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Re: PHOTO:Iris sikkimensis

  • Subject: Re: PHOTO:Iris sikkimensis
  • From: HIPSource@aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 28 Feb 1999 20:22:03 EST

From: HIPSource@aol.com


This is the second time in recent memory that this Iris has been mentioned on
the list. I find this remarkable in light of the information in the current
authority, the BIS book 'A Guide to Species Irises, their Identification and
Cultivation", which says:

"Dykes grew this plant successfully for four years, but without obtaining any 
seed and presumably under the same conditions as his other plants from this 
section. [Pseudoregelia] He, very properly, described it, but it never has 
been collected again and Dykes himself thought it might be a natural hybrid. 
It certainly appeared to be self-sterile. Only further collection, or possibly
hybridization, will settle the matter." 
In the botanical description, the shape of the capsule--- and the seeds--- is
said to 
be unknown. So is the natural distribution. 

My understanding is that it has not been seen since Dykes grew it. I know that
something has been offered in commerce under this name but to my knowledge.
the provenence of that plant has not been identified nor the taxonomic
classification confirmed.

In Dykes' "The Genus Iris" we find a plate of this iris--Number 31--which does
not resemble your iris. It has slender foliage and lax standards with what
appears to be adpressed tips. Dykes' botanical description, p.134, description
notes a rhizome which is  'slender and gnarled' with remains of old leaves
splitting into fibres." He says he got the plant from Barr and the "intimation
[was] that it came from an unknown locality in Sikkim." He notes the plant had
an "obstinate rufusal to set seed" over several years when pollenated either
with its own pollen, or with pollen of either of the two species of which he
considered it a possible natural hybrid.  

This said, I would be inclined to support your surmise that what you have is
probably not I.sikkimensis.

Anner Whitehead

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