... growing and hybridizing all kinds of plants in zone 6b Maryland since the 1980's.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Good year for iris repeat bloom maybe...

With all the rains and fluctuating temperatures, it looks like it's going to be a good year for "outside-of-normal-season" blooms on the irises. CRICKET SONG normally blooms again in September or October, but when conditions are right it'll send up stalks sporadically thoughout the summer. The first picture shows one of these stalks and lots of big healthy new fans that are a good sign that there will be plenty of Fall bloomstalks to come. I cut off all the old spent flowerstalks except for the ones with hand-pollinated seed pods maturing. There are three of these from pollen of Brad Kasparek's rebloomer Z Z ZANZIBAR. My goal with this cross is to build up lots of rebloom genes in one line.
Another one that usually blooms again in the Fall, is this one from a stray dropped seed. I call it "Pink Volunteer" and it looks like it's from one of the crosses I'd done on CRICKET SONG or EASY SMILE (two reblooming siblings). I sometimes don't catch the seed pods before they start to crack open and scatter seeds. This is the first time it's ever sent up a summer stalk. It's the small stalk in the center at the bottom. There's also a maturing seed pod on one of the normal season stalks in the picture. It's taller and partially hidden behind that tall leaf in the middle.
 A new one to ever rebloom for me... this is a seedling of CLOWN PANTS from pollen of an Iris pallida clone labeled "Latil". This pallida clone is reported to rebloom somewhere (France?) and CLOWN PANTS is the pollen parent of my two registered diploid MTB rebloomers, CRICKET SONG and EASY SMILE. So, it's not a big surprise that this one's decided it might want to be a rebloomer too.
In addition to two stalks soon to open on an unregistered sibling of CRICKET SONG and EASY SMILE that an iris friend has dubbed "Smiley's Sister" (sorry didn't get a picture yet), there's a really out of character late stalk on PALTEC. This is a really cool wide-cross iris - between a bearded iris and the Japanese crested roof iris Iris tectorum. It's never done this for me before, and as far as I know isn't reported to be a rebloomer. So I guess this one's just a welcome fluke. 


  1. I'd be really interested in what the F2s from PALTEC would look like.

    The striped/spotted look of the I. tectorum parent in a more typical bearded background would be really cool.

  2. Hi Darren,
    I'd love to see an F2 from any of the bearded x tectorums too! This one, PALTEC, has been around since 1929 (I think?) and has never given any offspring that I've heard of. I have two hybrids of my own that haven't been around for so long but still neither has produced any seeds. But at least the one, FLYING DRAGON, makes a little pollen.
    My hope is that some day we can generate a fertile group of these, maybe by doubling the chromosome number of these sterile hybrids.
    And I agree those spots would be really cool to bring into the beardless!

  3. Darn autocorrect!
    I typed "beardeds"!!! ;0)