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Avatar for afytexas
Jan 12, 2018 9:50 AM CST
deep East Tx. zone 8
Hi, Can someone tell me how to cross pollinate some of my irises. I have some very pretty ones and would like seeds from them. Is this possible and how is it done. Thanks alda
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Jan 12, 2018 1:59 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
If you're talking about bearded irises there are several good videos on Youtube demonstrating the process:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

There're more - just do a search for 'iris pollination' or 'iris breeding'.
Of course I talk to myself; sometimes I need expert advice!
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Jan 12, 2018 2:00 PM CST
Northern CA (Zone 9a)
Region: California Cat Lover Dog Lover Irises Enjoys or suffers hot summers
Welcome! afytexas to the iris forum.
Here are two you tube videos that Lilli posted a while ago.
https://garden.org/thread/view...
• “Whoever said, ‘Do something right and you won’t have to do it again’ never weeded a garden.” – Anonymous
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Jan 12, 2018 2:01 PM CST
Northern CA (Zone 9a)
Region: California Cat Lover Dog Lover Irises Enjoys or suffers hot summers
Cross posted with Lilli. nodding
• “Whoever said, ‘Do something right and you won’t have to do it again’ never weeded a garden.” – Anonymous
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Jan 12, 2018 2:06 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
Big Grin I looked for them, but just couldn't find that post! Thank You! Barbara! I tip my hat to you.
Of course I talk to myself; sometimes I need expert advice!
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Jan 12, 2018 2:12 PM CST
Northern CA (Zone 9a)
Region: California Cat Lover Dog Lover Irises Enjoys or suffers hot summers
I starred (now call bookmark) your post. nodding so thank you.
• “Whoever said, ‘Do something right and you won’t have to do it again’ never weeded a garden.” – Anonymous
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Jan 12, 2018 2:12 PM CST
Name: Evelyn
Sierra foothills, Northern CA (Zone 8a)
Irises Region: Ukraine Garden Procrastinator Bee Lover Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader
Region: California Cat Lover Deer Bulbs Foliage Fan Annuals
Alda ~ Welcome! to the Iris Forum!

Good luck! Crossing Fingers!
"Luck favors the prepared mind." - Thomas Jefferson
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Jan 12, 2018 2:51 PM CST
Name: Robin
Melbourne, Australia (Zone 10b)
Region: Australia Garden Photography Cat Lover Irises Seed Starter
Welcome! Alda
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Jan 12, 2018 2:55 PM CST
(Zone 9b)
Region: California Garden Ideas: Level 1
Welcome to the funny farm Alda. Welcome!
Avatar for afytexas
Jan 12, 2018 3:39 PM CST
deep East Tx. zone 8
Thanks everyone. But I can't get video on my computer. It came over on the Mayflower and I do good to get anything on it. I can get emails but no video. Alday
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Jan 12, 2018 4:00 PM CST
Name: Robin
Melbourne, Australia (Zone 10b)
Region: Australia Garden Photography Cat Lover Irises Seed Starter
This is from the Australian Iris Society website
http://www.irises.org.au/Hybri...

and Schreiners
https://www.schreinersgardens....
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Jan 12, 2018 7:25 PM CST
Name: daphne
san diego county, ca (Zone 10a)
Vermiculture Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Welcome! alday

also, look on this forum for a post with hybridizing in the title, you'll find many helpful hints and suggestions in posts. those posts contain information that some irises are better pollen parents or pod parents, and vice versa. or other hints for stratifying your seeds, and natural chemicals, or teas that help prevent mold or mildew from forming on your seeds and seedlings.

there's a wealth of info.....😃good luck!
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Jan 13, 2018 2:30 AM 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
Schreiner has a short description of what to do (picture, but no video) when crossing two irises:
https://www.schreinersgardens....
Of course I talk to myself; sometimes I need expert advice!
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Jan 13, 2018 1:21 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
I realized something last night, reading an old book on irises. The author points out that a single tiny grain of pollen can fertilize the stigma of an iris - and realizing that I've been using a soft artists' brush to gather pollen for fertilization, just ruffling the hairs of the brush to eject any remaining bits from a previous pollination. WRONG!(that may account for a mystery crossing!)
The author recommends cleaning the brush with alcohol - but, better than using a brush, use tweezers!

Another method is to remove all petals, leaving the anthers exposed, taking the naked blossom to the waiting "female" parts of the other
iris and rubbing the pollen on it - without any intermediary, like brushes, tweezers or fingers!
Last edited by janwax Jan 13, 2018 1:31 PM Icon for preview
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Jan 13, 2018 2:17 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
If you use a brush and pollen from more then one bloom, you are for sure going to get a mish mash of unknown offspring. I sometimes take apart a bloom and use it as a tool for pollen, if it's a bloom that I have a lot of, otherwise I use a tweezers and clean it between crosses. Even though the tweezers doesn't touch to bloom being crossed. Have to clean your fingers between crosses too.
Politicians are like diapers, they need to be changed often, and for the same reason.
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Jan 13, 2018 3:24 PM CST
Name: Evelyn
Sierra foothills, Northern CA (Zone 8a)
Irises Region: Ukraine Garden Procrastinator Bee Lover Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader
Region: California Cat Lover Deer Bulbs Foliage Fan Annuals
Tom and Jan ~ All important points. I can see it would be easy to have unknown pollen in the process, making a mess of your plans.
"Luck favors the prepared mind." - Thomas Jefferson
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Jan 13, 2018 4:09 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
We use locking forceps, easier to hang on to the little anther, especially as I am crossing the smaller irises, not tall bearded.
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Jan 13, 2018 9:04 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
tveguy3 said:If you use a brush and pollen from more then one bloom, you are for sure going to get a mish mash of unknown offspring. I sometimes take apart a bloom and use it as a tool for pollen, if it's a bloom that I have a lot of, otherwise I use a tweezers and clean it between crosses. Even though the tweezers doesn't touch to bloom being crossed. Have to clean your fingers between crosses too.


Sometimes it seems like life is just one long lesson! Rolling my eyes.
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Jan 14, 2018 8:33 AM 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
I agree with Tom - use tweezers (or forceps like Lucy does) and make sure you clean them after each cross.

...and yes, life is one long lesson - if you're willing to learn! Big Grin
Of course I talk to myself; sometimes I need expert advice!
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Jan 14, 2018 10:22 AM 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
"too soon old; too late smart" !

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