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Re: Unregistered Iris

Sharon and others,

I just had to jump in and point out that before the American Iris Society
established a registration system it was impossible to know what one was
buying.  Many different irises were sold under the same name, and many times
different names became attached to the same iris.  

The British Iris Society was founded shortly after the American Iris Society,
and the French Iris Society shortly thereafter.  Both agreed to support and
use the registration system established by the AIS.  Then, the International
Horticultural Council designated the AIS as the International Registration
Authority for Irises (other than bulbous) in 1955 as part of official
cultivar registration system for plants in commerce.  All reputable nurseries
are bound by the ethics of the trade to sell only cultivars that have been
registered and to ensure that they are true clones of the registered
cultivar.  Obviously some nurseries to not adhere to the rules they are
obligated to follow...and the buyer is the loser!

The best example of what happens when nurseries do not follow the rules is
with the junk Japanese irises (not registered) which are imported from Europe
in quantity by some nurseries.  These junk irises are mostly grown from seed,
and although a name is attached to them, you will get many different irises
under the same name...and almost assuredly all will be "junk" plants.  One
example is the Japanese iris that is the so called "Darling"  (a name which
belongs "legally" to a Spanish iris) sold by several nurseries.  I have seen
at least 8 different irises sold as DARLING...and of course the name is not
proper in the first place.  ONLY BUY RHIZOMOUS IRISES THAT HAVE BEEN
REGISTERED WITH AIS, unless it is a species form...otherwise you will most
likely get very inferior plants.  Clarence Mahan in Virginia 

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