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OT-BIO : Kent Appleberry in Utah

I always start my entries to discussion lists by saying that I don't expect to post very much. I think I can keep to that in this case, as I'm conveniently ignorant about the topic of iris and iris culture. I got my first 50 named irises last fall from an end of season row run sale, which didn't require any choosing on my part. Now I'm in the process of putting together orders for another hundred or two, this time of my choice. I've been reading quite a bit online, including archives from this list and the photo list. All very helpful.

I live in rural central Utah, Sanpete County, at about 6,000 feet, maybe zone 5a, or possible 4b at my house, which is out of town. I'm not aware of any irisarians in this area. I know of a few in-state, but haven't met any. Kasparek, Nebeker, Muhlstein (sp?) and another hybridizer or two are names I've come across. And of course I've seen Jeff Walters' name many times in the archives here.

I hope the thought of this won't cause too much discomfort among the true gardeners here, but I'm getting into bearded irises partly because they're relatively carefree plants well suited to arid summers. I may find that some cultivars won't put up with what I hope will be a good degree of neglect once they're established. My plan is to keep the weeds away, and to divide as needed, but not to pamper much in other ways. No fertilizer, I hope, except what will occur naturally from the detritus of the weeds and twigs I use for mulch. (I understand there might be concerns about borers from mulch of the wrong kind, or rot from too much mulch--but it is very arid here.) I expect to have smaller flowers than many, but I hope to still have some. Maybe I'm being unrealistic. If so, now's a good time to warn me.

I suppose that's more than enough intro. I've finally signed up because I have a question, which I'll post separately.


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