Re: Evaluation Criteria
John asked a series of questions: here's one response -- others will have
more to add.
As I understand it, you get one bloom stalk (sometimes with lots of
branches) per increase.
------> generally, you get one bloomstalk per increase, since that is
the purpose for the increase. Branching, as generally used in regards to
iris, is on the bloomstalk itself, not determined by increases, but a
desireable, but separate trait.
Not every increase will bloom the next season. (is there a general
----------> Correct. No doubt mother nature is trying to make the cultivar
survive by sending out more increases that do not bloom than those that
actually do bloom so that she can be sure there are more increases for
the next season (she's pretty smart, but sometimes she decides that
a cv should not survive, and allows no increases but only a bloomstalk and
the rhizome will "bloom out". She's tough, mother nature is)
A general percentage of increases that bloom would be a wonderful selling
point, don't you think? If this percentage could be predicted, we'd be
far advanced and hybridizers would have more money in their pockets, and
I think there's no general predictable percentage, but the Judges' Handbook
says that a really good clump will have between 1/4 and 1/2 of the
fans in bloom and this is what judges will look for. Number of fans in bloom
depends a great deal on cultural
practises, too much nitrogen promotes foliage growth, and therefore, fewer
Is clumping slowley or fast(ly) (grin) the same or different from the
rate a mother generates increases?
--------> seems like the same thing to me. A clump of iris is the whole
group of rhizomes together. A clump should be separated every three years
to give the rhizomes a place to grow, and at the same time, a three year
old clump is in its prime and is the one to evaluate for number of bloomstalks
compared to number of fans for the 1/4 to 1/2 percentage called for.
If the rhizomes do not clump up fast, maybe a grower can separate the clump
less often than three years -- an individual choice based on what's good
for the rhizomes. Crowded clumps don't bloom as readily as well spaced
Sometimes, medians must be separated more often than TB's, since many clump
up very fastly.
Carolyn Schaffner in Buffalo, NY