site MastheadRoots and Blooms logo

    2013 AIS Region 4 Fall Meeting


Saturday, October 19th

Thomas Silvers
Iris Breeder
Rohrersville, MD

Topic: Reblooming Iris
& Purple Foliage Development

Thomas Silvers--


Read Tom Silvers' Article
in the AIS National Bulletin
Not Just Green

I had the pleasure to attend the AIS Region 4 Fall Meeting in South Richmond on Saturday, October 19th. In addition to seeing beautiful rebloom in full swing at J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College, I met new and old iris friends. I’ve corresponded with some attendees for many years through email and iris forums. As “icing on the cake”, I was able to present some of the fun I’ve had hybridizing after the evening’s dinner. Thanks a million to Mike Lockatell and the Region 4 affiliate members for the warm welcome.

Here’s a brief summary of my presentation.

I registered two reblooming diploid MTB irises, Cricket Song and Easy Smile in 2008. They resulted from a combination of three diploid bearded iris species (Iris cengialtii X (Iris variegata x Iris suaveolens. Mellita). My hope is MTB hybridizers will be to use these two irises to bring more rebloom into diploid MTBs.


In 2013, I had maiden bloom on the lone seedling from a cross of Lowell Baumunk’s TB Introspection X Easy Smile. It shows no sign of reblooming this year, but I hope that this sort of seedling will be a bridge to bring the rebloom genes from my diploid MTBs over into the tetraploids.

I’ve been having fun hybridizing for purple foliage characteristics. I’ve been working in parallel with both diploids and tetraploids. My best diploid lines so far are derived from Iris pallida “Kupari, Iris suaveolens var. rubromarginata and the MTB Rosemary’s Dream.

My best tetraploid lines for PBF are from a combination of TB“Honky Tonk Blues”, Iris aphylla and TB“American Sweetheart”.

I hope to see Mike and my Region 4 iris friends again for the upcoming 2014 Spring Meeting in Timonium, MD.