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Re: TB: (Photo) Timewarp

  • Subject: [iris-photos] Re: TB: (Photo) Timewarp
  • From: "Neil A Mogensen" neilm@charter.net
  • Date: Fri, 21 Jan 2005 10:47:14 -0500

Betty, I do recall a time when howls were raised at calling PINNACLE an "amoena" in yellow.  The exact same remark as you cite could well have been said about "amoena."
"An amoena by definition carries anthocyanin."  I.e., WABASH.
Then to make matters even worse, PROGENITOR and its descendants came from the work of Paul Cook.  I recall when the major BAIS article appeared with the origin of WHOLE CLOTH laid out in family tree form, Mary Tharp, one of my mentors, not only hit the roof--she just plain said "Not so!  Amoenas are recessive."  She was furious and never budged a bit before she died.  I don't think she was the only one.
The issue is a semantic one.  Do "plicata" and "amoena" refer to pigments or do they describe patterns?  Originially they were limited by both.  An amoena was a WABASH type, and a plicata was in anthocyanin colors only.
Now we are faced with carotene distributions that have some characteristics shared with anthocyanin-only plicatas.  What do we call them?  Do we invent a new word?  Or do we follow the redefinition of "amoena" and shift the meaning from pigment to pattern?
You might enjoy taking a look at the registration data for HEY JOE, a registration in 1967 by someone who's name you will recognize.  It is classed as a W2Y, yellow on white plicata.  The registration was done quite deliberately to test the waters over this same issue--are we talking about pigments, or are we talking about pattern?  Hey Joe had its yellow laid on in discrete dots gradually merging to solid yellow in the petal edges.  Garden visitors loved it, and I do wish it were still extant.  Never introduced, it had limited distribution and has disappeared into the mists of time.
I wasn't very happy at first at Jean Stevens calling PINNACLE an amoena, nor were a lot of others, but the majority didn't seem to mind, and the redefinition took hold.  Now an amoena is anything with white (more or less) standards and falls of ANY contrasting color.
Doing the same with "plicata" will disorient or disturb the more verbally conservative of us, but I suspect the majority of folks in the iris world will not blink an eye at the change.
Neil Mogensen  z 7 western NC mountains

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