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Re: FW: TB: Cult: Birds (long)

Hello Francelle

Maybe you should plant something they like better like strawberries or
red-currant,  far away from the irises.

Hope you get rid of them before your life becomes a nightmare...but as long as
they don't take a liking for you...
(Have you seen Hitchcock's movie?
Wouldn't imagine walking in the garden wearing a helmet....)

Didn't get the picture of the pink seedling in your former mail.

Can you tell me where i can order Cloud Reflection from?
And don't forget to give us news of 45-71a=Lady Friend X Bubbbling Along,
12-18G&J=Elegant Girl X Happenstance,
76-36=Barbara my love X Cast of Character!
Can't wait to see some of them registered, and even better...introduced!


  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Francelle
  To: iris@hort.net
  Sent: Sunday, March 09, 2008 3:49 AM
  Subject: [iris] FW: TB: Cult: Birds (long)

  For most of my life, and that's a long, long time, I have grown irises
  casually in Arizona and never had any trouble with birds.  Then I got
  serious about surrounding myself with the best of these beautiful flowers
  and helping create more.  Soon after that, birds discovered my irises.  Now
  every spring I have to battle these little winged rats.  Usually they prove
  smarter than I am.  I have tried everything.  Once I had the iris beds
  covered with fiery red streamers.  It took about two weeks for the birds to
  find out that they had nothing to do with fire.  A couple of other springs,
  I had two dozen metallic children's whirligigs spinning above the stalks.
  It was a major operation to put them up, but they helped a little bit.
  someone said to put insecticide on the buds.  That damaged the blossoms
  almost as much as the birds did.  For three years I used Ropel liquid bird
  repellant.  That worked until last year, when I think it must have lost its
  strength, and I can't find any more.  The only stalks I saw bloom last
  were those I cut at first sign of color and brought in the house.  This
  I decided that I would just sacrifice my first blooms to experiments as I
  try to teach birds that my irises just aren't very good.  I treated some
  with insecticide.  A nurseryman told me to try neem oil.  I did, and the
  buds I treated were gone the next morning.  Then I got creative and decided
  to try liquid smoke from the grocery store.  Maybe birds wouldn't like the
  smell of smoke.  I still don't know if that will work or not, but the buds
  treated last night were still there this morning.  I think I will treat
  again, as the odor doesn't last very long.

  For early blooming seedlings that I am really determined to see, my husband
  has built cages which I have covered with bird net.  However I can't cover
  very much of the garden that way.

  The two types of birds that I have caught in the act, sitting on top of a
  flower, tossing petals right and left to reach the anthers and the style
  arms, are Mocking Birds and Aberts Towhees.  The thing which bothers me the
  most is that I know many people who grow irises here, and none of them have
  this problem.  Why do those birds peck on me?

  Francelle Edwards  Glendale, AZ  Zone 9

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