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Re: Iris Grower

From: Denise Stewart <stewartd@proaxis.com>

Janet, at least you can find some kids to help you, as around here unless
the kids are working on parents farm, have found most to be of the GIMME
generation.  I work hard, at my nursery and when I hire our Min. wage in OR
is 6.00 and I pay that and work right beside them and I'm 54 and the last 2
hired I outworked with...so it is wonderful that you can still help by
hiring kids, as part of the countries problems with children today is not
allowing them to work younger and learn the value of the dollar...I wish I
could come and visit your place...
Denise in Lebanon, OR

At 09:13 AM 9/5/98 -0700, you wrote:
>From: "James T. Leifer" <iristg@stjohntelco.com>
>Yes, it is the very same garden.  We started working with Austin Morgan
>approximately 10 years ago.  We were looking for another enterprise to
>supplement our wheat farming.  We purchased several hundred varieties from
>Austin and planted them in the fertile soil of the Palouse country to see
>if they would even grow in our climate and soil.  They FLOURISED!!!! 
>Several years later Austin had a stroke and his wife asked if we would
>consider buying everything.  When she said "everything" -- it also meant
>the quack grass, morning glory and Canadian thistles that had infested
>their beds of iris.  It was an awful backbreaking job!!!  We transferred
>the garden 100 miles and now years later have a beautiful garden.  We
>dryland farm and very seldom have to water -- maybe once a year after
>they're established.  We also purchased another garden three years ago.  
>Austin is doing as well as he can.  He wanted his "dream" of life to
>continue and we're trying to do that for him.  Sometimes we wish we were a
>little "younger" as this is a hard job.  We have smaller kids, but we're
>like grandparent age -- our kids, thank goodness, are great workers.  In
>our small community we're also considered a "community service" as we
>sometimes hire 12 - 14 year old kids to help us (and yes, paying above
>minimum wage!) and work beside us.  Seldom are children able to find jobs
>to learn the "value of working!"  
>This entire operation has been a good experience however and we've learned
>alot and grown closer together as a family -- you'd have to!  When we talk
>to Austin next time I'll have to tell him that he's remembered by many. 
>He'll like that!  Janet
>> From: Sterling Okase <sterling_o@hotmail.com>
>> To: iris-talk@onelist.com
>> Subject: [iris-talk] Re: Iris Grower
>> Date: Saturday, September 05, 1998 8:21 AM
>> From: "Sterling Okase" <sterling_o@hotmail.com>
>> >From: "James T. Leifer" <iristg@stjohntelco.com>
>> >
>> >OT-BIO  Iris Test Garden - Jim and Janet Leifer Family
>> >We own and operate Iris Test Garden in the Palouse Country of 
>> Southeastern
>> >Washington State.  We began our operation approximately 9 years ago and
>> >purchased an established garden.  
>> Welcome to the list Janet. You should be able to find lots and lots of 
>> helpful information here.
>> The name of your garden has made me curious. There has been a garden 
>> named Iris Test Gardens for a number of years in your area. It was 
>> originally run by the Maxwell family in the 50s and 60s in Yakima , 
>> Washington. I believe they sold it to someone else and until just 
>> recently, it was run by Austin Morgan in College Place, Washington. 
>> Would this be the same garden? If so, what ever happened to Austin?
>> Iris Maniac,
>> Sterling (not Innerst)
>> Seattle, WA. Zone 8
>> sterling_o@hotmail.com
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