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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