Monday, May 20, 2013

Seed pod on Immortality Iris

Slapped up the 13th Purple Mom/Black Dad flower that came up. You can find it here: Cross-Pollinated Bearded Iris (Black and Purple)

05/19/13 - Seed pod - Immortality/(Purple Mom x Black Dad 1st)
Geez, that sucker is huge! It just keeps swelling! It's the only seed pod to take so I am rooting for viable seeds inside. The second Immortality seed pod stayed relatively small before it quickly withered away.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Documenting the crossed bearded irises

You know, I think crossing bearded irises might be more fun than crossing amaryllis/hippeastrum... I started a new 'page' on this blog so that I could keep all the results of my crossed bearded irises in one area.

Cross-Pollinated Bearded Iris (Black and Purple)

There's about 3 more coming up for Purple Mom/Black Dad and 1 more coming up for Black Mom/Purple Dad. It's been really interesting to see the results this spring, especially one that popped out with an almost pastel purple.

05/05/13 - 7th
I was told not to get attached to any of the flowers that came up this spring because chances are there aren't any rhizomes to carry on the legacy. Hard to say because they've been growing non-stop since January of 2012, but on closer look, most of the plants are by themselves with no extra plants coming off them. The many that haven't bloomed do have extra rhizomes shooting off the main leaves.

A friend asked me if it bothers me that most of these are one-pop-shots, never to come around again. Nah... It is interesting to see what can happen, even if they never come around again.

This whole experience taught me that you can study up on everything and still be surprised. I was under the impression that bearded iris are very difficult to germinate and that many might wait a year, two years, up to 10 years before they'll decide to germinate; mine exploded after being exposed to just one frost during a mild winter. Just everywhere! pifpifpfpifpifpofpopifpifpifipopifpifpifopipop! I was under the impression that most would be ugly to look at and that I'll most likely trash them but keep one or two I'd like; the ones that have come up, I think, are pretty neat to look at. I haven't wanted to trash any of them yet.

The one thing that did turn out to be utterly true is that every seed really is different. It is beyond incredible how different they are. Some flowers came out really big on tall stalks, some flowers came out small on short stalks, etc.

I have tried my best to cross-pollinate a lot of the siblings. I remember reading somewhere that crossing the siblings would cause recessive traits to most likely pop out in the children. I haven't had a pod take yet. I've crossed PM/BD siblings with each other, I crossed BM/PD siblings with each other, I crossed PM/BD with BM/PD and vice versa...  I'm crossing as fast as I can but they're failing just as fast as they can, too. What does surprise me is that the "Immortality" iris (Assuming it's Immortality) has two seed pods.

I couldn't get any pollen off this plant and when I did a search, I found one person that said they could never get pollen off it and they could never get it to set pods either. The top pod was pollinated with the first PM/BD that opened (You'll see it on the page I linked to). The second pod down there was pollinated with Black. I have no idea if these are balloons/air pods? Where it's swelling but there's just no seeds in there. I won't know until they open.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Loathing a garden bed

Have you ever established a garden bed and then hated it later? I am going through that right now.

The beauty that is my long amaryllis bed. I managed to weed half of the bed with the younger amaryllis seedlings. I had to climb over the little fence and stand on the wooden edges in order to bend over and work out the weeds. A huge chunk is gone. Even though I wore long sweatpants and a hoodie, four ticks still found their way to my leg.

This half of the bed is the older amaryllis and it's difficult that I can't simply stand on the wood to weed. I really shouldn't have made the bed so wide that I can't reach the other side.

It's too bad I can't simply hire a giant who can drag the bed a few feet away from the fence. The relentless vines from the woods are taking over the beds, and some have thorns so that I can't even use gloves to yank them out. If I could do this again, I would've placed the bed away from the fence so that I could control what's going on around all four edges of it.

I think what I have to do is cut out little square holes in the bed and slide in square stepping stones. That way I can step on it and yank out weeds before they can get too established.

Or, I may have to actually face the idea that come this fall, I might have to dig the whole shebang up and relocate it. I don't know. I just know that this is unacceptable how it is.