Step 4 - Registration
Many hybridisers never reach the stage of registration, despite many years of producing many seedlings. Even the top hybridisers only register a tiny fraction of the many thousands of seedlings they produce each year. It is only the very best that should be registered. It does not make hybridising any less enjoyable, and you never know what the next seed pod might contain!
The process of naming a new seedling and making it commercially available is known as registration and introduction. If a hybridiser has produced a new variety, which performs well on the measures of a good iris for both plant and flower, AND that iris is an improvement on, or different to the many thousands of irises already available AND the hybridiser wants to do more than enjoy that iris in their own garden, then it should be officially registered before it is offered for sale.
Once the hybridiser has chosen a name that is not already registered, they then need to apply to the registrar to have that name registered, along with a description of the flower, the plant, and its parentage.
Worldwide registrations for all classes of irises (except bulbous types) are processed by the American Iris Society Registrar. In Australia, hybridisers should contact the Australian Associate Registrar, whose role is to act as intermediary between Australian iris hybridisers and the American Iris Society Registrar.
Once the cultivar is registered, it is offered for sale to the public, and is referred to as introduction, and formally fixes the registered name to that cultivar. Proof of introduction must be provided to the American Iris Society.
For registration enquiries, please contact Helen Reid, Associate Registrar
Ph. 03 9746 3933
What to do with your seedlings
Enjoy what you produce! However, most of us do not have the space to keep every seedling. Culling is the process of selecting seedlings worth keeping for further evaluation and destroying those that are not worthy. We recommend binning those that don't make the cut. Composting can result in plants popping up when not expected!
We encourage you to keep your unregistered seedlings for your own enjoyment rather than sharing them with friends/family/neighbours/ local charities etc. There are plenty of irises around for free that are registered irises with names (and/or that may have lost their names). These are the irises that have been tested and will bring joy to those growing them as they are reliable performers. Passing on seedlings can result in people having poor experiences with growing iris as well as frustration when in the future, someone tries to identify the name of the iris they are growing, when in fact, the iris is your un-named seedling.