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(SPEC) 'Bartoni' aka 'Bartonii'; Iris bartoni Foster

Bartoni 1883, Foster

'Bartoni' (Sir Michael Foster, 1883) Usually considered a form of Iris Kashmiriana; In Gardeners; Chronicles New Series 19: page 275. March 1883. Foster gives the following article, and original diagnosis;

"About Christmas, 1880, I received from Colonel Newton Barton some roots of an Iris, which he had taken at Kandahar during the occupation of that city by the British. One root flowered with me in May, 1882, and proved to be not only a new, but, from a cultural point of view, a goodly Iris. The rhizome is thick and fleshy, resembling that of I. florentina. The leaves, also like those of I. florentina, are of a light yellowish-green, with well marked veins, about i\ to 2 feet long by ij to 2 inches broad, very pointed, with the tips slightly scarious. The scape, which is about 2 feet, slightly surmounting the leaves, is thick and somewhat flattened, almost entirely hidden at its lower part by four sheathing leaves, the uppermost of which is spathe-like; the base of each leaf at its junction with the stem is marked by conspicuous parallel longitudinal ridges. The last internode thus covered is followed by a node whence starts a conspicuous spathaceous bract, pale green, without strise, navicular, with a well marked keel, acuminate, scarious at the very tip only. Beyond the node the axis is continued as a peduncle about 6 inches long, bearing a terminal bud of three flowers enclosed in a spathe of two valves, and in the angle between the axis and the spathaceous bract is a lateral peduncle, about 3 inches long, bearing a bud of two flowers, also with a spathe of two valves. The spathe valves of both the terminal and lateral buds are very characteristic, being 4J inches long by 5 — I inch broad, very divergent and, like the spathaceous bract below, light green, navicular, keeled, and pointed, with the lip only scarious. They remained green and herbaceous not only during flowering but long afterwards. Within these larger spathe valves the three flowers of the terminal bud are guarded by two, and the two flowers of the lateral bud by one smaller narrow spathe valve ; and a similar spathe valve is found in the angle between the lateral peduncle and the axis. The ovary, about ij inch long, is trigonal, with a distinctly triangular section, of a yellowish-green colour, more saturated than that of the spathe valves, the sides indented with very shallow grooves bearing a slight median ridge. It is supported on a short (1 inch) pedicel. The tube of the perianth, about an inch in length, is rounded trigonal, somewhat expanded above, of a bright yellowish-green, with a stripe of deeper colour leading from the standards.

The falls, each 37 or 4 inches by i\, are tongue-shaped or spathulate, gradually narrowing to the claw, with the lamina reflexed saddlewise. The colour is a creamy. white, marked with greenish-yellow veins, which over the lamina are washed in between with yellowish-green shadings, but over the claw assume a distinct purplish-violet hue. The claw, which is of a greenish colour on its under-surface, is edged with a characteristic arrow colourless transparent membranous border. The beard, which projects a long way beyond the stigma, is pure white on the lamina, but on the claw at its lower part is tipped with orange-yellow. The hairs of the beard are short and stout.

The standards, 34 by i\, spathulate in form, with an emarginate apex, waved border, and canaliculate claw, are in the lamina of a pure white colour, except a greenish-yellow midrib and a few indistinct veins; but the claw is marked with distinct purplish-violet"

Iris {Pogonirii) Bartoni, M. Foster, sp. n. — Rhizoma carnosum. Folia ensiformia, bipcdalia. Scapus bipedalis, pluriflorus. Spatha valvis magnis, angiistis, acuminatis, viridibus, apice solum scariosis, post florem persisteiitibus. Flores ma^ni,odorem valde gratum spirantes. Ovarium triaiigiilare, miniine sulcatum, pedicellobrevissimo. Periantbii, tubus subpollicaris, segmenta
tripollicaiia, spathulata, longitudine et latitudine psene paria, laminis lacteis vet albis, uDguibus venls purpureis pictis, exteriora barba conspicua alba pilis inferioribus Aavo apiculatis. interiora barba teauissima tineari alba. Stigmata alba, ai^tis loDgis dcnticulatis. veins. Along the median line of the claw, which on its under-surface is greenish in colour, is a linear but distinct beard of white hairs. The styles are milk-white, with long denticulate crests uniting and ending in a ridge along the back of the style. The stigma or stigmatic surface is narrow and wavy, but not lobed. The anthers and filaments are both white, the latter being expanded below and flattened. The winged processes, or nectarial buttresses, as I call them, of both standards and falls are well marked. As no flower became impregnated, I can say nothing of either capsule or seeds.

In some respects the plant and flower resembles I. florentina ; indeed the flower looks not unlike a mixture of I. florentina'and flavescens. The form of the flower is, however, on the whole dilTerent, and it may be at once distinguished from I. florentina, not only by the purple veining of the claws, the more distinctly trigonal ovary, and the persistent spathe valves, but especially by the linear beard on the standards. In I. florentina there are always a few scattered hairs on the standards, but I have never seen this gathered into a distinct beard. The spathe valves alone are absolutely distinctive ; and if the inflorescence which my plant exhibited is normal, this, too, is quite different from that of florentina.

I have not succeeded in flowering I. kashmiriana, to which my plant seems also allied ; but, following Mr. Baker's description of kashmiriana, I may say that my plant is clearly distinguished by the falls not being pure white, by the crests of the style not being conspicuously large and not forming so large or decurrent a keel, by the ovary being trigonal and not oblong and six-sulcate, by the standards being elliptical or spathulate not orbicular, as well as by the characters of the spathe valves and the beard on the standards. The large, persistent, divergent spathe-valves mark it as a very distinct plant, so much so that, before the flower expanded, I began to wonder, in spite of the characters of the leaves and rhizome, whether I had not some errant member of the Onocyclus group to deal with. The inflorescence, too, is unlike that of any of the large bearded kinds ; but I do not feel sure that the inflorescence of my specimens was quite normal ; possibly under more favourable circumstances the scape will be more branched and bear more flowers. I propose to call the plant Iris Bartoni, after the gallant officer who, at Dr. Aitchison's suggestion, kindly sent me roots. May he accept the name as a little recognition of his services in having taken the trouble to make those who stay at home partakers of the floral beauties of a strange land.

Colonel Barton tells me that he found the plant in a garden in Kandahar, but the native gardener told him that it came originally from a ditch surrounding the ruins of old Kandahar, about 4 miles distant from the present city. It seems probable, therefore, though not certain, that it is a wild plant. The large white or creamy flowers with their delicate purple veinings make it a really beautiful plant ; but its great charm to my mind lies in its delicious fragrance. It is very difficult to describe odours, and I cannot define the odour of this plant more closely than to say that it seems to be a mixture of Hawthorn and Lily of the Valley.

Unfortunately I cannot say much of the robustness of its constitution. Of three roots which I received I planted two strong ones in the open, after they had completely recovered from their long journey ; the third weakly one went into a cold pit. Those in the open I nearly lost ; they were disabled by the autumnal and winter rains. The one in the cold pit flourished and flowered, apparently because it was kept dry in winter. It is perhaps worthy of notice that most of the outlying members of the Pogoniris group seem difficult to cultivate in this country, especially the large-leaved, tall, many-flowered kinds. I say outlying, because, as is well known, the chief home of the Pogoniris group is around the Mediterranean, and as we pass eastward of Asia Minor the group fades away. Of the eastern stragglers of the tall-leaved kind the form of I. germanica, with large somewhat dark flowers, figured in Bol. Reg., SiS, as I. nepalensis, is the only one which, as far as I can learn, takes kindly to our land. This appears to be a native of the Southern Himalayas, as well as of the more central parts of Asia, and I have had specimens of it direct from South Persia. I, kashmiriana from Kashmir, ssems to fare badly with us, to judge from the report which I received last summer from those who have it, when I sought for a flower.

I. Alberti, of Kegel, from East Turkestan, regarded by him and Maximowicz as closely allied to germanica, requires with me special treament to keep it alive, and I have not yet got it to flower, though I. germanica itself grows with me, as elsewhere, like a weed. I. Eulefeldi, again, also from East Turkestan, I find similarly intractable ; and if I remember rightly, even the magic gardener of Baden-Baden has met with difficulties in cultivating these two species. Of I. Bloudowi, from Turkestan and Mongolia, I am in great fear lest a plant which I have been nursing with great care for three years, means after all to die.*

The other rare bearded forms which have pushed their way beyond Turkestan to Mongolia and North China, are, I believe, as yet unknown to cultivation, and are probably still more hard to grow. I suppose these have a constitution specialised to meet the exigencies of the strange lands into which they have strayed, and are not elastic enough in nature to meet the strains to which our wayward clime exposes them. Af. Foster, Shelford, Cambs, Feb, 13,

Baker also provided a description in Curtis's Botanical Magazine, table 6869, 1886. It is today considered a synonym of Iris kashmiriana

Bartoni Bot Mag 6869.jpg

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-- Main.RPries - 2011-03-07
Topic revision: r4 - 21 Oct 2014, Harloiris
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