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Report Card

I've been tied up for the last month, getting ready for and attending a 
semi-annual program review.  I have had a chance to read an occasional 
digest, but not as many as I would have liked.
  First off, I want to update Clarence and others on the resounding success 
of the Iris I obtained last spring at the Iris Pond.  I had sought advice 
for an artificial  water bog, and Clarence was generous enough to share not 
only advice but iris, too.  He suggested potting them and submerging the 
pots into the gravel in the bog.  I followed his advice, but when I ran out 
of pots and still had a bucket full of iris, I started sticking them 
directly into the gravel.  Well, I hate to say it but the foliage on the I. 
versicolor and I. pseudacorous that went directly into the gravel is a 
quarter to a third larger than the potted plants.  The base of the foliage, 
where it exits the ground, is as thick as my wrist.  I also wound up with 
bunches of seed pods, a couple of them the size of small bananas.  Out of 
curiosity, I opened the pods and found seeds the size of aspirin tablets in 
the larger pods.  I don't know if all this is normal or usual, but it is 
much more than what I expected.  The Iris grew so well that the bog is full. 
 It looks like I will need to divide them next spring or run the risk of 
overcrowding by the end of next summer.  As a bonus, the bog did just what I 
had hoped - my pond was crystal clear all season, not one algae bloom.

I don't know if it is appropriate, but I saw a couple of posts on "What We 
Do" and thought I would add my $0.02 worth.  I "retired" from the Navy in 
January 1986 after 22 years as a Radioman.  Worked everything from 
ship-to-shore CW to satellite communications.  Was stationed in California 
(boot camp & school), the Philippines, Viet-Nam, Spain, California (school, 
a ship, another school), Guam, Italy, Florida (ship), and Spain (again). 
 Have spent the last ten years as a telecommunications consultant to US 
military, federal law enforcement agencies, and allied countries (under 
foreign military sales programs).  Primarily in RF systems design, but also 
dabble in data networking and multimedia, including video teleconferencing. 
  You will be able to see the results of some of my non-military work in a 
year or so at the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of the American 
Indian in Manhattan.  Completely unrelated to all of this, I am fluent in 
Spanish (rusty in Italian) and taught college-level conversational Spanish 
classes.  I even had the opportunity to serve a year as the interpreter for 
the chief US negotiator at treaty negotiations with Spain.  I wound up 
translating the various proposals to and from English/Spanish, including the 
final treaty between the United States of America and the Kingdom of Spain. 
 When I grow up, I would like to be a professional gardener/woodworker.  In 
the meantime, I do what I can to keep the mortgage paid and food on the 
Charlie Rodgers
10 miles from the White House (Whitewater North)

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