■ (SPEC) Iris kemaonensis Wall.

1830, Botanical author Wallich

Iris kemaonensis Wallich (Nathanael Wallich, 1830, Himalayas); Section Pseudoregelia ; 2-3" (5-8 cm); Flowers lilac purple, mottled and blotched darker; Beard dense white tipped yellow;

See below:
Iris kemaonensis2.jpgIris kemaonensis3.jpgIris kemaonensis5.jpgIris-kemaonensisWalker1.jpgIris-kemaonensisWalker2.jpgIris kemaonensis KWW 1.JPGIriskemaonensisSIGNA01.jpgkamoensis01.jpgKemaoensis.JPGKemaonensis Author Clocks Creative Commons uploader Shillika.jpgKemaonensis close up Author ClocksCreative Commons uploader Shillika.jpgkemeonensis3.JPGkemeonensis4.JPGkumaonensis edited-1.jpg


Wallich Cat. 5052;
Baker, Journal of the Linnean Society 16: 144. 1877;
See SIGNA 45: p1626-28, Fall 1990.
Curtis's Botanical Magazine 113 tab. 6957, 1887
This very interesting new species was discovered by Mr. Duthie, in his recent exploration of British Garwhal, and was first cultivated by Professor Foster, and named by him after Dr. George King, Director of the Calcutta Botanic Garden. It comes about midway between I. pumila and I. tertorum, and forms a connecting link between the sub-genera Pogoniris and Evansia, in the former of which the claw of the outer segments is furnished with a beard, and in the latter with a more or less laciniated crest. Our drawing was made from a plant that flowered in the Kew collection at the end of May this present year.

Descr. Rootstock short-creeping. Leaves five or six to a rosette, three elongated, linear, erect, rather glaucous, about half a foot long at the flowering time; veins and edges hyaline. Peduncle very short. Spathes single-flowered; valves lanceolate, greenish, unequal, the inner-most one and a half or two inches long. Perianth-tube greenish, cylindrical, two or two and a half inches long; limb bright lilac ; outer segments obovate-cuneate, reflexing, an inch and a half long, dark lilac, much mottled with paler lilac, furnished with a beard down the claw composed of white filaments with a yellow glandular tip, springing from a depressed white crest; inner segments oblong-unguiculate, erect, paler lilac. Style an inch long, including the short deltoid crests, lilac in the middle, paler towards the edge. Anther whitish-lilac, as long as the filament. — J. G. Baker.
Dykes, The Genus Iris tab. 30. 130. 1913
Rootstock , a compact, gnarled rhizome, bearing a few fibrous remains of old leaves.
Leaves , very short, about 3-8 in. long at flowering time, but developing later to 18 in. by ½ in., linear, pale green, glaucous.
Stem , usually undeveloped, under 1 in. and only 2-3 in. long in the rare caulescent form.
Spathes , 1-2 flowered, valves keeled, pale green, acuminate, scarious only at the tip, loosely wrapping the base of the tube, but leaving the upper part exposed.
Pedicel , ½ in. or less.
Ovary , short, almost circular or slightly hexagonal in section.
Tube , 2-3 in. long, striped with dark purple.
Falls . The cuneate haft is white marked with thick purplish broken veins and the oblong, ovate blade is of some shade of purple, veined and mottled, rather than blotched, with a darker shade near the end of the beard, but becoming almost a uniform blue-purple at the extremity. The beard is of close-set, silky, white hairs, sometimes slightly tipped with orange or brownish-yellow.
Standards , shorter than the falls, the blade being oblong and distinctly and widely emarginate, usually of a paler shade of purple and more uniform in colour than the falls. The base, however, bears similar mottlings to those of the falls.
Styles , with a deep purple central ridge and paler sides, short.
Crests , triangular, with crenate edges, small.
Stigma , entire, with crenate edge.
Filaments , bluish.
Anthers , lavender.
Pollen , white.
Capsule , small, ¾-1 in. long, almost circular in section, tapering to a point and dehiscing below the apex.
Seeds , red-brown, pyriform, with distinct but flat creamy aril.


This Iris appears from herbarium specimens to be less abundant than I. Hookeriana in the valleys of the N.W. Himalaya and possibly to be confined to Kumaon and Garhwal. It was first collected apparently by Wallich and may be at once distinguished by the very short or entirely undeveloped stem and by the long perianth tube. The plants flower when the leaves are very short, but these eventually develop to about 18 in. in length. The capsule is short and spherical, distinctly rounder and shorter than the gradually tapering form of that of I. Hookeriana.

The nomenclature of these plants has been confused by the fact that Foster in 1887 described two forms under the names of I. Kingiana and I. Duthieii without any reference to the I. kumaonensis of Wallich, whose specimens are now at the Linnaean Society in London. His descriptions, as they were published, do not distinguish between I. Kingiana and I. Duthieii, but in his MSS. there is the following note. " Duthiei distinguished from Kingiana by beard, no sign of crest." There are sketches and also very full notes of the two plants, but they seem identical except in this single point, which is an unreliable character as is explained in the introductory notes on the Pseudoregelia section.

There does not seem to be any very great difficulty about the cultivation of this Iris in a rich well-drained soil and sunny position, where it will not be too wet in winter. Moisture must be provided in abundance during the growing season and care must be taken to prevent the destruction of the fleshy roots by wireworms which seem to be especially fond of them. Increase by division of the rootstocks is slow and seeds are apt to lie dormant for years without germinating.

Herbarium specimens of I. kumaonensis differ greatly in appearance according to the time of year at which they are collected. For instance, a plant gathered in flower will have leaves that are only a few inches in length, not reaching even to the top of the flower, while, at the end of the season, when the capsule is ripe, the narrow leaves will have attained a length of a foot or eighteen inches, cf. Duthie no. 3426 and Clarke no. 23914 A (K). Even at this stage of the growth the stem is usually only an inch or two in length, although instances occur in which it develops to as much as four inches. Plate XXX illustrates the different appearance of the plant at different stages of its growth.
Correvon 1929; Hocker 1938;
Fig. 28. Waddick & Zhao, Iris of China, 1992, illustrated in color



Kumaon Iris; Iris duthieii Fos.; Iris kingiana Baker; Iris tigridia Jacquemont; Iris kamaonensis; ----





Distribution & Cultivation

Fig. 28. Waddick & Zhao, Iris of China, 1992, illustrated in color, See SIGNA 45: p1626-28, Fall 1990.

Iris kemaonensis2.jpgIris kemaonensis3.jpgIris kemaonensis5.jpgIris-kemaonensisWalker1.jpgIris-kemaonensisWalker2.jpgIris kemaonensis KWW 1.JPGIriskemaonensisSIGNA01.jpgkamoensis01.jpgKemaoensis.JPGKemaonensis Author Clocks Creative Commons uploader Shillika.jpgKemaonensis close up Author ClocksCreative Commons uploader Shillika.jpgkemeonensis3.JPGkemeonensis4.JPGkumaonensis edited-1.jpg

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-- Main.RPries - 2009-12-03
Topic attachments
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Iris kemaonensis2.jpgjpg Iris kemaonensis2.jpg manage 2 MB 17 Oct 2019 - 07:45 TasV Kemaonensis
Iris kemaonensis3.jpgjpg Iris kemaonensis3.jpg manage 2 MB 17 Oct 2019 - 07:43 TasV Kemaonensis
Iris kemaonensis5.jpgjpg Iris kemaonensis5.jpg manage 2 MB 17 Oct 2019 - 07:44 TasV Kemaonensis
Iris-kemaonensisWalker1.jpgjpg Iris-kemaonensisWalker1.jpg manage 63 K 25 Jul 2016 - 17:42 BobPries Ken Walker photo
Iris-kemaonensisWalker2.jpgjpg Iris-kemaonensisWalker2.jpg manage 74 K 25 Jul 2016 - 17:42 BobPries Ken Walker photo
Iris_kemaonensis_KWW_1.JPGJPG Iris_kemaonensis_KWW_1.JPG manage 76 K 23 Jan 2015 - 21:22 Main.KWalker Photo by Ken Walker
IriskemaonensisSIGNA01.jpgjpg IriskemaonensisSIGNA01.jpg manage 35 K 11 Oct 2014 - 15:48 Main.TLaurin Photo by Founders of SIGNA
Kemaoensis.JPGJPG Kemaoensis.JPG manage 51 K 30 Jan 2011 - 13:25 IrisP  
Kemaonensis_Author_Clocks_Creative_Commons_uploader_Shillika.jpgjpg Kemaonensis_Author_Clocks_Creative_Commons_uploader_Shillika.jpg manage 43 K 04 Aug 2010 - 19:00 UnknownUser Permision from Creative Commons Clocks from Gharwal region
Kemaonensis_close_up_Author_ClocksCreative_Commons_uploader_Shillika.jpgjpg Kemaonensis_close_up_Author_ClocksCreative_Commons_uploader_Shillika.jpg manage 45 K 04 Aug 2010 - 19:01 UnknownUser Permision from Creative Commons Said to be common in the Gharwal region in the Himalayas
kamoensis01.jpgjpg kamoensis01.jpg manage 47 K 17 Jul 2015 - 02:48 Main.TLaurin Photo by Barry Blyth-Australia
kemeonensis3.JPGJPG kemeonensis3.JPG manage 460 K 07 May 2019 - 02:41 Main.TLaurin Photo by Carol Lankow
kemeonensis4.JPGJPG kemeonensis4.JPG manage 338 K 07 May 2019 - 02:37 Main.TLaurin Photo by Carol Lankow
kumaonensis_edited-1.jpgjpg kumaonensis_edited-1.jpg manage 54 K 03 Dec 2009 - 02:09 UnknownUser Plate from Dykes' The Genus Iris
Topic revision: r17 - 17 Oct 2019, TasV
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