Conventions!

Spring is around the corner and it is my job to give inspiring words that will lift you from the winter doldrums. And I will, but first…

It is with regret that I must tell you that the Siberian/Species Convention hosted by the King County Iris Society will be postponed until 2022. It was decided that we are not far enough along with the Covid vaccination process to make travel possible for all who want to attend, particularly those from outside the U.S. That said, another year’s growth on the Siberian and Species iris in place will not be a bad thing. Please plan to join us in Seattle late May 2022. Look for specific dates and updated registration information in the fall issue.

For me, one of the highlights of the convention was going to be my very first crop of Siberian iris seedlings experiencing their maiden bloom. I was set to have all the great hybridizers, judges, and Siberian lovers here to experience it with me. Alas, when you arrive in 2022, you will only get to see the same old irises that have been around for a year. I have what I think will be great crosses from some of our favorite irises: Blueberry Brandy (Bauer Coble, 2010), Doreen Cambray (Hollingworth, 2007), and Paprikash (Schafer/Sacks, 2012). Keep an eye on the Iris Lover’s Facebook page. I am certain some pictures will end up there.

Some good news might be that I have discovered that one of our local plant collecting legends, Dan Hinkley, has collected a 40-chromosome Siberian species that seems very unusual. He claims it is I. delavayi, but a black form. I have not yet seen it or been able to discuss it with him, but that will change this spring. Perhaps it will be in the garden when you all come next year. This may sound kind of nerdy, but I will own it and say it is super-exciting to me.

Stay safe and sane, and enjoy the upcoming bloom season!

Patrick

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