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Dec 13, 2016 12:11 PM CST
Name: Lilli
Lundby, Denmark, EU
Irises Roses Bulbs Hellebores Foliage Fan Cottage Gardener
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Seed Starter Winter Sowing Bee Lover Dog Lover Region: Europe
After many years as one of the most famous and beloved iris hybridizing nurseries in the world, Australia's Tempo Two run by Lesley and Barry Blyth is set to close after the 2017 season.

While this is sad for iris lovers everywhere, I think we should celebrate their many years working with irises by posting our favorite Blyth irises. There sure is a lot to choose from! I tip my hat to you.

The first irises I think of when someone mention the Blyths are:

(1990) Named for Barry's mum. Can be found in the pedigree of many of his later irises, same as


(1991) One of the first Blyths to ever make my iris wish list. (Still looking!)


(2015) To me, this is a quintessential Barry Blyth iris - and, no surprise, it has Adoree in its pedigree.

This is the only iris by Lesley Blyth that I have (on order this year):

(2010) With both name and colours to warm the heart!

And finally:

(2007) The iris which has resided on my wish list longer than any other. I am still looking for it and one day I hope to add it to my modest, but much loved collection of Blyth irises.

Do you have a favorite Blyth iris? Or ten?

Please post away! Thank You!
Of course I talk to myself; sometimes I need expert advice!
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Dec 13, 2016 12:17 PM CST
Name: Paul
Utah (Zone 5b)
Grandchildren are my greatest joy.
Annuals Enjoys or suffers cold winters Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Garden Procrastinator Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Plays in the sandbox
Tender Perennials Tomato Heads The WITWIT Badge Region: Utah Vegetable Grower Hybridizer
Does this mean that Blyth will no longer be Hybridizing and have his new things introduced and distributed by some one else?
Paul Smith Pleasant Grove, Utah
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Dec 13, 2016 12:57 PM CST
Name: Lilli
Lundby, Denmark, EU
Irises Roses Bulbs Hellebores Foliage Fan Cottage Gardener
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Seed Starter Winter Sowing Bee Lover Dog Lover Region: Europe
According to the post on the Mid America Facebook page, they will continue his work, but it does not list any details.
Of course I talk to myself; sometimes I need expert advice!
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Dec 13, 2016 1:22 PM CST
Name: Liz
East Dover, VT (Zone 5a)
Annuals Irises Lilies Region: Northeast US Organic Gardener Peonies
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Seed Starter Enjoys or suffers hot summers Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Hummingbirder
I was adding onto my order today and expressed my sadness for their closing. He sent me this attachment:

Hi ,

The time has come for Tempo Two to close and for us to retire and take things easy.
Our family has had a nursery since 1890, starting in Christchurch in England.
Barry’s great grandfather started it and it was continued in England until 1966.
It was called Riverslea Nurseries and they specialised in Alpines and Perennials including some Iris.. My grandfather left the family business in the early 1900’s and migrated to Australia where he began a nursery at Bayswater in Victoria. This continued until about 1955 when he retired early due to war injuries from WW 1.
His daughter is Barry’s mother (Adoree Pernettya) and she married Charles Blyth and after WW11, they began to grow vegetables and plants, specializing in Iris and Dahlias. This became Sunnyside gardens.
When Charles retired in 1973, Barry and Lesley took over the business and changed it’s name to Tempo Two.
So it has been going a long time. Now Barry is 75 and Lesley is 73 and we have decided to close the nursery and slow down.
The last export orders will be sent out in April and the Australian orders will continue until about the end of June.
So for those interested, if you wish to add to your current order, please feel free to do so. If you have not ordered and were thinking about doing so, last export orders close on March 15, 2017 and cannot be extended.

There are 3 of out current new introductions in our catalogue completely sold out. KISS THE PRINCESS, SWEET AS HONEY and TEND MY HEART. There are also a number of other varieties through the catalogue that are also sold out. So if ordering any of the older varieties, please list acceptable substitutes or clearly mark the order NO SUBS.

In the future Thomas Johnson, the owner Of Mid America Gardens in Salem Oregon USA will be introducing some new varieties from us when he has the stock acclimatized and has sufficient plants to catalogue. This will take at least 2 to 3 years to happen. In the mean time he does catalogue some of our older introductions, so check out his website and he will have a new catalogue out in the early part of 2017. He is also happy to export to most countries around the world.

Thank you to all of our customers for your loyal support. We have loved growing and hybridizing Iris and really enjoyed hearing how much you all have enjoyed growing Blyth introductions in so many countries and regions. We see many of them appearing in Iris pedigrees all over the world and are pleased that we have contributed a little to this marvellous genus IRIS.

Barry & Lesley Blyth
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Dec 13, 2016 2:15 PM CST
(Zone 9b)
Region: California Garden Ideas: Level 1
That's some sad news for iris lovers, but I wish them the best in their retirement.
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Dec 13, 2016 2:35 PM CST
Name: Tom
Southern Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Butterflies Vegetable Grower Keeper of Poultry Irises Keeps Horses Dog Lover
Daylilies Cat Lover Region: Wisconsin Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Yes it's sad, but what a legacy! I tip my hat to you.
Voltaire: "Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities,"
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Dec 13, 2016 2:42 PM CST
Name: Leslie
Durham, NC (Zone 8a)
Garden Photography Cat Lover Irises Region: North Carolina Peonies Enjoys or suffers hot summers
Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Still in a daze about this. I was hoping to add more Dragons.... *sigh*

I do have some favorites, and also some that have yet to bloom that I am eagerly awaiting.

The first Blyth iris I got were both dwarfs.



There were many that I kept hoping would finally reach our shores. Since Mid-America has a large collection of dwarfs, I hope they add some of the Blyth ones to their stock.

I also love my BB Thundery
"The chimera is a one time happenstance event where the plant has a senior moment and forgets what it is doing." - Paul Black
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Dec 13, 2016 3:17 PM CST
Name: Robin
Melbourne, Australia (Zone 10b)
Region: Australia Garden Photography Cat Lover Irises Seed Starter
I knew that Barry and Lesley were reducing their range and that they would retire one day, but for some reason this feels very sudden. I just received my Tempo Two order and now I am going to place another order for a few irises I want and thought I couldn't fit in my garden. It is like the theory about how many people can fit into an elevator - there is always room for one more. I wish I'd bought Kiss the Princess Sad
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Dec 13, 2016 3:18 PM CST
Name: Liz
East Dover, VT (Zone 5a)
Annuals Irises Lilies Region: Northeast US Organic Gardener Peonies
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Seed Starter Enjoys or suffers hot summers Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Hummingbirder
Leslie, Robin and Keith both have Dragon Kiss and Dance with Dragons.
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Dec 13, 2016 3:32 PM CST
Name: Jan Wax
Mendocino County, N. CA (Zone 9a)
I'm a semi-retired studio potter.
Dog Lover Hummingbirder Organic Gardener Daylilies Region: Ukraine Region: California
Irises Dahlias Garden Art Cat Lover Vegetable Grower Birds
The end of a great run by the Blyths. Bravo! I tip my hat to you. What a legacy, indeed!
I've had a few irises for a long time, but only became addicted about 3 or 4 seasons ago. One of the first Blyths to set me sighing was Coffee Shop. It's peachy-beigeness blooms very early in my garden.
BB Code:

My last year's splurge was their intro - She. Looking forward to seeing her bloom.

BB Code:

I have over 100 Blyths - although some are included in the search that are wants. So many are favorites.
Last edited by janwax Dec 13, 2016 3:35 PM Icon for preview
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Dec 13, 2016 3:37 PM CST
Name: Liz
East Dover, VT (Zone 5a)
Annuals Irises Lilies Region: Northeast US Organic Gardener Peonies
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Seed Starter Enjoys or suffers hot summers Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Hummingbirder
She is stunning, you're very lucky Jan. I'm sad it wasn't offered this year. Maybe Mid-America will end up carrying it.
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Dec 13, 2016 3:46 PM CST
Name: Jan Wax
Mendocino County, N. CA (Zone 9a)
I'm a semi-retired studio potter.
Dog Lover Hummingbirder Organic Gardener Daylilies Region: Ukraine Region: California
Irises Dahlias Garden Art Cat Lover Vegetable Grower Birds
Liz - she's making increases, so maybe I'll have one or two to share or trade. Crossing Fingers!
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Dec 13, 2016 3:49 PM CST
Name: Liz
East Dover, VT (Zone 5a)
Annuals Irises Lilies Region: Northeast US Organic Gardener Peonies
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Seed Starter Enjoys or suffers hot summers Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Hummingbirder
I'm so excited for your pictures. The lace and ruffles make my heart pitter patter. Lovey dubby
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Dec 13, 2016 7:15 PM CST
Name: Niki
Bend, Oregon (Zone 6a)
Flowers are food for the soul.
Bee Lover Butterflies Daylilies Dragonflies Frogs and Toads Hummingbirder
Irises Region: Oregon Organic Gardener
'Coffee Trader' was a must have after visiting Schreiner's Iris garden last year.
"The Earth laughs in flowers."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Dec 13, 2016 7:52 PM CST
Name: Lucy
Hamilton, MA (Zone 6b)
irises
Charter ATP Member Cottage Gardener Irises Region: Northeast US Region: United Kingdom Region: United States of America
Enjoys or suffers cold winters
SDB growers are so grateful for Barry's work with pink
coming to the height with the introduction of 'Chanted.
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Dec 13, 2016 10:12 PM CST
Name: Bonnie Sojourner
Harris Brake Lake, Arkansas (Zone 7a)
Magnolia zone
Region: United States of America Region: Arkansas Master Gardener: Arkansas Irises Plant and/or Seed Trader Moon Gardener
Garden Ideas: Master Level Dragonflies Bulbs Garden Art Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Gardens in Buckets
It is always sad or us when one of our iris heroes retires. I hope they have a long and happy retirement. Some of my favorite Blyth's are the SDB's but all of his irises are beautiful. Here are just a few that bloomed in my garden last spring.

SDB Awake


SDB Chanted
Thumb of 2016-12-14/grannysgarden/769016

SDB Wee Stroll
Thumb of 2016-12-14/grannysgarden/b3ec5c

SDB Buster


ADB Making Eyes


I am still waiting for a few to bloom such as Forfun and I am still looking for a few to add to my garden.
Thro' all the tumult and the strife I hear the music ringing; It finds an echo in my soul— How can I keep from singing?
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Dec 13, 2016 10:16 PM CST
Name: Liz
East Dover, VT (Zone 5a)
Annuals Irises Lilies Region: Northeast US Organic Gardener Peonies
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Seed Starter Enjoys or suffers hot summers Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Hummingbirder
We have a great selection of TBs in the states but I really wish there were more medians readily available.
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Dec 13, 2016 10:18 PM CST
Name: Bonnie Sojourner
Harris Brake Lake, Arkansas (Zone 7a)
Magnolia zone
Region: United States of America Region: Arkansas Master Gardener: Arkansas Irises Plant and/or Seed Trader Moon Gardener
Garden Ideas: Master Level Dragonflies Bulbs Garden Art Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Gardens in Buckets
I agree Liz. He has so many wonderful medians and few were imported early on. When imports started becoming more prevalent the newer ones were favored. That makes the older ones really hard to find now.
Thro' all the tumult and the strife I hear the music ringing; It finds an echo in my soul— How can I keep from singing?
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Dec 13, 2016 10:24 PM CST
Name: Paul
Utah (Zone 5b)
Grandchildren are my greatest joy.
Annuals Enjoys or suffers cold winters Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Garden Procrastinator Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Plays in the sandbox
Tender Perennials Tomato Heads The WITWIT Badge Region: Utah Vegetable Grower Hybridizer
Two of my favorites came as bonuses in an order from Keith Keppel. Both are IBs. When they bloomed it was a pleasant surprise.
Glances


Thumb of 2016-12-14/Paul2032/1305b6Glances


Toffee


Toffee
Paul Smith Pleasant Grove, Utah
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Dec 13, 2016 10:30 PM CST
Name: Bonnie Sojourner
Harris Brake Lake, Arkansas (Zone 7a)
Magnolia zone
Region: United States of America Region: Arkansas Master Gardener: Arkansas Irises Plant and/or Seed Trader Moon Gardener
Garden Ideas: Master Level Dragonflies Bulbs Garden Art Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Gardens in Buckets
This is a photo from the database of SDB Whydidi. It is not a really old one, 2002 I think, but I have not found a source for it. Really pretty and a rebloomer.
Thro' all the tumult and the strife I hear the music ringing; It finds an echo in my soul— How can I keep from singing?

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