Scapes and Stalks: This, apparently, is a sticky subject

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Scapes and Stalks

By Newyorkrita
October 19, 2013

Did you know that daylilies bloom on scapes while irises bloom on stalks?

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Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN, USA zon
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
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Oct 18, 2013 8:38 PM CST
It seem that even the American Daylily Society has conflicting information:
Their image says it's a scape

But according to their own definitions of stalks and scapes:
"The flower stalk is the entire scape above the crown."

"The flower scape is the entire stalk above the crown."

WHAT ????

I didn't happen to find where the iris flower stem is designated.

Technically and botanically speaking:
---- Neither have scapes, as a scape is a leafless flower "stem". Both iris and daylilies have bracts on their flower "stems", and bracts are modified leaves.
---- Both iris and daylilies have stalks, as a stalk is a varying length of "stem" connecting an organ to the rest of the plant. for instance, a leaf stalk is a petiole; a flower stalk is a pedicel.

So that doesn't clear anything up, either.

I'm good with the vernacular, if iris people want to call it a stalk, and daylily people want to call it a scape, or even if they want to use the terms interchangeably. Just say so in no uncertain terms!
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Oct 18, 2013 8:42 PM CST
Just the way it is. When daylily growers talk about flowers, flowers are on scapes. When Iris growers talk about flowers they are on stalks. If you spend time on the Daylily and Iris Forums, that is what you will learn.
Name: Vickie
Elberfeld, Indiana, USA (Zone 6b)
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Oct 19, 2013 5:08 PM CST
I never realized there was a difference before. But I really haven't been on any iris forums, so didn't know they called them stalks.

When in Rome, do as the Romans Smiling
May all your weeds be wildflowers. ~Author Unknown

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