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Re: HYB: CULT: help -flower size/stalk height

  • Subject: Re: HYB: CULT: help -flower size/stalk height
  • From: "pinkirises" <pbrooks@whidbey.net>
  • Date: Mon, 20 May 2002 05:55:29 -0000


I've been assuming that it's the result of our very cold (and 
continuing) Spring that I'm getting way shorter stalks and smaller 
blooms on pretty much every cv I have -- some 300+.  Most stalks @ 
2/3 last year's height, blooms half-size.

There is some variation:  my second-year irises in an east-side bed 
are more similar to last year's size, while those planted new last 
year (same bed) are not even blooming yet.  The one (most valuable to 
me) Pink Lenox, looks like an intermediate in size and height.  I 
have yet to see if crosses on it took.  No visible pollen.

There are some exceptions elsewhere, the most amusing being Mariposa 
Skies -- full-size TB flower on virtually no stalk at all.  Three 
blooms, blooming simulataneously, on no stalk.  I could only get into 
the top bloom to make a cross, but could barely find a stem to put 
the marker of the cross on.

As I've said, this is a mixed problem, since last year all the blooms 
were so big, on such tall stems, I had to stake every single one, and 
these don't pose that problem.  I have yet to see whether their 
fertility has been affected.

Patricia Brooks
Whidbey Island, WA, where it still isn't getting out of the fifties 
most days.

--- In iris-talk@y..., Linda Mann <lmann@v...> wrote:
> Apologies if we've talked this subject to death before, but one of 
> questions while hybridizing this year:
> How is flower size inherited?  Recessive, dominant, too complicated 
> figure out?
> Flower size seems to be strongly affected by weather/climate in some
> cultivars and not at all in others.
> Some examples:  DUSKY CHALLENGER has flowers and stalks pretty much 
> same size no matter what.
> WAR CHIEF, PLAY WITH FIRE have flowers in proportion to stalk 
height -
> if the stalks are short, the flowers are proportionately smaller.  
> seems to be related to preceeding late freezes.
> TIDE'S IN has flowers the same size no matter what, but late 
freezes can
> stunt the stalks almost to nothing, so big flowers are almost on 
top of
> the rhizome.
> Quite a few cultivars (can't think of a well known example cultivar 
> the moment) will start out with normal sized blooms but if it turns 
> and dry, later flowers will be smaller and smaller.
> Hmmm.. now that I've written this, it seems like the light blues 
have a
> tendency to have normal sized flowers, but stalks are susceptible to
> stunting with late freezes, & the reds seem to 'miniaturize'.  Other
> color classes seem more variable?
> Then there is regular flower size - some flowers are bigger than
> others...maybe inheritance of optimal (?) bloom size is known?
> Now that I have a lifetime supply of pollen & seed pods <g>, maybe 
I can
> start taking more detailed notes on which cultivars do what, do some
> pedigree chasing, & answer my own question in another 4 years....
> Any speculations, answers, observations appreciated.
> Linda Mann east Tennessee USA zone 7/8

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