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TW: Biography

6/27/96     10:00 P.M.

Hello Everyone!

Kathy Guest reminded me that I need to post my biography. As a member of the
Daylily E-Mail Robin, I should have remembered to do this. So here goes.

I have been growing irises since 1978 when my close friends, Russ and Joan
Moors, infected me with the incurable iris virus. One evening in July, they
appeared in our yard with rhizomes from 30 different varieties. When they
bloomed the following spring, I was hopelessly hooked on irises. Today, my
father, mother and I grow many different species of irises. Included in our
garden landscape are about 365 tall bearded, 150 medians, 125 Siberians, and
about 150 Japanese. The tall bearded are definitely my favorites, but there's
a warm spot in my heart for all the other types, too. We also grow about 650
varieties of daylilies, 30 peonies, and roughly 225 hostas and various other

Although I love irises, I also am greatly enamored with daylilies. I've been
hybridizing since 1989, and have about 4,000 daylily seedlings under
observation. My father is the iris hybridizer in the family. At age 80, he is
hybridizing Siberian and Japanese irises. Our own Dr. Currier McEwen, age 94,
has been his mentor and has provided all the encouragement and expertise that
Dad needed.

I grew up on a Jersey dairy farm and lived the farm life until I began
college in 1960. Upon graduation I embarked on a teaching career that began
in 1965 and ended last week when I retired from teaching after 31 years of
teaching seventh grade science. I am particularly interested in photography,
writing, and computers. While I am not totally computer literate, my skills
have improved a bit from the day I had to look for the "on switch" on the
computer. I love to take garden videos, and each season take about 20 hours
of video. When I attended the AIS National Convention in Portland, Oregon in
'94, I took along my camcorder, and captured almost 8 hours of convention
irises and tours. It had long been a dream of mine to someday tour the
Schreiner's Gardens, and I think I may have captured about every iris in
their magnificent display garden. Those in my group nearly had to haul me
kicking and screaming from this garden. They couldn't leave without me, for I
had the keys to the van! Nothing else mattered --- food, bathroom breaks, and
returning to the hotel were all irrevelant! 

I am presently a member of several plant societies. These include the
American Iris, Hemercallis, and Hosta Societies. I serve as a garden judge
for both AIS and AHemS. I'm a member of the Maine Iris Society, the Maine
Hosta Society, the New England Daylily Society, the New England Hosta
Society, and the E-Mail Daylily and Hosta Robins. I am presently the leader
of the daylily Aggie-Rondo snail mail robin. The vanity license plate on my
car reads, "AIS-AHS", three plant societies on one plate! Everyone knows that
I'm crazy about plants. I'm forever gratefully addicted!

I think that's quite enough about me. I look forward to participating in the
Iris List (Robin).

Ted White        Minot, Maine          USDA Zone 5        AIS Region 1

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