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Can't you please just give me your NAME? One of the more interesting albeit controversial aspects of Historic Iris is when folks are growing an 'Unknown' aka NOID,  and want to find out what the 'real' name is. There are 'purists' who believe you can never put a name on an iris once its lost. While others believe it is worth the investigation and some can indeed be identified. Some folks will tell you your beloved iris could be a seedling, or there are 50,000+ registered iris, many of which there are no pictures so if would be almost impossible to find a name. But still, you cannot close your mind to the possibility that maybe you might be able to identify it. If you are among the curious, and willing to search for an identification, it can be a rewarding or disheartening experience, and we at HIPS are willing to help. We have put together a group articles and tools to help you, because we also love a mystery. And you should too. Click here to see Phil Edinger's excellent article on Iris Identification Click here to see Our Color charts
  • March 4, 2017
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  • Comments Off on Color White – Bitone W4
'White Bicolor, W4'  has a predominant white standard. Note the iris from the 50's have the simple designation of W4, but the iris from the 60's have the additional 'color' not 'saturation' designation after the number 4.  W4

Whole Cloth, TB, P Cook 1956/1958



Finest Hour, TB, Stevens 1955/1958



Cape Cod, TB, Knowlton, 1951/1954 Cape Cod - LM W4

Headlines, TB, Brummitt, 1953 [...]

'White Bitone'  W3. Honestly, this designation I cannot imagine what it would look like. It should be two different shades of the same color, white being in the standards, and ??darker shade of white?? in the falls. One image that I have has a W3 designation, and I believe it is a mistake.  W3


Elizabeth Noble TB, K Smith 1953/1954

'White Plicata'  W2  has a white background. Note the iris from the 50's have the simple designation of W2, but the iris from the 60's have the additional 'color' not 'saturation' designation after the number 2.  W2


Rosy Veil, TB, HE Sass 1953/1954

W2 raspberry-ribbon-bf

Raspberry Ribbon, TB, Schreiner, 1951/1951 

W2 dancers-veil

Dancer's  Veil, TB, Hutch [...]

'White Self' does not appear to have designations such as L, P, D, F. The following are all designated with W1.  W1


Cascadian, TB, Linse 1952/1952


Gay Lavinia

Gay Lavinia, TB, Schreiner 1954/1954

W1 earth-angel2-mu.jpg

Earth Angel,TB, Sexton, 1959/1960


  • January 29, 2017
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  • Comments Off on ID_Composites – a New Tool for Identification
ID_Composite Pictures How many ways can you look at the same iris at the same time? Almost a year ago, 2016, we began a pilot project which was aimed at making iris identification easier by presenting a single verified iris as a collection of many views, which you could either access via a link on its Gallery listing or see them all by visiting the ID Composite page right here. We asked a few folks to help us, as putting together these collages was tedious, and time consuming. I would like to thank a few of our members for stepping up and helping out on this initial effort. Anne Milner provided us with many Bliss iris composite shots; Dave Prichard and Mike Unser-Starhill also contributed by photographing iris that they were growing. Please take a look at our collection, and if you would like to help by photographing your verified iris in various poses, contact me the webmaster at  for more information. Now is an excellent time to get involved. Bloom season 2017 (the photo season) will be upon us very soon.  You will be helping your fellow irisarians with this unique new tool never before available - anywhere! (I think) You can see our instructions [...]
The Library garden-in-rain When you find yourself in a situation like the above, what do you do? Check out the library of course! We have all sorts of interesting information about iris for you to browse. Enjoy! 
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