Douglas Iris

From ArticleWorld


The Douglas Iris, also called Iris douglasiana, is a wildflower native to the costal regions of southern Oregon and northern and central California. It is most commonly found in grasslands and meadows near the coast. This plant is considered a noxious weed when found in pastures, this is because it grows in clumps that prohibits other vegetation. The leaves of this plant are not eaten by cattle, as they are unpalatable and bitter. This plant may also be found under references of Iris beecheyana as well as Iris watsoniana, although Iris douglasiana is it’s proper Latin name.

Habitat

The Douglas Iris grows well in damp soil with good drainage. It is most commonly found in terrain that does not exceed 100 meters, however it is found, on rare occasions, at elevations up to 1000 meters. The plant prefers grassy plains near the coast, where ocean breezes keep the air and the ground moist.

Appearance

This plant is a common beardless Iris that is a subgenus of the Limniris family of Californicae. The rhizome that this iris grows from is usually less than one centimeter in diameter. The leaves of this plant are very similar to other irises, generally about 2 cm wide and colored dark green sometimes with a bluish tint. The flowers of this plant are typically purple with a blue tint at the base. Some color variations do occur resulting in flowers that are yellow or even white. The height of this plant ranges from 15 to 80 cm tall and each stem will typically have 2 or 3 blooms on it. This plant hybridizes naturally with Iris innominata.