We were saddened by the recent passing of long-time iris grower and OTIS member George Lankow. We will miss his sunny smile and cheerful attitude.
Rest in peace, George.
Thomas Johnson of Mid-America Garden is our guest speaker this month. He’s developing incredible irises that are easy to grow and a feast for the eyes. Come and see his choice seedlings and much more. You won’t be disappointed.
Thomas has come a long way, since he moved to the U.S. from his native Canada. Mid-America Garden in Brooks should be on your “must see” list every year. With his partners Paul Black and Kirk Hansen, and a lot of hard labor, Mid-America has become a beautiful botanic garden filled with superb irises, endless varieties of hostas, white peacocks, and friendly dogs. He’s not called “plantaholic” for nothing. His TB ‘Paul Black’ won the prestigious Dykes Medal. He also won “Best in Show” at our 2013 and 2014 iris shows with his TB ‘Rumor Has It’ (photo). If you want to win at an iris show, sounds like that’s one iris you ought to have in your garden.
Sticking a rhizome in the ground and watching it grow into a plant that produces stalks loaded with gorgeous irises is a transformative experience. Ask any OTIS member. We don’t spend all our time with our hands in the dirt, however. When we get away from the garden, we like to check out online resources because that’s a great way to learn from iris experts and find out about this year’s new iris introductions.
For example, our FB administrator, Susan Schouten, has shared on the OTIS FB page a selection of Keith Keppel’s FB postings about plicata patterns he’s seen in his seedlings with a photo of each example. Some commercial growers put photos of their introductions on FB, while waiting for their catalogs to be printed. Good idea. Susan has been doing this for OTIS hybridizers. Check it out at www.facebook.com.
NORTHWEST FLOWER AND GARDEN SHOW Feb. 17-21
You may want to add this huge garden show to your travel plans. It’s going to be at the WA State Convention Center in Seattle. Some Seattle area iris societies plan to exhibit there. OTIS members who volunteer at the information booth will get a free pass the day they volunteer. Contact Bill Williamson (PCIS-Seattle) firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
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We are the Oregon Trail Iris Society and we meet monthly in the Salem area. Each meeting has a new and fun topic. You don’t need to be a member to join us.