Irises forum: Iris that changed color

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Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
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Natalie
May 8, 2012 4:55 PM CST
I've got a bunch of iris that decided to change color. I'm pretty sure that I've lost my mind now, so I thought I'd ask if this is even possible, just to be sure that it's not really me. A neighbor down the street has some that he swears changed color, but I was skeptical. Now it seems to have happened to me!

Anything that you can tell me about this would be most appreciated!

Natalie
Natalie
Name: Brad
iowa (Zone 5a)
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ARUBA1334
May 8, 2012 8:40 PM CST
Not possible for Iris to change color unless hit with round up or some chemical at least that is what I have always been told and I have never had any change color
Name: Dee Stewart
Willamette Valley OR
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irisloverdee
May 8, 2012 9:51 PM CST

Moderator

Once the seed has germinated the color is set for live. Never changes

A couple of things can happen and this is why changing colors always comes up.

A bee pod burst and it was stronger than the color you once had. Several colors crossed over and where you once thought was purple has been overtaken by a yellow say.

D
Denise Stewart
541-259-2343
Snowpeak <url>http://snowpeakiris.com</http>

Name: Katherine Howe
Raytown(Kansas City) MO
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irisawe
May 9, 2012 7:38 AM CST
Could you go into some more detail on what you experienced? I find this interesting because I have heard this before a number of times.

K
Katherine
Name: Dot or Dorothy Parker
Fort Worth TX (Zone 8a)
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Ladylovingdove
May 9, 2012 8:01 AM CST
Irises do NOT change color, just as you cannot change color. Two things can happen, a bee pollinates a flower from a different color, the pod ripens and the seeds fall to the ground and grow and then bloom later in a year or two. So then you have a flower of a different color in the same place.

The other possibility is that a stronger growing variety took over and grew across a weaker variety, thus choking the weaker one out. My irises grow across each other all the time, they spread out all over the place. This is probably what happened.

Dot
Name: Paul
Utah (Zone 5b)
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Paul2032
May 9, 2012 8:11 AM CST
I rescued a median from the garden of a friend who had passed away. Two years later there were bloom stalks of a taller one with different color. At first I thought it had sported but then realized I had just brought some small pieces of the second one home and after a couple of years it had bloomed. I agree with the bee pod theory also. Those seedlings may have been more vigorous and taken over.
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Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
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irisarian
May 9, 2012 1:43 PM CST
There are little pieces of plants left behind that could suddenly flower. Bee pods are quite possible if you don't cut stems after bloom.
Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
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eclayne
May 9, 2012 1:47 PM CST

Plants Admin

There is an interesting article by Jan Sacks in the spring Siberian Iris about color change in (Siberian) iris and the possible factors. The article discusses not only the differences in appearance of iris grown in different geographical locations but in his own gardens. Could depletion/changes of some soil component cause subtle changes to color?
Evan
Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
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irisarian
May 9, 2012 1:54 PM CST
Quite possible is shades of the same color, not yellow to purple etc.
Jan & Marty have been growing siberians since the early 80s.
Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
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eclayne
May 9, 2012 2:01 PM CST

Plants Admin

That's right Lucy. Not Yellow to purple but intensifying or fading of certain colors which dramatically or subtly change overall appearance.

Natalie, what kind of color change are you referring to?
Evan
Name: Natalie
North Central Idaho (Zone 7a)
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Natalie
May 11, 2012 10:46 AM CST
Sorry for the delay in getting back to everyone, and I appreciate all of the replies. I've been out camping and just got home, so I'll get back to this a little later today. I'll see if I can find pictures from last year and post them along with pictures from this year. I still have a couple blooming that were the same as last year, so if I can't find the pics, I'll take new ones.

There were no bee pods as I cut the stalks as soon as they were done, and no crowding of others either. It's really crazy!

Natalie
Natalie

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