Irises forum: Iris parentage

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Oklahoma (Zone 7a)
Roses Irises Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Region: Oklahoma Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Rebekah
Jul 15, 2020 1:49 PM CST
Ok, I know not everyone has the time and maybe not the inclination to plan crosses with their irises. But I'm sure the thought has crossed every growers mind at least a few times.
Is there an iris or two in your garden, that just needs to be used in a breeding program? Scent, form, substance some mesmerizing detail or is just an unstoppable Molly Brown? Is it a noid, old variety or just somehow overlooked and needs to be defended for its virtues? Are there irises in your garden that just need to be parents. I'm just curious because there are so many different tastes in iris fashion I'd love to hear what ya'll fancy? Lovey dubby
Name: Evelyn
Sierra foothills, Northern CA (Zone 8a)
Garden Procrastinator Irises Bee Lover Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: California
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evelyninthegarden
Jul 15, 2020 2:27 PM CST
Rebekah ~ Well, since you asked, I made a few crosses in 2018 that I thought had good qualities. Still, when crosses are made, the outcome cannot be predicted accurately. I notice when I look up parentage of irises and find the result unlikely or just something that doesn't resemble either parent.

Sometimes it is a cross with many different fancy irises, and the result is a self or plain one. Rebekah, you are right in wanting to select good qualities, and sometimes that takes several years of growing them to be able to determine the good qualities. So maybe next year I can see if any of the good qualities came through.

As to giving you ideas for irises to cross, there are many award-winning irises that may give you better chances. Many only use Dykes Medal winners in that regard. So then you stand a chance to get a good quality cross. And then some use various irises, and keep crossing them until they get the result of what they are expecting.

Good luck in your adventures! Crossing Fingers!
"Luck favors the prepared mind." - Thomas Jefferson
Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
irises
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irisarian
Jul 15, 2020 8:48 PM CST
certainly use irises which grow well in your region, then branch out for other interesting traits.
Name: Evelyn
Sierra foothills, Northern CA (Zone 8a)
Garden Procrastinator Irises Bee Lover Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: California
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evelyninthegarden
Jul 15, 2020 9:55 PM CST
Lucy ~ Good advice! Thumbs up
"Luck favors the prepared mind." - Thomas Jefferson
Oklahoma (Zone 7a)
Roses Irises Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Region: Oklahoma Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Rebekah
Jul 17, 2020 4:03 PM CST
Thanks Evelyn, You are so right about offspring possibly being bland (one color selfs) or looking nothing like their parents. I've been hybridizing for a few years though my focus has mostly been roses. I've only recently started to play with irises, I'm well aware the plant genetics don't usually play out they way one would expect. With roses the most common colors are pink and then white. So usually if those colors are kept by a hybridizer there must be something spectacular about them. Those colors are often the healthiest because the more difficult colored roses are usually the result of a breeder specifically selecting for that color and other important features fall by the wayside. That's just part of pursuing different traits. The roses that came out of the 60, 70's and 80 really focused mostly on a selecting hybrid teas with high point centers and tight buds but what they failed to consider was health of the plants. I would argue, overall attractiveness of the plants was also overlooked. Now there is a sizable resurgence of roses growers and I believe it's largely due to David Austin's roses. He used heritage roses and bred them with repeat blooming modern shrubs to create something many people are attracted to. Something softer and more romantic. His captivating roses reminded me specifically of the Dutch painters. I am always looking for more information on traits and genetics. Though right now I not looking for irises myself. I just like to see what details iris growers have fallen in love with. I myself Love Haunted heart it's soft purplish-gray falls are so lovely to me. I crossed it with most anything in my garden. But that's just one. I'm really a sucker for what many would probably call muddy :D it's very popular with roses in the florist industry right now, that and some crazy proliferation. The variegated varieties are quirky and I think there room for them in most any garden.


[Last edited by Rebekah - Jul 17, 2020 5:16 PM (+)]
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Oklahoma (Zone 7a)
Roses Irises Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Region: Oklahoma Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Rebekah
Jul 17, 2020 4:05 PM CST
Sorry it's hard to write With paragraphs on my phone.
Name: Robin
Melbourne, Australia (Zone 10b)
Region: Australia Irises Garden Photography Cat Lover Seed Starter
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Totally_Amazing
Jul 17, 2020 8:04 PM CST
I tend to choose irises for breeding base on a theme. Lately I have been trying to produce broken patterns. I have also thought about just picking 2 of my favourites and crossing them with no goal in mind.
Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
irises
Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: United Kingdom Region: Northeast US Irises
Region: United States of America
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irisarian
Jul 17, 2020 8:57 PM CST
I work with medians. SDBs I was trying for a red amoena (trying to get the red to cover the entire fall) so far not successful.

trial cross on MTBs produced 4 different colored siblings: Ginger Treat introduced
Thumb of 2020-07-18/irisarian/ebc45a


Thumb of 2020-07-18/irisarian/c9779a red growing a Winterberry


Thumb of 2020-07-18/irisarian/b0376e dark purple still here



Thumb of 2020-07-18/irisarian/4c1ebd violet still here. 4 plants out of the same cross with the more unusual color presented for introduction first.

Name: Barbara
Northern CA (Zone 9a)
Region: California Cat Lover Irises Enjoys or suffers hot summers Dog Lover
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iciris
Jul 17, 2020 9:58 PM CST
Very pretty Lucy. Lovey dubby
• “Whoever said, ‘Do something right and you won’t have to do it again’ never weeded a garden.” – Anonymous
Name: Evelyn
Sierra foothills, Northern CA (Zone 8a)
Garden Procrastinator Irises Bee Lover Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: California
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evelyninthegarden
Jul 17, 2020 10:15 PM CST
iciris said:Very pretty Lucy. Lovey dubby


I agree Lovey dubby
"Luck favors the prepared mind." - Thomas Jefferson
Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
irises
Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: United Kingdom Region: Northeast US Irises
Region: United States of America
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irisarian
Jul 18, 2020 5:56 AM CST
so one goes on from there. The red should get crossed to Hot News a red, realizing that it is pod fertile only. Not sure what to do with Ginger Treat as yet, it is an unusual color. I am sure that Robin has other broken patterns in her garden if she wishes to work with them. Certainly no 2 alike there.
Oklahoma (Zone 7a)
Roses Irises Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Region: Oklahoma Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Rebekah
Jul 18, 2020 6:28 AM CST
Robin that last bit about just making crosses is pretty much what I did last season. LoL usually I have a goal, but at the time I just wanted to see what would happen. The one cross I made with a goal was Haunted Heart x Low Ho Silver. I was hoping to get a short quick multiplier( specifically for my garden bed) with Little interruption to Haunted heart's pigment but who knows.
Oklahoma (Zone 7a)
Roses Irises Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Region: Oklahoma Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Rebekah
Jul 18, 2020 6:42 AM CST
Thank You! Lucy for sharing the sibling pics! So even thought your still working on your goal you stumble across something unique! That really is exciting! The MTBs are lovely and there size makes them so cute. Do you get to the maiden blooms more quickly with this class?
Oklahoma (Zone 7a)
Roses Irises Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses Region: Oklahoma Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Rebekah
Jul 18, 2020 6:48 AM CST
Lucy or anyone really, do you refrigerate pollen for crosses? If you do, do you use those desiccating packets they put in pill jars? Or do anything special to preserve the pollen?
Name: Kim. hnybee09
Jamestown NC (Zone 7b)
Irises
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hnybee09
Jul 18, 2020 8:10 AM CST
I would love to learn how to do this! I know there are video's I have them bookmarked just have not had time to study. I guess that is what the winter is for, studying and planning. I have a few ideas on what I would like to try.
Name: Evelyn
Sierra foothills, Northern CA (Zone 8a)
Garden Procrastinator Irises Bee Lover Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: California
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evelyninthegarden
Jul 18, 2020 11:55 AM CST
Ah, so many new, young hybridizers!

That is wonderful. As much material that is out there to get you started, in my opinion, it is "on the job training", since each iris is unique and you all have different ideas of what makes a beautiful iris.

Yes, it is good to study as much as possible, but in the long run, being consistent with your activities, keeping good records, and being able to discard the ones that are not up to standards, should give good results in the end.

The hardest part is the waiting.
"Luck favors the prepared mind." - Thomas Jefferson
[Last edited by evelyninthegarden - Jul 18, 2020 11:30 PM (+)]
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Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
irises
Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: United Kingdom Region: Northeast US Irises
Region: United States of America
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irisarian
Jul 18, 2020 8:16 PM CST
with MTBs I am working with diploids. You can see by the photos that crossing a yellow & a purple brought out 4 different colors. Those of you working with tet TBs can realize multiple colors. I could use pollen right away in that cross. When working with some plants (I. pumila crossed on tet MTB) I have to refrigerate because of different time of bloom. I use small envelopes in a container using descant used for flower arranging. I ran out of it & not having a place for replacement substituted cornstarch this year. Not sure if it worked.

In a BB cross (tet) lavender x yellow & purple X yellow one a species (Annikins) produced the white Hi Buddy. I was not expecting that. Now white is labeled 'absence of color' or it could mask colors so not sure what is hiding there.
Name: Evelyn
Sierra foothills, Northern CA (Zone 8a)
Garden Procrastinator Irises Bee Lover Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: California
Cat Lover Deer Bulbs Foliage Fan Annuals Seed Starter
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evelyninthegarden
Jul 20, 2020 12:20 PM CST
Lucy ~ If you take vitamins or supplements, they include a package of dessicant in every one of them. I save them all for such purposes.
"Luck favors the prepared mind." - Thomas Jefferson
Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
irises
Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: United Kingdom Region: Northeast US Irises
Region: United States of America
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irisarian
Jul 20, 2020 2:50 PM CST
I don't take them, so that source is out. Good idea however. The pro bioticics jar doesn't have it, kept in refrigerator.

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