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Re: CULT: I.stylosa


The following is extracted from Bill Shear's "The Gardener's Iris Book"
(pp.144-5), where he identifies this iris as I. unguicularis, which is
apparently the current preferred synonym for I. stylosa:

I. unguicularis is a beardless iris species native to the Mediterranean
region. It blooms any time between October and March, which is why it is
called the "Winter Iris". It is a low growing plant with 1 foot long leaves
springing from small, gnarled rhizomes. The flowers are carried singly on
long tubes a few inches tall (the flowers are in fact stemless), and thus
tend to bloom down in the foliage. The color range is from pure white
(rare) to lavender-blue and purple. Most varieties are very fragrant.

To grow I. unguicularis out-of-doors, select a warm sunny spot in the rock
garden or near a south-facing foundation wall that will warm the soil and
air on sunny winter days. Keep things on the dry side during the summer,
but make sure of abundant moisture in the spring. 

The Winter Iris responds well to container culture. The soil should be
gritty and well drained, but need not be highly fertile. So long as the
soil in the pot does not freeze the plants should be fine. Bill Shear (in
south central Virginia) keeps his potted plants in an unheated garage and
checks for blooms in late January, when he brings the pots into the house
to enjoy the blooms and fragrance.

Jeff Walters in northern Utah  (USDA Zone 4/5, Sunset Zone 2, AHS Zone 7)

> From: Doris Elevier <doris934@htg.net>
> Does i.stylosa come in purple and white?
> Thanks!

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