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■ (Spec) Iris tenuifolia Pall.

1773, botanical author Peter Pallas

Iris tenuifolia Pall.(Peter Pallas, 1773). Subgenus Limniris, Series Tenuifoliae. In Reise iii. 714. 66, tab. c, fig 2 1773. other references; Gardeners Chronicles 3rd ser. 59: 196 8 April 1916 with illustration; J.R.H.S. 42: 335. September 1916 Picture to right from internet

See below: WikiMedia Commons copyright Yuriy75 ----


Iris tenuifolia Pall., Reise Russ. Reich. 3: 714 (1776).
Baker in Gardeners Chronicles Ser.II vi. p. 144, 1876; Rhizome short, woody, sending out copious long, strong slender radical fibres. Tufts surrounded by dense masses of the persistent bases of old leaves 2 — 3 inches long, not splitting up into fibres. Leaves of the year sub-terete, 6—12 inches long at the flowering time. Stems very short, with a bract-like leaf just below the spathe ; two-flowered. Spathes of more than two lanceolate-acute firm valves, about 3 inches long. Ovary oblong, 1/2 inch long, nearly sessile in the spathe; filiform tube reaching a length of 3 or 4 inches; limb lilac, 1 1/2—2 inches deep ; falls oblong-spathulate, 1/2 inch broad, with a reflexlng Hmb much shorter than the claw; standards erect, oblanceolate. Stigmas an inch long, exclusive of the oblong crests. Anthers 1/2 inch long, equalling the filaments.

Spread through Siberia from the Caspian Sea to Davuria. Easily recognisable by its terete leaves, long tube, short stem, and densely Cisspitose habit of growth. It is not known in cultivation
Flora of China

26. Iris tenuifolia Pallas, Reise Russ. Reich. 3: 714. 1776.

细叶鸢尾 xi ye yuan wei

Rhizomes dark brown, knobbly, woody. Roots tough. Leaves grayish green, linear, twisted, 20--60 cm × 1.5--2 mm, midvein absent, base surrounded by reddish brown, persistent sheaths. Flowering stems not emerging above ground; spathes 3 or 4, lanceolate, 5--10 cm × 8--10 mm, 2- or 3-flowered, apex long acuminate. Flowers pale violet, 4--7 cm in diam.; pedicel slender, 3--4 mm. Perianth tube filiform, 4.5--8 cm; outer segments white tinged yellow at center, veined darker, violet at margin, spatulate, 4.5--6 × ca. 1.5 cm, papillose along midvein; inner segments erect, oblanceolate, ca. 5 cm × 5--9 mm. Stamens ca. 3 cm. Ovary cylindric, 7--12 × ca. 2 mm. Style branches ca. 4 cm × 4--5 mm. Capsule ovoid, 3.2--4.5 × 1.2--1.8 cm, apex shortly beaked. Fl. Apr--May, fr. Aug--Sep. 2 n = 14*.

Grassy slopes, fixed dunes, sandy and gravelly soil; 1300--3700 m. Gansu, Hebei, Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning, Nei Mongol, Ningxia, Qinghai, Shaanxi, Shandong, Shanxi, Xinjiang, Xizang [Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Pakistan, Russia].
Dykes in The Genus Iris, 1913;
Rootstock , a thin rhizome, not unlike that of I. ensata, usually growing in crowded tufts but occasionally sending out stolons (cf. Becker's specimen from the Volga). The root fibres are hard and wiry and grow out from the rhizome at different angles, not vertically downwards as in other Irises.
Leaves , narrow linear, rigid, acuminate, 12 in. by less than ¼ in.
Stem , usually very short but sometimes as much as 6 in. long, sheathed in reduced leaves.
Spathes , narrow, membranous, closely wrapping the long tube, 3-4 in. long, 2-flowered.
Pedicel , very short.
Ovary ,
Tube , very slender, 3-4 in. long, reaching above the top of the spathes.
Falls . The comparatively short blade is not separated by any constriction from the broad wedge shaped haft. The colour is a blue-purple.
Standards , oblanceolate, about as long as the falls.
Styles , narrow. Crests , long and narrow.
Stigma , apparently bilobed.
Filaments ,
Anthers ,
Pollen ,
Capsule , ovate or globular,
Seeds, cubical, dark-brown, about an inch long. with coarsely wrinkled coat.





not variations noted



No hybrids noted


Distribution and Cultivation

Distribution: Region:Spread through Siberia from the Caspian Sea to Davuria.


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-- Main.RPries - 2011-03-07
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
Iris_tenuifolia_Baikonur_001.jpgjpg Iris_tenuifolia_Baikonur_001.jpg manage 3 MB 27 Jun 2016 - 17:22 BobPries File from Wiki Media Commons
Iris_tenuifolia_Baikonur_002.jpgjpg Iris_tenuifolia_Baikonur_002.jpg manage 1 MB 27 Jun 2016 - 16:12 BobPries Slender-leaf iris (Iris tenuifolia) Baikonur-town (the left bank of Syr-Darya), Kazakhstan. Creative Commons Attribution. See link
TenuifoliaIn_PallasVoyages.jpgjpg TenuifoliaIn_PallasVoyages.jpg manage 308 K 27 Jun 2016 - 16:19 BobPries Tenuifolia in Pallas, Reise
tenufolia.JPGJPG tenufolia.JPG manage 88 K 23 May 2019 - 12:59 Main.TLaurin Photo scanned from the Carol Lankow slide collection
Topic revision: r10 - 29 Mar 2022, TLaurin
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