Thursday, August 19, 2021

The American Iris Society Announces the 2021 Sass Medal Winners


The Sass Medal is restricted to intermediate bearded (IB) irises. It is named in honor of Hans Sass

(1868-1949) and Jacob Sass (1872-1945). They bred irises, peonies, daylilies, lilacs, gladiolus, lilies and other garden plants. When they became charter members of the AIS, they had been breeding irises

for more than a decade. Their irises were famous for being strong growers because they used 'Amas' and I. trojana as tetraploid stud irises instead of the tender I. mesopotamia and I. cypriana.

Editor’s Note: Due to the pandemic last year, the American Iris Society Board of Directors suspended garden awards. As a result, and for only this year, two medals will be award in this area. Previous awards winners can be found at

BACKLIT BEAUTY--image by Richard Tasco

'Backlit Beauty' (Richard Tasco, R. 2010) Seedling #01-IB-49-01. IB, 25" (64 cm), Late midseason bloom. Standards rosy spectrum violet (RHS 82B) lightly veined white, color blends out to white edges and side bottoms; style arms white, slight lilac blush near midribs; falls darker bishops violet (81A) lightening toward edges, lightly veined around beards to shoulders, bright canary yellow at top of petal; beards white base tipped tangerine in throat and middle, canary yellow at end; lightly ruffled, luminata; slight fragrance. 'Spirit World' X 'Iced Wine'. Superstition 2010.

CODE OF HONOR--image by Mid-America

'Code Of Honor' (Thomas Johnson, R. 2013). Seedling #TB91A. IB, 25" (64 cm), Midseason bloom. Icy blue-white self; beards medium blue; slight fragrance. 'Bluebeard's Ghost' X 'Mythology'. Mid-America 2013.

The World of Irises blog will be posting classification medal winners as soon as the hybridizers are notified. The entire list of winners, including award of merit and honorable mention, will be published in the AIS website, the AIS Encyclopedia, and later in the AIS Bulletin, IRISES.

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