Saturday, May 23, 2009


Images: 1.  Pencil drawing of iris parts.  2.  Granddaughter loving flowers.  3.  Germanica Iris batik. 4.  Yellow self: Unknown yellow re bloomer.  5. White standards and purple falls: Wabash) 6.  Maroon self: #10 Maroon. 7.  White standards & blue falls: Stairway to Heaven.   

 When I look at the Iris  When 

blooming, I am reminded that nothing comes as close to perfection as a beautiful child and a beautiful flower. And both are the most beautiful when they are yours.

Although both contain the DNA of the parents (and ancestors) which determines much of the characteristics, it is Grace that makes them beautiful.

Flowers: Somewhere there was a hybridizer who chose which traits to value and which to discard. When it has reached the level of perfection the hybridizer wants, he/she registers the plant and offers for sale. A retailer thinks it will sell and purchases the stock. A gardener (me) decides it would be perfect for the garden. And I take the picture.

Some things to notice on these pictures (you may want to make them larger for this):

1. Some appear pearlized while others are velvet.
2. Some falls have ruffles and edges of different colors.
3. Some have standards that stand tall, others are more Amoena style or flat.
4. Some have veins that are lighter or darker than the petal.
5. The ruff color is another distinctive mark.
6. Having standards, falls, and ruffs in distinctly different colors is currently desirable.
7. The different colored spider marks on the falls is new.
8. The names of many old varieties are lost.
9. Many re bloom in the fall, some have fragrance, and all pick well for the vase.

An opinion: Old varieties may not have all the new fancy attributes but they are worth having in your garden. They are the sweet purples, lavenders, yellows, and browns that we all saw in our grandmother's gardens. Many are sweet smelling.

I will never claim to have the credentials or desire to be involved in all parts of plant hybridizing and research. I will always claim enjoyment of the beautiful - whether a hybrid or naturalized.

“Flowers are the sweetest things God ever made and forgot to put a soul into.” ~Henry Ward Beecher, Life Thoughts

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