Corner Iris Picture

Ben Herman

When I first started on this hybridizing game I just thought it would be neat to grow my own plants from seed and, well who knows what might happen. But more recently, about 3-4 years ago, I realized that I could never grow enough seedlings with random crosses to come up with something really good. So, I decided to concentrate on something I liked, and just play with that.

My goal is not, nor ever will be to commercially hybridize, but just to see if I can come up with something worthwhile. Having wandered through the Schreiner seedling fields, I became enamored with the new Lightshine-Starship Enterprise dark rimmed pattern, and also with the many fine hybrids they were getting with this pattern from Conjuration. So, I am now trying to limit my crosses to this pattern and see what I can get. Some of the first ones (the Conjuration x CC121-1 cross) bloomed this year (2001). One is a space ager (from the Conjuration side) but the rimmed pattern is not pronounced.

I also play around with Arilbreds and Louisiana's. My winning seedling this year (2001) was a cross of Zerzura X Sheik. Sheik has that fine netted pattern which I think helps make Arilbreds so distinctive, but it must be recessive because none of the seedlings showed it. I also have about 15 Louisian seedlings that bloomed for the first time this year. I got some beautiful colors but I wasn't thrilled with the form but I'll give them another year. I have several Louisiana crosses I made this year, and 5 new Arilbred crosses that have taken. My biggest fear is that all crosses will take. I certainly won't have room to grow them all.

Ben Herman

To see Ben's seedling pictures click here.

To contact Ben about his seedlings, e-mail him at