AUGUST
FLAME are still grown?

The Nicholl's catalog does have one further 'claim to fame' in furnishing
information that might help resolve a long standing 'Iris Identity Mixup'
involving VIRGINIA MOORE (Shull 1920) and CORONATION (Moore 1927). It is my
contention that VIRGINIA MOORE has totally supplanted CORONATION on the
East Coast and when you see an iris puported to be 'Coronation' (at least
in the East) it is actually 'Virginia Moore.'


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

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