■ (SPEC) Iris orientalis Miller
1731, Botanical author Miller
Iris orientalis Miller
(synonym Iris ochroleuca
). (Philip Miller
, 1731, Turkey, Greece and the Greek Islands). Section Limniris
, Series Spuriae
. Height 16-36" (40-90 cm); Leaves swordlike, 60-90 cm. long, 1-2 cm. wide, stiff, dark-green and slightly grayish. stem to 90 cm. long, 1-2 cm wide, slightly flattened, with terminal head. Spathes 2-3 flowered, opening in succession, 9-12 cm. long. Flowers 8-10 cm. Diameter. Falls with wide orbicular blade, reflexed at right angles and a narrow haft about 5 cm. long Standards erect, rounded cuneate, emarginate, about 8 cm. long Styles 5 cm. or more long. Miller in Gardener's Dictionary ed. VIII n. 9; Best known under the name Iris ochroleuca
L, See Iris ochroleuca
| Linneaus, Mantissa II p.175, 1771
| Curtis's Botanical Magazine, table 61, 1788 described orientalis using the name ochroleuca as "Of the several species of Iris cultivated in our gardens, this excels in point of height; we have taken our English name therefore from this character, and not from the term ochroleuca, which, if translated, would be too expressive of the colour of the blossoms of the Iris Pseudacorus, with which the ochroleuca has some affinity in point of size as well as colour.Notwithstanding Mr. Miller's description of his orientalis accords very badly with that of Linneaus's ochroleuca, they have been generally considered in this country as one and the same plant, distinguished by the name of Pococke's Iris, Dr. Pococke being the person who, according to Miller, in his time first introduced it from Carniola (by inadvertence spelt Carolina, in the 6th 4to edition of the Dictionary). There are grounds, however, for suspecting some error in the habitat of this plant, for had it grown spontaneously in Carniola, it is not probable that Scopoli would have omitted it in his Flora Carniolica.
Leaving its place of growth to be more accurately ascertained hereafter, we shall observe, that it appears perfectly naturalized to this country, growing luxuriantly in a moist rich soil, and increasing, like most of the genus, very fast by its roots. It flowers later than most of the others."
| Chromosome counts; 2n=39-40, Simonet, 1932. 2n-40, Lenz, 1963.
| Redoute, Les Liliaceae, table 350, 1812
| Tratt. Auswahl, no. 89, 1821
| Boissier, Fl. Orient V. 129 1884
| Baker, Journal. L.S. XVI. 141 1877
| Le Jardin, 1907, p.200
| Dykes, in The Genus Iris, 1913; Dykes considered what he called I. ocrhroleuca to be a variation of Iris spuria" Rootstock , a hard, compact rhizome. Leaves , ensiform, 2-3 ft. long, an inch or more broad, rigid, dark green, slightly glaucous. They grow with a characteristic spiral twist. Stem , 3 ft. long, slightly flattened, bearing 2-3 reduced leaves and 1-2 sessile lateral clusters besides the terminal head. Spathes , 2-3 flowered ; valves 4-6 in. long, green, lanceolate, acuminate, an inch broad. Pedicel , 1-3 in. long. Ovary , 1 in. long, 6-ribbed with 3 deep and 3 shallow grooves, with a I in. hexagonal neck. Tube , proper-as distinct from the neck of the ovary-is funnel-shaped under ½ in. long. Falls ; with narrow haft 1½-2 in. long, and broad (1½-1! in.) orbicular blade, white, flushed with yellow at the centre, deeply and widely emarginate, reflexed at a right angle and not spreading as in Guldenstadtiana and notha. Standards , rounded cuneate, 3½ in. long, deeply and widely emarginate. Styles , nearly 2 in. with parallel sides. Crests , triangular, over half an inch long. Stigma , bilobed. Filaments , pale yellow, slightly shorter than the anthers. Anthers , long, of a pale buff colour. Pollen , orange, abundant, almost transparent, of a narrow pointed oval shape ; the extine is divided down one side by a narrow fissure. Capsule , oblong, 2 in. long, more or less rostrate with three conspicuous longitudinal ridges, each of which is double ; the ripe capsule dehisces along the middle line of these ridges. Seeds , flattened or wedge-shaped with loose, white, semi-transparent, wrinkled coats (Plate XLVIII, fig.10).Observations.Miller's name of I. orientalis can hardly be retained for this Iris because it is based on some confusion. His figure is indeed exactly I. ochroleuca except for the curious transversely spreading beard. His description, moreover, contains the words corollis barbatis and, though the members of this group often bear a kind of microscopic pubescence along the centre of the haft and of the blade of the falls, yet, as has been already explained at p. 13, the processes are unicellular and quite different from the multicellular hairs of Pogoniris beards. Our suspicions are further aroused by the fact that Miller states that his plants were raised from seeds brought from Carniola by Dr Pococke, a Bishop of Ossory. As however no such Iris is known in Carniola (see Scopoli, Fl. Carniol.) nor has ever been collected there, there seems little doubt that Miller's plant is based on some confusion.The retention of the Linnaean name has the additional advantage that it allows Thunberg's name, I. orientalis, to be kept for the eastern relative of I. sibirica (see p. 23). [Editors note: Despite Dyke's argument, modern taxonomists now use the name I. orientalis]I. ochroleuca is well known in gardens and is a fine stately plant. Seedlings show considerable variation in the shape and poise of the segments and in the proportion of yellow and white in the colouring but no purple forms of it appear to be known. It is probably a native of swampy ground in western Asia Minor. Foster received plants from such a locality in the neighbourhood of Ephesus, and Balansa's specimens from west of Smyrna appear to be identical. Cultivation is easy and is that of the other members of the spuria group (see p. 58).
Iris orientalis has had the following registered cultivars
: 'Canari', 'Copa D'ora', 'Ochroleuca Double', 'Ochroleuca Ephesus', 'Ochroleuca Gigantea', 'Ochroleuca Innocence', 'Ochroleuca Queen Victoria', 'Ochroleuca Reflex', 'Ochroleuca Snowflake', 'Ochroleuca Sulphurea', 'Ochroleucha Warei', 'Rocky Mountain Park', 'Yellow Crest'.
Iris orientalis crosses
: 'Azure Dawn', 'Bronzspur', 'Carol Mckee', 'Elizabeth Teubert', 'Ellison', 'Franakins', 'Frigiya', 'Hocka Hoona', 'Huajilla'?, 'Lumiere' 'Mrs. H. R. Moore', 'Mrs. Mary Nugent', 'Mt. Whitney', 'Ochraurea', 'Peaches And Cream', 'Saugatuck', 'Shelford Giant', 'Ticehurst', 'Yellow Swallowtail'.
Distribution and Cultivation
| Distribution: Region:
| Cultivation: Full sun, .
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