| Nigel Service offers these splendid notes in The Iris Year Book 1996, p.73-74:Iris setina "was noted by Prof. I. Ricci in the '50s as being distinct from forms of I. germanica L. and was described by Prof. Colasante and named I. setina in the Giornale Botanico Italiano, vol. 123, Suppl. 1, in 1989. Colasante & Saur (in Linzer biol. Beitr. 25,2:1189(1993)) state that it may be regarded as an allopolyploid and suggest that it may have ancestrally originated through the hybridization of a dwarf species, probably I. pseudopumila Tineo and I. pallida Lam.In March, 1995, I was fortunate enough to go, in the company of one of Prof. Colasante's students, to the town of Sezze, in Latium, just south of Rome where it was still in flower at the beginning of the month at an altitude of about 385m (1,250ft.). It was an extremely wet afternoon with a chill wind, miserable if not untypical iris hunting conditions and the train stood stationary in the country for some time after a very late start. Well worth it though, for this is a very rare iris. We saw it at two of its stations and glimpsed it from the road in a third situation--in private land and inaccessible. This is near enough the full extent of the species' distribution, I believe.In common with some other species in this section, I. setina is known growing in more or less close association with human settlement, past or extant. Really it could be said to occur where I. germanica might otherwise be, though its chromosome count is 2n=40. Really though, it is not enough to say it grows where I. germanica would. The major site is flat to sloping and must cover quite a large area, though diffusely, being somewhat built-over and running, as it does, from a small, rough meadow, in patches quite a way down the hill near the road and in wasteland around ruined buildings. The second, over the valley, is now contained within the cultivated area behind a block of flats, where really it is a compliment to its tenacity that it has survived. The third, unapproachable group is , as I remember, up on steep rocks, though again close to the road.Iris setina is not a showy species, looking superficially rather like a light-weight form of I. germanica, and it is not yet in cultivation. If it does eventually become available to growers, for the species is protected and may not be gathered, it is still doubtful if it will ever have very much appeal to any but the true species enthusiast, for whom it will hold definite charms.Description: Leaves evergreen, ensiform, green-glaucous, smooth, erect or only slightly falcate, about 40 cm long X 3 cm wide. Stem not much exceeding the leaves and only occasionally over 50 cm long, usually no more than two branched with one low set stem-leaf. The lower branch is about 11-14 cm long with a narrow, green, slightly pigmented subtending bract 7-10 cm long, the upper branch is short and ±contained by its bract, single flowered from each branch. Spathe rounded, slightly inflated, valves green, somewhat stained around the margin and apex, almost always single flowered, very rarely with two." 2n=40, Colasante & Sauer, 1993.