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Re: Iris Experiment!

Tom Tadfor Little wrote:
> Chris writes
> :In the near future I will start to receive some new Tall Bearded iris
> :rhizomes. As a result of recent over winter survival problems with the
> :TB's I am planning an experiment of sorts. Last year I lost all
> :of my new TB acquisition plants. Instead of planting them directly in
> :the garden as I have done in previous years, I will be planting them in
> :pots as suggested earlier in the year by some of our loyal fellow Iris
> :Listers!
> I realize I'm not answering your questions, but I would like to make
> a suggestion: Plant some of them outside too, as a control group. Of
> course, you'd be running the risk of losing those, but then you'd
> really know how effective the planting in pots is in reducing your
> losses.
Chris responds:
I realize that this is not a true experiment without a control group but 
my rationale is that with the high percentage (70% approx) of losses 
from outside overwintering that I have had over the last couple of years 
and notably last year with 100% loss I'm going to take my chances on 
putting all the new acquisitions in pots. 
To have the control group be an effective gauge due to the 
inherited genetic differences of the varieties I would really need to 
have two rhizomes of each of the new acquisitions. One to pot and the 
other to plant outside. Sorry, the budget doesn't allow for this! 
I don't think I can do any worse than last year! There will likey be 
some divisions planted outside from clumps that need thinning and 
possibly I will take a rhizome from these and pot it as well. 
Anyway, I'm going against the grain here and essentially what I'm going 
to be doing is spring planting my TB iris! I think that this may be 
better suited to my own particular climatic zone than a mid August 
planting that has not got an established root structure before the end 
of our shorter growing season.(zone 6)
Time will tell...
Christopher Hollinshead
Mississauga, Ontario  Canada  zone6b
Director, Canadian Iris Society
Newsletter Editor, Canadian Iris Society
e-mail: cris@netcom.ca

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