Saturday, August 31, 2013

2013 Randolph Perry Medal winner 'Roy's Repeater'

by Jim Murrain

I am pleased to announce the winner of the 2013 Randolph Perry Medal 
is 'Roy's Repeater' by Terry  Aitken of Washington.

Photo by C. Hensler
Here's a full description of this beautiful Iris via the Iris Encyclopedia:   

'Roy's Repeater' (J. Terry Aitken, R. 2002). Sdlg. 97 SPEC 3C. SPEC-X, 42" (107 cm), ML-VL. White ground heavily overlaid with purple veins, F. with well defined sulphur yellow signal with purple veins; style arms white, veined purple near crests. 'Roy Davidson' X unknown - possibly 'Between the Lines'. Aitken 2002. HM 2006, AM 2010.
To learn more about this Medal go here.
Species Cross is a horticultural class for hybrids. Although this class was the last to be created, it represents Irises that are the earliest of their kind. Someday many of these crosses may go on to develop into classes that warrant their own category. All the hybrid classes such as tall-bearded or standard dwarf had their beginnings in those first crosses between two species. Some crosses between species have been so rewarding they have been repeated creating substantial subgroups like Sino-Siberians and Calsibes. This is a class of experimentation and innovation that helps us learn about species and the possibilities for the future. The highest award for this class is the Randolph-Perry Medal.

Friday, August 30, 2013

'Woolong' wins 2013 Founders of SIGNA Medal

By Jim Murrain

The 2013 Founders of SIGNA Medal is awarded to...
'Woolong' collected and named by James Waddick of Missouri.

Here's a full description of this beautiful Iris via the Iris Wiki:

'Woolong' (James Waddick, R. 2001). SPEC (tectorum), height 10" (25 cm), Mid bloom season. Blue violet, falls with darker spots and flecks, white signal and crest; style arms paler blue violet. Collected in wild, Woolong Valley, Sichuan, China, 1989. Iris City 2002. HM 2006, Award of Merit 2010. 

The photos are of the original collection site and taken by James Waddick.

This is Jim's third win of this prestigious medal.
For information about this award go here.
Following is a brief description of Waddick's finding of Iris tectorum 'Woolong'.

In the summer of 1988, Jim Waddick, Bob Pries and Jim Murrain all thought that some one should go to China and collect some new wild species plants to expand the gene pool. 

It fell on Jim Waddick to go in May 1989, and then the Tiananmein freedom demonstrations started. Straying to the far reaches of the country, Jim and his guides traveled to the famed Woolong Valley of Sichuan Province, best known for its Giant Panda Reserve. 

While driving the only road through this narrow valley, Jim saw some vaguely familiar (but not quite) leaves hanging over the road, and they stopped. There was a huge patch of the crested Iris tectorum, but extending 20 or 30 feet across and looking especially big and husky.

 It all seemed to be a single giant plant connected by years of spreading rhizomes. A few fans were collected and survived in cultivation. It did prove to be an especially vigorous form of this familiar iris and was then named and introduced.

Please visit  the: Species Iris Group of North America website to learn more about growing and identifying the diverse species of Iris.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

'Egyptian Queen' takes the 2013 William Mohr Medal

by Jim Murrain

I am thrilled to announce the winner of the 2013 William Mohr Medal is 
Tom Johnson of Oregon for his 'Egyptian Queen'.

Photo by   Tom Johnson
Here is the description from the Iris Encyclopedia.

'Egyptian Queen' OGB- (Thomas Johnson, R. 2007). Sdlg. #TU289C. AB, 20” (51 cm), M. S. medium lilac, rosy copper midribs, fine network of veins overall; style arms tan copper, large; F. riose copper blending to tan copper; muted gold hafts; velvety black cherry signals; beards bright yellow, slight fragrance. 'Hot Jazz' X 'Onlooker'. Sib to 'Octave'. Mid-America Garden, 2007. Honorable Mention 2009; Award of Merit 2011

This is Tom's second win two years running. He won in 2012 for his Iris 'Suspect'. Many thanks to Tom Johnson for bringing us another easy to grow Arilbred Iris with the exotic look of the desert irises of the Middle East. As an OGB- this is over half bearded Iris heritage ensuring that it will prosper in many diverse climates.
For information about this award go here.

For more information about Aril and Arilbred irises please visit the Aril Society International website    and consider joining this vibrant group of Iris lovers.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

2013 Clarence G. White Medal Winner "Refiner's Fire"

By Renee Fraser

And the winner of the 2013 Clarence G. White Medal for an arilbred iris is... "Refiner's Fire"  

Since 1993, the Clarence G. White memorial medal has been awarded to the best arilbred iris with 1/2 or more aril ancestry that clearly exhibits at least two 
readily recognizable aril flower characteristics as defined and approved by the Aril Society International. (Before 1993, it was the C. G. White award, equivalent to an award of merit. Arilbreds must now earn an award of merit before they can qualify for the C. G. White medal.) The medal honors C. G. White, who in the 1950s created the family of fertile arilbreds that still dominates arilbred breeding today. 

More information on these hybrids of oncocyclus and regelia crosses to tall bearded irises at the Aril International Society Website.

Here is a description of this lovely iris from the American Iris Society Encyclopedia:
'Refiner's FireOGB (Peter McGrath, R. 2006). Sdlg McAB99-137. AB, 26" (66cm), Early midseason bloom. . S. lilac lavender, bronze orange veins and midrib; style arms bronze orange; falls same, large burgundy-red signal surrounded by slight blaze at upper half; beards white tipped yellow. Shockey 92-112, 'Desert Attire' Sib X'Babylonian Fires'. Aril Society 2007. Honorable Mention 2009, Award of Merit 2011.

"Refiner's Fire" McGrath (Photo credit Rick Tasco)

The hybridizer claims that "if we have a moist spring, the color saturation is so intense it leaps off of the flower."

This iris has been much honored, and climbed up the ranks in its earliest possible years of eligibility.  It is the only introduced offspring of the beautiful "Babylonian Fires."  It grows well in New Mexico, Texas, California, and similar climates.

Lowell Baumunk admiring "Refiner's Fire"  Photo credit:  Cindy Rivera

For more information on the AIS awards, you may visit the AIS Website, and for a full list of the winners this year with links to photos, go to the American Iris Society Encyclopedia.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

2013 Caparne-Welch Medal Winner "Trimmed Velvet"

By Renee Fraser

The winner of the 2013 Caparne-Welch Medal for best miniature dwarf bearded reblooming iris is "Trimmed Velvet" by Donald Spoon.

'Trimmed Velvet' (Donald Spoon, R. 2006). Sdlg. 2001-52B. MDB, 6" (15 cm), EM & RE. Deep plum purple self, style arms lighter on edges, purple black spot on velvety F.; beards lavender blue tipped golden yellow in middle, orange in throat; ruffled. 'Senorita Frog' X self. Winterberry 2006. Honorable Mention 2008; Award of Merit 2011Caparne-Welch Medal 2013.

"Trimmed Velvet" Photo courtesy AIS Wiki

This medal is restricted to miniature dwarf bearded (MDB) irises. It is named in honor of William John Caparne (1855-1940) and Walter Welch (1887-1980).

For more information about median irises in general and Intermediate Bearded Irises in particular, visit the Median Iris Society Website.  

Monday, August 26, 2013

Iris Classics: "Pretty Pansy"

By Mike Unser

From a cross of the lovely historic iris 'Bertha Gersdorff' by the classic 'Moonlit Sea' we were blessed with a new variety in the now-termed 'luminata' pattern: 'Pretty Pansy', a wonderful introduction from the Sass Bros. in 1946. They had often followed breeding lines where this rare and recessive pattern appeared so it was no surprise that this lovely flower would make a big splash in the iris world.

It was described in the Iris Test Gardens catalog for 1954 as:
" 'A purple and white of Moonlit Sea coloring without the yellow. 36 inch stems.' Our comment: 'Here is a knockout, different from anything we have seen, will attract attention anywhere. A fine thing.'"

A fine thing, indeed. The white heart combined with the fresh purple wash makes the entire bloom glow from within - grabbing the eye and pulling the viewer in. This pattern has often been followed and today has been expanded to many other color classes, but it all started back in the '40's when the Sass Brothers pursued their vision of what irises could be.

'Pretty Pansy' is an excellent grower and is easily found. Consider adding it to your garden. You won't be sorry.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

2013 Cook-Douglas Medal Winner "Wish Upon a Star"

By Renee Fraser

The AIS is proud to congratulate Paul Black on his Cook-Douglas Medal winning standard dwarf bearded iris, "Wish Upon a Star."

"Wish Upon a Star" Photo credit Stout Gardens at Dancingtree

This medal is restricted to standard dwarf bearded (SDB) irises. It is named in honor of Paul Cook (1891-1963) and Geddes Douglas (1902-1993).  

According to Clarence Mahan on the AIS Awards Page, " Paul Cook's work with dwarf irises was truly pioneering. His early breeding of dwarf irises led to a series of I. arenaria hybrids, the most notable being `Keepsake,' `Tampa,' and `Promise.' He was the first to use the true I. pumila in his breeding programs, and this resulted in the introduction of the first of the great stud irises in the standard dwarf class: 'Baria,' 'Fairy Flax,' and 'Green Spot.'"
"Douglas's historically most important hybridizing achievements were with dwarf irises. Working with stock from Paul Cook, Douglas's crosses of I pumila with tall bearded irises created the race of irises that came to be known as 'lilliputs.'"

The American Iris Society Encyclopedia describes the iris thus:

'Wish Upon A Star' (Paul Black, registered 2006). Seedling L326B. SDB, height 13" (33 cm), early, mid, late season bloom. Standards dark blue-purple blending to dark claret; style arms dark claret; falls dark purple-black, slightly lighter haft and edge; beards pale cream gold, white at end, large; pronounced sweet fragrance. I269A, 'Zap' sibling X 'Neutron'. Mid-America 2006. Honorable Mention 2008, Award of Merit 2010; Cook Douglas Medal 2013.
For more information on Miniature Tall Bearded Irises, please visit the Median Iris Society Webpage.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

2013 Williamson-White Medal Winner "Peebee and Jay"

By Renee Fraser

Please join us in congratulating Barbara & David Schmieder on their Williamson-White Medal winning iris "Peebee and Jay."

"Peebee and Jay"  Barbara and David Schmeider

This medal is restricted to miniature tall bearded (MTB) irises. It is named in honor of E. B. Williamson (1877-1933), his daughter Mary Williamson (1909-1987) and Alice White (1886-1969).  

On the AIS Awards page, Clarence Mahan tell us that "although others had introduced irises that fit into the miniature tall bearded iris class before
Williamson, he and his daughter were the first to breed them as cultivars in a distinctive class of irises."
"In the early 1950's, Alice White of Hemet, California began a crusade to gain recognition of the assets of these wonderful smaller irises. She organized table iris robins and wrote many articles for the AIS Bulletin and gardening magazines promoting their virtues. She encouraged iris hybridizers to breed these irises to obtain new and finer cultivars. She led the campaign to have a separate class established for table irises. When the class was finally approved, Alice White graciously accepted the name "miniature tall bearded" irises, although she always preferred to call them table irises."  

"Peebee and Jay" Photo credit Stout Gardens at Dancingtree

The description from the AIS Wiki says the following:
'Peebee And Jay' (Barbara & David Schmieder, R. 2005). Sdlg. 98-BP-1. MTB, 22" (56 cm), M. S. and style arms near moderate orange (RHS 166D); F. near strong purple (83C), thin rim similar to color of S., some white lines at haft; beards light yellow (10B). 'Bangles' X 'Pardner'. Hermit Medlars Walk 2006. HM 2009, AM 2011; Williamson-White Medal 2013.

For more information on Miniature Tall Bearded Irises, please visit the Dwarf Iris Society Webpage.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Wister Winners: Three Beauties Top the Tall Beardeds in 2013

by Evey Blalock

Please join us in congratulating the winners of the 2013 John C. Wister Memorial Medal: 'Absolute Treasure' (Tasco 2006), ‘Elizabethan Age’ (Baumunk 2005) and ‘Ink Patterns’ (T. Johnson 2007).

The John C. Wister Memorial Medal is the highest award given by The American Iris Society to irises in the tall bearded (TB) class. This medal was first awarded in 1993, recognizing one tall bearded iris annually. Beginning in 1998, the selection process was changed to recognize three tall bearded irises each year. On the AIS website, Clarence Mahan provides this information regarding the medal's namesake, John C. Wister (1887-1982): "John C. Wister led the organizing meeting that created the American Iris Society and became its first president, a position he held for fourteen years. He guided the society through its formative years. He was widely recognized as a man of rare management skill, leadership ability, and the highest ethical standards. R. S. Sturtevant wrote of him: 'Probably few current members realize that the AIS started through the efforts and initiative of one man, John C. Wister....' "  (Photo of award courtesy of Rick Tasco.)

Let’s take a closer look at this year’s winners!

‘Absolute Treasure’ is registered with the following descriptive information: 42" (107 cm), mid bloom season. Sky blue self, style arms slightly lighter toward back, falls slightly lighter centers; beards white, tipped golden yellow in middle and throat, frosty white at end; heavily ruffled; slight sweet fragrance. 'Sudden Impact' X 'Color Me Blue'. Superstition 2006. Honorable Mention 2008, Award of Merit 2010; Wister Medal 2013.

Rick Tasco, hybridizer and co-owner of Superstition Iris Gardens, shared the following comments about his lovely iris: “I'm very proud of ‘Absolute Treasure’ since it is the culmination of over a dozen years work, tracing itself all the way back to my very first introduction, ‘Ruffled Goddess’. One of its parents is ‘Sudden Impact’, which is a product of ‘Ruffled Goddess’, thus the lineage. When ‘Absolute Treasure’ was in our seedling patch, before introduction and before it was even named, several well-known AIS Judges, whom we respect very much, promised us great things for this sky blue iris.”

Rick Tasco surrounded by his aptly named 'Absolute Treasure'
(Both photos of 'Absolute Treasure' courtesy of Superstition Iris Gardens.)

‘Elizabethan Age’ is registered with the following descriptive information: 33" (84 cm), early to mid bloom season. S. apricot, washed with translucent purple infusion except at edges; style arms apricot with slight purple highlighting; F. white with apricot rim and hafts, heavily overlaid dark purple in luminata pattern, apricot and white veining showing through white area around beards; beards tangerine, more intense in throat. 678A: (Cheating Heart x PDFF-1: (Prize Drawing x Flights of Fancy)) X County of Kent. Iris Colorado 2005. Honorable Mention 2007, Award of Merit 2009.

Lowell Baumunk, hybridizer, is also a talented photographer. Below is a photographic work by Lowell that combines his iris and the inspiration for its name.

When asked to comment about this beautiful iris, Lowell responded with the following: "When ‘Elizabethan Age’ and its siblings first bloomed, in 2001, I was pleased with their look and their diversity as well as their strong growth habits. There was a range of luminatas (like 'Elizabethan Age'), lumi-plics, glaciatas and plicatas, all with pink or apricot in the ground color. I right away wondered whether 'Elizabethan Age' might have been my prettiest TB to date. The intensity and complexity of the colors and pattern somehow seemed to reflect the same aspects in the work of Shakespeare and the other Elizabethans. And one of its parents, ‘County of Kent’, also has an English-themed name."  

Lowell Baumunk now offers his iris introductions through Stout Gardens. You can see more of his photographs in his online gallery.

Award-winning photograph 'Self Portrait' by Lowell Baumunk

'Ink Patterns' is registered with the following descriptive information: 36" (91 cm), mid to late bloom season. S. and F. white, strong blue-violet stitched edge; style arms dark blue-violet, ruffled; beards white tipped violet blue; slight fragrance. 'American Classic' X 'Royal Estate'. Mid-America 2007. Honorable Mention 2009; Award of Merit 2011; Wister Medal 2013.

A stand of 'Ink Patterns' growing with 'Sharp Dressed Man' and closeup  .
(Photos courtesy of Thomas Johnson, Mid-America Garden)

Thomas Johnson, hybridizer, wrote this about his creation on the Iris Encyclopedia website: “Exuberantly ruffled white flowers have indelible inky blue stitched plicata bands around falls. Standards have wide washed and stitched plicata bands with dotting inside them and lines up midribs. Styles are wonderfully contrasted, inky, dark indigo. A clump of 'Ink Patterns' in the garden is unforgettable. It is sure to catch the judge's eye at shows.” You can see more of Thomas' creations, and perhaps meet one of his friendly and furry garden greeters, at Mid-America Garden.
A complete list of this year's AIS award winners can be found on the Iris Encyclopedia website.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

"Bundle Of Love" 2013 Knowlton Medal winner!

By Mike Unser

The winner of the 2013 Knowlton Medal for best Border Bearded iris is Paul Black's "Bundle Of Love".

'Bundle of Love" Paul Black  Photo credit:  Jan Lauritzen

As found in the Iris Encyclopedia, its official registration information is: 'Bundle Of Love' (registered and introduced 2007). BB, height 26" (66 cm), early to mid season bloom. Standards warm buff pink blending to pale cream-buff band; style arms pale peach; falls white around beard blending to ivory, darkening slightly toward margin, pale gold texture veins and narrow band; beards tangerine; ruffled; slight spicy fragrance. I147A: ('Procession' x B149C: ('Abridged Version' x 91135D)) X 'Dolce'. Mid-America 2007. Honorable Mention 2009; Award of Merit 2011.

The Knowlton Medal is named for Harold Knowlton of Auburndale, Massachusetts, who was a tireless promoter of the border bearded class of irises. For more information on median irises, including border bearded irises, please see the website of the Median Iris Society.

"Bundle of Love" clump  Photo credit Paul Black

Monday, August 19, 2013


By Susanne Holland Spicker

We are pleased to announce the winner of the 2013 Dykes Medal, "THAT'S ALL FOLKS," by hybridizer William Maryott. The giant, ruffled and laced iris, the last introduction by the popular hybridizer, was introduced by Joseph Ghio, 2005.  

A complete list of winners in other categories will be coming soon.

Here's a description of this exceptional iris via the iris WIKI:

2005 Maryott

'That's All Folks' (William Maryott by Joseph Ghio, R. 2004). Seedling DD-117G.  TB, height 40" (102 cm). Mid bloom season. Standards brilliant gold; falls white with gold blending to wide muted gold band; beards gold. Sibling to 'Pure and Simple.'  Bay View 2005.  Honorable Mention 2007; Award of Merit 2009; Wister Medal 2011; American Dykes Medal 2013.

Photo by Magic Valley Iris Society's Photos - 
"That's All Folks"
TB William Maryott by Joe Ghio, 2005,
taken at the Grahams by Jeanette Graham on 5-26-13.

Click here for a complete list of winners on the Iris Encyclopedia website.

Stricken by Irises

By Bryce Williamson

You grow to love some irises over time, but others strike you upon first viewing.  In my case, two of the times I was immediately stricken by the beauty of an iris were in Clara and Ruth Rees's gardens.

I gained my love of velvet-falled irises from seeing their huge clump of "Amigo", an exceptionally beautiful flower.
"Amigo" Courtesy of Mike Lowe from original HIPS website

Another time, I rounded the lattice-work that defined a "room" in their home garden, and found a lovely stalk of "Swan Ballet", showing off why it won the Dykes Medal.
"Swan Ballet" Photo by author

"Swan Ballet" is an important iris in other ways besides being merely beautiful: it won the Dykes Medal, its child "Pacific Panorama" won the Dykes for Neva Sexton, and a child of "Pacific Panorama." "Shipshape," won the Dykes for Stafford Babson.  (I only know of one other example of three generations of irises winning the Dykes:  "Pink Taffeta,"Vanity", and "Beverly Sills.")

"Pacific Panorama" photo by Roland Dejoux

"Shipshape" photo by Colleen Modra

Another iris that struck me the first time I saw it was "Helen McGregor" in the garden of Mrs. Hobbs in Orland, California. She grew mainly older varieties in long rows stretching out through her pecan grove. With a little luck we would also find some of Truman Capote's “windfall pecans” while viewing the flowers.
"Helen McGregor"  Photo by Bluebird Haven Iris Garden
"Helen McGregor" impressed me as so very blue and I was later pleased to find that almost all of the very best current “true” blues go back to this variety.

"Anon" photo by Country Delight Iris
Jim Gibson's wonderful iris (and wonderful parent) "Anon" is stuck in my mind from the San Diego National Iris Convention where it was growing in Archie Owen's yard by a lemon tree. I knew that I had to have this distinctive variety instantly, and I grew it for many years. In one of the great mysteries of iris growing, "Anon" really liked the town of Campbell—it would bloom 10 inches taller here than for Bill Maryott who was just 5 miles away.

The last time I saw Jim Gibson was at a Porterville Regional Iris Tour, at the home of George and Margaret Sutton.  Sprung from his retirement at the rest home, he graced us with his presence and knowledge.  We had a good talk, but it was a little sad to hear him say "I only can make crosses in my mind anymore."  That was the last time I saw the kind man who produced so many lovely and famous flowers. For those of you who are unfamiliar with his work, he was very famous for producing glorious diversity in plicatas.

Are there any irises that struck you from the first time you saw them?  I hope you do- please feel free to tell us about them in the comments section.


This will be my last scheduled post for the blog, but I will occasionally be back as a guest blogger.  I have a few final words about the world of irises.

First, I have enjoyed giving you the history of my local iris society on this blog. When I learned that my local society, The Clara B. Rees Iris Society, had only one picture of Clara, I grew a bit concerned about the loss of history in the world of irises.  This is partly my own fault—I could have and should have done a better job in my younger years taking pictures of people and gardens and preserving them for posterity.  So please, take photos and record the history you are in the process of making in the iris world.

Second, my life has been immeasurably enriched by visiting the iris gardens of others.  Sometimes, though, I worry that fewer people are visiting the gardens of other iris growers and gardeners. How can anyone expand a healthy and thriving iris collection if they don't see the newer varieties in real life? I encourage everyone to get out, meet the interesting people growing irises, and see what the flower looks like in their gardens. Furthermore, hybridizers used to send their seedlings around the country before introduction to test them in various climates. There has been a decline in that practice, which concerns me, since it is a healthy practice for the production of good garden irises.  I'd like to encourage hybridizers who have not tried this to begin, and to thank those who do.

Third, as gardening and agriculture have become more commercial, we are finding that new garden chemicals are not tested on irises; moreover, we don't seem to have many iris growers of a scientific bent who are willing to do that testing.  It's expensive, and of course, a whole post could be written about the horrible effect of the current US depression on iris gardens and plant nurseries in general.  Ten years ago who would have believed that a famous name such as Cooley's Gardens would be closed?  Consider sharing your experiences with these new chemicals and methods with others so that we can continue to enjoy irises for many years to come.

Napa County Iris Gardens, photo by the author

Finally, when I first started growing irises, irises were the favorite perennial in the country. That is not the case today, sadly. With so many fine qualities all of the iris species need to regain their rightful places as pre-eminent American perennials. Toward than end, I am proud to have served on this blog to help re-popularize this magnificent flower.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Perks of the "job"

by Jim Murrain

One of the perks of working with the SIGNA (Species Iris Group of North America) Seed Exchange is meeting people from all over the world that have a keen interest in species Iris.

I sometimes get to see newly collected and named irises like these Chinese selections of Iris tigridia in novel colors. I expect they will become available sometime in the near future.

Also these Japanese seedlings of Iris rossii
The first being typical while the next shows a pale blue flower,

a near white flower,

and an attempt at a double flower. 
This only hints at the untapped potential of this species.

I am also privileged to see photos of very rare and beautiful 
Chinese Iris like I. qinghainica,  

Iris collettii,

and this unusual form of Iris barbatula.

There are also many surprises like this Iris that looks like I. tectorum.

Until you see the gigantic foliage. I. tectorum on steroids?

There are also mysterious irises that appear occasionally on a photo taken 
by a tourist not aware that the Iris was unknown to the rest of the world.

This beauty was captured on film in Northeast India. 
Alas, it was not collected and only exists in the wild.

My final entry today is also a mystery. It was sold by a Chinese nursery to an avid collector in Europe as another species. But, this is Iris new to science. The perplexed owner shared it with a friend who was not satisfied with the mystery and searched for a name to no avail. I hope it will soon be named and another Iris species will grace our gardens.

Fortunately it is self fertile and has set several pods this year. 
My fingers are crossed that we will all get to enjoy this new Iris very soon.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Louisiana Irises: The Best of the Reds Part 2

By Ron Killingsworth

On Monday, I we saw some of the best red Louisiana irises, and I promised you more.  Here are the rest of the best.

'Little Miss Sims' by Frank Chowning 1978
'Little Miss Sims' is registered as "raspberry purple" but looks red in most pictures.  It won a HM in '83.  It is a pretty iris with a nice name.

'Mayan Chief' by Marvin Granger 1965
'Mayan Chief' is registered as "brick red with a light brown overlay".  The huge signals on this iris really make it stand out in the garden.

'Melon Time' by R. Morgan 1983
'Melon Time' is registered as "full red" and is among the almost really reds in my opinion.

'Mighty Rich' by Charles Arny 1982
'Mighty Rich' can be seen in the garden from a hundred feet away.  The huge bright yellow signals really make it stand out.  It is registered as "velvety ruby red" and won a HM in '84.

'Mulberry Mousse' by Sidney Conger 1957
'Mulberry Mousse' is registered as "bright mulberry" and is one of my favorite "oldies but goodies".  A great garden iris and close to being red.

'My Friend Dick' by Richard Butler 1998
'My Friend Dick' is registered as "current red" and has beautiful signals.  It won a HM in '03, an AM in '05 and the MSDM in 2007.

'New Comer' by G. Holleyman 1960
'New Comer' is registered as "deep purplish-red self with green throat".  It certainly has a green throat and the bold signals catch your eye from long distances.  It won a HM in '69.

'Plum Good' by I. Nelson 2001
'Plum Good' was not registered until 2001 but was growing in many gardens for many years before finally being registered.  I love the name!  It is registered as "plum red".

'Professor Neil' by Joe Mertzweiller 1990
'Professor Neil' is one of several tetraploid Louisiana irises hybridized by Joe Mertzweiller and named for his professor friends.  It is registered as "dark red" and won a HM in '95, a AM in '97 and the MSDM in 1999.

'Red Velvet Elvis' by Kevin Vaughn 1996
'Red Velvet Elvis' is registered as "stands velvety dark red" and is really about as red as I have seen in any iris.  It won a HM in 2000, an AM in 2002 and the MSDM in 2005.

'Rhett' by Mary Dunn 1982
'Rhett' is registered as "mahogany red" and is another very pretty red.  To grow this one, you must have Mary Dunn's other introduction,  'Scarlett' (Dunn, M 1998) another nice red.  We would not want  to separate the famous "Gone with the Wind" couple!

'Rich Jewel' by R. Morgan 1994
'Rich Jewel' is registered as "dark violet' but looks more red to me.  It won a HM in '99 and an AM in '02.

'Rose Cartwheel' by Marvin Granger 1980
 'Rose Cartwheel' is one of Marvin's cartwheel forms and is one of my favorite irises.  Although not red, it is a very pretty "rose" color.  It won a HM in '83.

'Wild Cajun' by Henry Rowlan 1989
'Wild Cajun' is registered as "currant red" and has a great Louisiana name.  It won a HM in '93.

'Jazz Hot' by Heather Pryor 1994

'Jazz Hot' is registered as "red edged white" and is an eye catcher with the bright yellow steeple signals on all petals.  It won a HM in 2000 and a AM in 2004.  A beautiful iris and about as red as red can be in today's irises.

Although hybridizers are still working to find the perfect red iris, these all look great in the garden and look red to the eye.  Do you grow any red Louisiana irises? Which of these is your favorite? 
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