BULB: Evolution of Bulbous Iris-Simonet
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- Subject: BULB: Evolution of Bulbous Iris-Simonet
- From: Henryanner <Henryanner@aol.com>
- Date: Mon, 29 Dec 1997 23:10:10 -0700 (MST)
In reference to the question of the evolution of the bulbous irises and their
relation to the rhizomatous irises I offer the following from Marc Simonet's
doctoral thesis, The Genus Iris: Cytological and Genetic Research (1932 ) as
translated from the French by Bee Warburton. Since this translation, which is
available in reprint from the Historic Iris Preservation Society, was
initially copyrighted by the Median Iris Society, I shall offer a precis,
quote verbatim in moderation, and beg their forgiveness.
Dr. Simonet observed in his General Conclusions (Part I, p.62) that the
chromosome number n=8 is the lowest such number found in the Iris and this
number characterizes two irises which may be considered the most primitive in
their sections from a cytological standpoint. These irises are Iris
winogradowii, a reticulata or bulbous iris, and Iris attica, a pogon iris. He
concludes that the presence of this number, a direct multiple of the number
four, in both of these sections suggests that the bulbous and the rhizomatous
irises are "from one common origin" but evolved into two separate and distinct
groups. To Simonet the evidence suggested that that respective development
proceeded along "parallel" lines in "the same direction" but that the bulbous
irises appear to have "stabilized in a more primitive state" than the
I have no information on whether this construct is still considered valid.
Anyone who requires information about obtaining a copy of this dissertation
may drop me a private note and I will forward necessary particulars.
Anner Whitehead, Richmond, VA
Commercial Source Chairman
Historic Iris Preservation Society, AIS
"Preserving irises, iris records, and iris artifacts for the future."
Henryanner@aol.com , HIPSource@aol.com