TB 48″ M B3M
From Quality Gardens catalog for 1930: “This is the best iris Mr. Yeld has ever raised, surpassing even ASIA. It is a most striking plant, a magnificent grower with exceedingly strong stems, which are widely branched. The flowers, which are very large and massive, are remarkable for the exceedingly find coloring of the falls, a rich deep very velvety blue purple, which becomes deeper and more striking at the haft. The standards are a clear lavender blue, and the beard brilliant red-gold. Dr. Ayres of Cincinnati, one of the best judges of iris we know, and himself the introducer of PERSIA and INDIAN CHIEF, went abroad last year at iris time. He saw all the iris at the big English Iris Show and also many of the finest iris gardens in England and he told us that everywhere he went he found SIR MICHAEL standing head and shoulders above all the other English Iris. We think that this and Wm.R. Dykes are the two finest iris of English origin. We are sorry that our colored illustration does not begin to do it justice. We strongly recommend this to our customers. We cannot recommend it too strongly.”
From Cayeux et LeClerc catalog for 1930: “S. light lavender blue. F. purple garnet clearer at the edges. One of the best Irises.”
From Cooley’s Garden catalog for 1936: “Unquestionably the finest blue and purple bicolor in the world. Standards are clear blue, falls deep rich mahogany, with a beard of red-gold. Regarded as the finest iris ever to come from England and a sensation wherever shown. In our own wet Northwest, in dry and sunny California, and in Nebraska, Ohio, and the colder Minnesota and New England, we found it blooming equally as well. A super iris if ever there was one.”
From Carl Salbach’s catalog for 1936: “Described by one prominent grower as “Unquestionably the finest blue bi-color in the world,” an opinion shared by most critics. Very handsome, medium tall, with large blossoms, and raised from the ranks by a rich golden beard which adds a striking note of contrast, which, at the same time, gives the flower a carrying quality seldom found in blue iris. The standards are bright clear blue, and the falls are a bright, live shade of blue violet. Much more attractive than the color cut, which is dull in comparison to the flower. Very late.”
From National Iris Gardens catalog for 1936: “The most popular selling blue and purple bi-color, particularly distinctive for its brilliant red-gold beard which gives the appearance of lighted matches in the garden. S. lavender-blue, flushed copper; F. velvety prune.”
From Oakhurst Gardens catalog for 1939: “S. clear Heliotrope, F. rich red-purple, suffused copper-brown. Tall and stately One of the world’s finest. 48 in.”
From Robert Wayman’s catalog for 1940: “I consider this one of the world’s finest Irises, of indescribable beauty. The standards are clear heliotrope and the falls rich red-purple, suffused coppery-brown, but no color description can do it justice and it has been the despair of artists who have tried to reproduce it. The color illustration on page 27, which is about one-third actual size, does not begin to show the purity of the color in the standards and the attractive coppery suffusion in the falls, and of course it does not show the velvety texture of the falls, nor the silky luster of the standards, but it gives some idea. Sold a few years ago for $50.00 for a single plant, but an extra fine stock enables me to make a very low price this season for the large strong rhizomes.” [Illustration referred to is same as that from Quality shown here, but less well reproduced.]
AM RHS 1929.
Note: According to the 1939 CL, Wayman was the first to make Sir Michael available in the USA in 1926.