A useful collection of important dates for B R Long – his whereabouts and achievements.
Although his full name was Bertram Raymond Long it seems he was largely known as Raymond Long. Not included in this list but of note is that Long one numerous awards for exhibits at the BIS shows.
1890 – Born in County Wicklow – Ireland on the 11th February.
1894 – First interest in irises noted – Iris Ochroleuca.
1899 – Started making his first iris crosses at just 9 years of age – is quoted as having made the remark “School does certainly interfere with gardening!”.
1907 – Scholarship to Trinity college in Dublin.
1913-1915 – Spent time in Argentina possibly as a private tutor, returned to Ireland in May 1915.
1914-18 – Served in the great war, joined the 6th battalion of the royal irish regiment in 1915, rising eventually to the rank of captain. Served in the Somme and at the battle for Gincy on 9th September 1916 suffered a serious injury.
1920 – March, appointed as a HM inspector of factories and workshops for England and Wales. Married Emily Frances Dowse of Monkstown, Dublin.
1924 – Appears in the first ever BIS bulletin. Living in Millbrook, Southampton.
1926 – Living in Richmond, Surrey.
1927 – Exhibits at first ever BIS show and was awarded the Veitch memorial medal by the RHS (according to obituary) for best exhibit by an amateur. Gained a place on the BIS committee.
1930 – First iris registered “Lentha” (some places listed as Leutha). Living in Maidstone, Kent.
1931 – Won the Runciman challenge cup for exhibit of seedlings showing parentage.
1932 – First published article in BIS yearbook “Some crosses with plicata irises”. Also shown as resigning from the BIS.
1933 – Mentioned as exhibiting at the iris show as a member again but not included in members list.
1935 – Back as a member and now living in Oldham, Lancs.
1936 – Now living in Erdington, Birmingham.
1938 – Back on the BIS Executive Committee.
1939 – Won the Runciman cup for best amateur exhibit – 72 square feet consisting of 22 different irises (110 stems in total) all raised by himself. Also second article published in BIS yearbook “Bearded irises at Moorside 1934-7”.
1940 – Third article published “The behaviour of irises in 1940”.
1941 – Fourth article published “Tall bearded iris of yesterday and today”. Now living in Cwmgwyn, Swansea.
1943 – Fifth article “Hybridising Irises” published.
1944 – Awarded the Foster memorial plaque, a special award given to those who have helped advance the genus iris. Sixth article published “Anticipations”. A quiz of Long’s creation also published which included the question “What is the most uncouth name to be inflicted on an iris?”. The answer, a personal choice from Long was ‘my selection is Dougbractifor, for a place the species Grant Duffi’.
1947 – Seventh article “Some plicatas of the past decade” published.
1951 – Moved to Boxford, Suffolk (often incorrectly listed as Essex due to Colchester postcode).
1953 – Elected Vice-President of the East Anglian iris group – alongside Sir Cedric Morris who was elected as president.
1956 – Last irises registered.
1962 – Passed away 21st January.
Despite less notable events after moving to Boxford in 1951 Long hybridised over 30 irises during this time and up until at least 1960 was active with the East Anglian iris group. The one award that is surprisingly missing from all of the irises he raised is that of the Dykes medal.