Irises forum: "Iris Culture and Hybridizing for Everyone"

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Name: Jan Wax
Mendocino County, N. CA (Zone 9a)
I'm a studio potter.
Hummingbirder Dog Lover Irises Region: California Organic Gardener Dahlias
Garden Art Cat Lover Vegetable Grower Birds Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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janwax
Dec 7, 2016 12:14 PM CST
This book, Iris Culture and Hybridizing for Everyone, was published in 1961 and is out of print. It's by Wilma L. Vallette. I found a copy online and last night began reading it. I know that the information in it is over 50 years old, but it's encyclopedic! The author has collected information from 300 experienced iris growers. I'm "saving" the first chapter for later. All about chromosomes and such - need a clear head for that - and went straight to culture. Already I've discovered ideas I've not seen before. She deals a lot with rot...and suggests the use of Aureomycin and Terramycin to control it, among other things. I googled it, and Aureomycin is still used in cattle feed to control bacterial outbreaks. I wonder if modern irisarians use it?

Another eyebrow-raiser is the use of powdered skim milk mixed with water on the plants!
Raves! Superior irises result! This sounds like an easy one to try.
So much information, I've barely scratched the surface!
"Garden as though you will live forever" -
William Kent, English landscape architect.
[Last edited by janwax - Dec 7, 2016 1:51 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1330621 (1)
WA (Zone 8b)
Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Rebekah
Dec 7, 2016 12:21 PM CST
Sounds like a fascinating read Thumbs up I had historical rose book that talked about using night soil and pig manure as the best fertilizers for roses.....made me smile but it was also fascinating that it mentioned the cities being to sooty to grow healthy roses.... I love history involving people and their plants especially when it covers growing techniques. I'm currently reading about Beatrix Potter's gardening life.
Name: Jan Wax
Mendocino County, N. CA (Zone 9a)
I'm a studio potter.
Hummingbirder Dog Lover Irises Region: California Organic Gardener Dahlias
Garden Art Cat Lover Vegetable Grower Birds Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
janwax
Dec 7, 2016 12:27 PM CST
I'd love to hear anything about Beatrix Potter's garden, Rebekah!
"Garden as though you will live forever" -
William Kent, English landscape architect.
Name: daphne
san diego county, ca (Zone 10a)
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shizen
Dec 7, 2016 2:07 PM CST
thank you for sharing, jan. we all learn something from this knowledgable group.

interesting about the powdered milk. i've used evaporated milk, straight from the can to emulsify an ink stain on clothing before laundering, and diluted 'em' to seal cracks in pottery to make them watertight. it's the casein from the milk when heated in a low temperature oven that flows into the crack and when it dries makes a tight seal.
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
Dec 7, 2016 2:18 PM CST
You have a great winter ahead of you just for reading.
Name: Arlyn
Whiteside County, Illinois (Zone 5a)
Irises Beekeeper Region: Illinois Celebrating Gardening: 2015
crowrita1
Dec 7, 2016 3:41 PM CST
I've used agrastrep17 (agricultural streptomycin) and aueromycin for soft rot....it does work well, better than "bleach water," or Comet. Downside to both these , though , is they are PRETTY strong ! They require "protective equipment" (masks, gloves, long sleeves, etc.), or they can be a danger to the applier !
The "skimmed milk" (or powdered milk), as a fertilizer Shrug! I've not actually tried it, but have read several articles "debunking" it......it IS 'all organic', but there are other fertilizers ....both "chemical and organic" that will give you the same "bang" for less money.
There are lots of culture tips around.....these "old" books are full of them, and , no doubt, most of the advice worked....at least for the person who "discovered it",in THEIR garden. Whether or not it will work for US in OUR garden Shrug! . My advice....get a soil test ! That way you know *exactly* what...if any....amendments your beds need.
Name: Jan Wax
Mendocino County, N. CA (Zone 9a)
I'm a studio potter.
Hummingbirder Dog Lover Irises Region: California Organic Gardener Dahlias
Garden Art Cat Lover Vegetable Grower Birds Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
janwax
Dec 7, 2016 8:59 PM CST
Aw, Arlyn. I love some of the old nostrums! Smiling Magical thinking - I haz it!
"Garden as though you will live forever" -
William Kent, English landscape architect.
Name: Jan Wax
Mendocino County, N. CA (Zone 9a)
I'm a studio potter.
Hummingbirder Dog Lover Irises Region: California Organic Gardener Dahlias
Garden Art Cat Lover Vegetable Grower Birds Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
janwax
Dec 7, 2016 10:30 PM CST
There's so much information in this book! Most of it would probably be not as controversial
as the skim milk treatment. Which I may try anyway!
I just noticed that there's a copy up for auction on ebay.
"Garden as though you will live forever" -
William Kent, English landscape architect.
Name: Jan Wax
Mendocino County, N. CA (Zone 9a)
I'm a studio potter.
Hummingbirder Dog Lover Irises Region: California Organic Gardener Dahlias
Garden Art Cat Lover Vegetable Grower Birds Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
janwax
Dec 8, 2016 12:45 PM CST
I bought a second copy on eBay...for under a dollar! And it's been called "rare" by booksellers. Shipping was a tad excessive. I'll give it to a local friend who's just getting into irises.

I also looked up some facts about aureomyin, after Arlyn's warning. I usually eschew any kind of chemicals in the garden, and I've only ever had one case of rot so far...but I thought it might be a useful tool for treatment if rot comes back, since I seem to be particularly sensitive to bleach and don't use it in the laundry or cleaning. I get respiratory problems when I breathe it in.
What surprised me about aureomycin was to learn that it is regularly fed to cattle, pigs, chickens, etc! And we ingest it when we eat the meat of those animals! I try to always buy organic.

I'm going to start giving a few of my irises the dilute skim milk treatment, just for my own test.. I figure 300 iris growers can't be totally wrong! Whistling
"Garden as though you will live forever" -
William Kent, English landscape architect.
Name: Gabriel/Gabe Rivera
Charlotte, NC (Zone 7b)
German imported, Michigan raised
Region: North Carolina Garden Photography Region: United States of America Hostas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Dog Lover
Garden Procrastinator Daylilies Plant and/or Seed Trader Irises Container Gardener Hybridizer
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Cuzz4short
Dec 8, 2016 6:48 PM CST
I need to get my hands on some books. I'll start looking early tomorrow.
Gimme it and I'll grow it!
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
Dec 8, 2016 6:55 PM CST
Start with The World of Iris if you don't have it.
Name: Mary Ann
Kentucky
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Hostas Hummingbirder Daylilies Birds
Irises Keeps Horses Region: Kentucky Farmer Container Gardener Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Muddymitts
Dec 9, 2016 10:39 AM CST
shizen said:interesting about the powdered milk. i've used evaporated milk, straight from the can to emulsify an ink stain on clothing before laundering.


That's interesting, Daphne. Wonder if that would work to remove ink stains from carpeting? I have a criminal dog who steals pens in the night, and dismantles them on carpeting, leaving obvious ink stains behind........
Thoughts become things -- choose the good ones. (www.tut.com)
Name: Tom
Southern Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Irises Vegetable Grower Butterflies Region: Wisconsin Keeps Horses Cat Lover
Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry Daylilies Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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tveguy3
Dec 9, 2016 1:50 PM CST
It must be the gnomes, Panda wouldn't do that! Whistling
I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion. - Alexander the Great
Name: daphne
san diego county, ca (Zone 10a)
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shizen
Dec 9, 2016 3:40 PM CST
it might mary anne, i would try it first on a small inconspicuous place with a q-tip. this method, spreads the color out a lot so you have to have some way to really "launder" the spot.

the type of milk has to be either cream or evaporated milk ( not condensed, skimmed or low fat milk). it has something to do with the fat content of the milk emulsifying the pigment in the ink, so it can be washed away. Hilarious! wouldn't want your home to smell like baby formula Grumbling Crying altho' your dog might like it. Hilarious!
Name: Mary Ann
Kentucky
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Hostas Hummingbirder Daylilies Birds
Irises Keeps Horses Region: Kentucky Farmer Container Gardener Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
Muddymitts
Dec 9, 2016 7:05 PM CST
tveguy3 said:It must be the gnomes, Panda wouldn't do that! Whistling


Hah! Adorable she is -- but criminally-minded, I'm afraid.................. Rolling my eyes.
Thoughts become things -- choose the good ones. (www.tut.com)
Name: Mary Ann
Kentucky
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: United States of America Hostas Hummingbirder Daylilies Birds
Irises Keeps Horses Region: Kentucky Farmer Container Gardener Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
Muddymitts
Dec 9, 2016 7:08 PM CST
shizen said:it might mary anne, i would try it first on a small inconspicuous place with a q-tip. this method, spreads the color out a lot so you have to have some way to really "launder" the spot.

the type of milk has to be either cream or evaporated milk ( not condensed, skimmed or low fat milk). it has something to do with the fat content of the milk emulsifying the pigment in the ink, so it can be washed away. Hilarious! wouldn't want your home to smell like baby formula Grumbling Crying altho' your dog might like it. Hilarious!


There IS no inconspicuous place!!!!! The spots are right in the middle of *wherever*.......... Sad

I've got a Green Machine. So I'm wondering if I treat them with evaporated milk -- then use the Green Machine right after................... Crossing Fingers!
Thoughts become things -- choose the good ones. (www.tut.com)
Name: Tom
Southern Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Irises Vegetable Grower Butterflies Region: Wisconsin Keeps Horses Cat Lover
Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry Daylilies Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
tveguy3
Dec 10, 2016 5:12 AM CST
I doubt if the milk would harm the rug. I wish I knew that a while back, I threw out a shirt that had a large ink spot on the pocket where a pen leaked. I bought some stuff that was supposed to take out ink, but it didn't work.
I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion. - Alexander the Great
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
Image
irisarian
Dec 10, 2016 3:01 PM CST
Daughter says that nail polish remover will get rid of ink stains. Maybe only fresh ones.
Name: Evelyn
Northern CA Sierra foothills - (Zone 8a)
Region: United States of America Region: California Annuals Bulbs Butterflies Cat Lover
Foliage Fan Irises Organic Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Image
evelyninthegarden
Nov 12, 2017 2:09 AM CST
janwax said:This book, Iris Culture and Hybridizing for Everyone, was published in 1961 and is out of print. It's by Wilma L. Vallette. I found a copy online and last night began reading it. I know that the information in it is over 50 years old, but it's encyclopedic! The author has collected information from 300 experienced iris growers. I'm "saving" the first chapter for later. All about chromosomes and such - need a clear head for that - and went straight to culture. Already I've discovered ideas I've not seen before. She deals a lot with rot...and suggests the use of Aureomycin and Terramycin to control it, among other things. I googled it, and Aureomycin is still used in cattle feed to control bacterial outbreaks. I wonder if modern irisarians use it?

Another eyebrow-raiser is the use of powdered skim milk mixed with water on the plants!
Raves! Superior irises result! This sounds like an easy one to try.
So much information, I've barely scratched the surface!


Jan ~ At what website did you find it?
The more one gardens, the more one learns; and the more one learns, the more one realizes how little one knows.
Vita Sackville-West
Name: Evelyn
Northern CA Sierra foothills - (Zone 8a)
Region: United States of America Region: California Annuals Bulbs Butterflies Cat Lover
Foliage Fan Irises Organic Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Image
evelyninthegarden
Nov 12, 2017 2:27 AM CST
Never mind... I found it, thank you.
The more one gardens, the more one learns; and the more one learns, the more one realizes how little one knows.
Vita Sackville-West

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