Thursday, August 24, 2017


By Susanne Holland Spicker

The American Iris Society is pleased to announce the winners of the John C. Wister Medal for 2017:
'Reckless Abandon', from Keith Keppel; Paul Black's 'Beauty Becomes Her'; and 'Black Is Black' by Schreiner's. 

'RECKLESS ABANDON' (Keppel '09) Photo courtesy of Keith Keppel

'RECKLESS ABANDON' (Keith Keppel '09)  TB 36" mid-season bloom. Standards center sulphur to citron yellow, changing to warm white texture veined yellow toward outer portion, narrow 1/8" dandelion edge; crests dandelion; falls burgundy  black, large central area white to cream strongly veined burgundy black; beards solid deep chrome to cadmium yellow. The hybridizer notes that the iris is a complicated composition that is decidedly different. It is ruffled and lightly laced. It has 3 branches and terminals carry up to 12 buds. HM 2012, AM 2014, The John C. Wister Medal 2017.

'BEAUTY BECOMES HER' (Paul Black '10) Photo courtesy of Mid-America Iris

'BEAUTY BECOMES HER' (Paul Black '10) TB 42" Mid-Very Late bloom season. Standards and style arms medium dark yellow; falls pale yellow blending to medium yellow edge; beards medium yellow, light yellow at end; slight musky fragrance. Heavily ruffled and lightly laced. Strong, tall show stalks. Robust. The stunning beauty has classic form and style. HM 2012, AM 2014, Wister 2017.

'Black Is Black' (Schreiners '10) Photo courtesy of Schreiner's Iris

'BLACK IS BLACK' (Schreiner '10) TB 37" Mid season bloom. Standards and falls black; beards black. With ruffled, velvety onyx black petals and ebony beards, this black self has well-branched stems with triple-socketed buds, consistently yielding 9-12 buds. HM 2012, AM 2014, Wister 2017.

We congratulate each of these hybridizers and applaud their efforts on these superb irises. 

For a full list of the American Iris Society's 2017 award recipients, click on the link here: AIS 2017 award medalists

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