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Karin writes

: Could somebody explain what a luminata is and the genetics of it? I asked
:Joe Ghio to expain it and as he took me around his seedling patch he would
:say this or that is an illuminata then look closer and change his mind. So I
:am more in the dark than before. I am under the impression that the
:illuminata pattern is a recessive (very recessive) trait of plicata's. I
:read a AIS bulletin about this breeding pattern but feel that I am still in
:the dark about what exactly it looks like. Could you give a few examples?

The pattern itself is described in the "INFO: Iris Lingo" file, which I
posted on the list last week, and which is also on the web.

Basically, a luminata (not "illuminata") has a marbling of darker color
between the veins, making it sort of like a photo negative of a plicata.
A tell-tale sign is that the hafts and style crests are clear and bright.

Genetically, this pattern is a variant form of the plicata gene. It is
neither recessive nor dominant to the plicata; if both plicata and
luminata genes are present, both pattern will appear in the flower (to
some extent, at least). Such a combination is sometimes called a "fancy
plicata". Ghio's uncertainty may have been because some of the irises
that looked like luminatas from a distance may have shown some plicata
markings too, close up.

The classic example of a luminata is MOONLIT SEA, but that is seldom
grown these days. Keppel has produced a number of modern ones. SPIRIT
WORLD is an example.


Tom Tadfor Little         tlittle@lanl.gov  -or-  telp@Rt66.com
technical writer/editor   Los Alamos National Laboratory
Telperion Productions     http://www.rt66.com/~telp/

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