AUBURN – The Maine Iris Society held its 43rd annual Iris Show at the Auburn Middle School recently. The show was judged by American Iris Society judges who presented show participants with many awards in the Horticultural Division. The judges made their selections from 299 iris stalks.

Russ and Joan Moors of Auburn won Best of Show with the tall bearded iris stalk, Afternoon Delight. First runner-up and Best in Youth Division went to the tall bearded iris, Dynamite, exhibited by Jolene Best of North Berwick. Second runner-up was won by Color Carnival, an historic tall bearded iris displayed by Lee and Sharon Harvie of Scarborough.

Bethany Young of Newburgh was awarded the third runner-up position with her Siberian iris stalk, Pleasures of May. She also won the honorary Currier McEwen Award for the Best Siberian of Show with that same iris.

Fourth runner-up was a tall bearded iris, Tiger Honey, exhibited by Paul Dostie of Greene. The Moors finished as fifth runner-up with their tall bearded iris, Milestone.

The Best Seedling category, representing an iris hybridized directly by the exhibitor or grown from seed by the exhibitor that came from another hybridizer, was awarded to Ted White of Minot for his tall bearded Iris seedling. Dirigo Amber Beauty.

Dostie was awarded the American Iris Society’s silver medal for the most blue ribbons in the Horticultural Division. The Whites received the second most blue ribbons and was awarded the bronze medal.

In the Artistic Division, with this year’s theme of “Bel Canto … Beautiful Music,” the iris show was presented with 23 arrangements, which were reviewed by accredited judges from the National Council of State Garden Clubs.

Peter Young of Buckfield won Best Design of Show with his arrangement in the class, “Debussey – Claire de Lune.” He was awarded the Alice Yates Award for his arrangement. Nancy McNeill of Portland won the Artistic Sweepstakes for the most blue ribbon arrangements.

Marie Austin of Springvale won the Youth Best Design for bar arrangement in the class, “Beethoven – Symphony No. 5.”

The show featured a People’s Choice Division, which gave the public an opportunity to vote for their favorite iris and hybrid peony. Dostie won first place in the favorite iris voting with 31 first-place votes for the tall bearded iris, Sugar Magnolia. The tall bearded iris stalk, Sultry Mood, won second place with 29 votes. It was displayed by Beth DeHaas of Whitefield. Each winner will receive a new tall bearded iris rhizome as their award.

Dostie won first in the favorite peony voting with 94 votes for the peony, Red Charm. The white tree peony exhibited by Peter Young won second with 22 votes. Each winner will receive a new peony as an award.

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