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Re: I. virginica alive and well in Virginia

  • To: iris-l@Rt66.com
  • Subject: Re: I. virginica alive and well in Virginia
  • From: "Dustin K. Howarth" <HOWARTH@zool.umd.edu>
  • Date: Tue, 4 Jun 1996 19:51:45 +0000
  • Comments: Authenticated sender is <HOWARTH@zool.umd.edu>
  • Priority: normal

Clarence wrote:

> I. versicolor is native to Virginia, but I don't
> believe I. virginica is.  I. virginica does thrive in the Mississippi valley
> areas, and on up the Mississippi tributaries (Ohio, Missouri, etc.). 
> Clarence Mahan in "generous" Virginia who adds a P.S. If there is any
> evidence that I. virginica is native to Virginia I will gladly eat my words
> (it would not be the first time...sometimes new knowledge can be
> embarrassing...LOL).


Get your napkin...

I. virginica absolutely thrives in Virginia's coastal plain.  In fact, it is an 
S5 plant in the 1-5 ranking system of the Virginia Natural Heritage 
Program (where I work).  (The S is for state, as opposed to 
global, the 5 is for the most common plant rank in VA  (1 to 5 

We have many monitored natural areas where it occurs, but I. 
virginica is so common that we don't monitor  it specifically.  
I just saw some in bloom in a seepage swamp a few weeks back
-- truly fabulous!
I. versicolor is much rarer in VA, an S3 in our ranking system; rare 
enough to be placed on our "watchlist,"  but still not rare enough to 
"monitor" as rare.

I hope you will agree that this is a case where being incorrect is a 
good thing!

Dustin Howarth
Ashland, Va
Dustin Howarth
Zone 7a, Ashland (central) Va

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