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Re: SPEC: Unknown wild iris

  • Subject: Re: [iris-talk] SPEC: Unknown wild iris
  • From: Kenneth Walker <kenww@pacbell.net>
  • Date: Thu, 09 Aug 2001 18:58:35 -0700

According to Rodney Barton's "North American Native Iris" page,
theree are 5 species of iris native to Illinois:

   brevicaulis, cristata, fulva, versicolor, virginica var. shrevei

Unless the leaves are very small, we can rule out I. cristata. Besides
it is more of a woodland iris than a wet meadow type of plant. The
others all like wet locations. If the rhisomes are greenish with distintive
brown bands, that suggests a Louisiana. Both I. brevicaulis and I. fulva
are Louisiana's, but I. fulva's flowers are either a coppery red or yellow,
while I. brevicaulis is blue. I looked at my I. virginica and I. versicolor
rhisomes, they show some banding, but it is more brown on brown.
Also they don't "travel" as much as most Louisianas. If you get
some pictures of flowers, pods,  seeds, and/or rhisomes, you might
try posting to iris-photos, but my guess based on what you've said
is I. brevicaulis.

   Ken Walker
  Concord, CA  USA
  USDA Zone 9, Sunset Zone 14

Arnold Koekkoek wrote:

> I recently was given a pot of iris that came from a field in western Illinois where, according to the giver, they grow wild all over his meadow and especially in the wetter areas, such as near a creek.  He doesn't know the name, nor do I, but I thought maybe somebody on this would know the answer.  I have not seen them bloom, though I believe the report was "blue".  The distinctive thing to me seems to be the rhizomes, which apparently like being exposed and appear to be striped.  When I first saw them lying on top of the soil, I thought I was seeing Monarch butterfly caterpillars.  Does anyone know what these are?  I'm hoping this description might ring a bell, or that one of you would just know what iris species would be growing wild in this area west of Macomb, IL, maybe 25 mi. from the Miss. River.
> Arnold
> Arnold & Carol Koekkoek
> 38 7th Street, NE
> Sioux Center, IA 51250
> e-mail  koekkoek@mtcnet.net
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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