Iris Facts

Iris Facts
Iris is a type of flowering plant that belongs to the iris family. There are 260 to 300 species of iris, most of which originate from temperate parts of Europe and Asia. Iris can be found in semi-deserts, rocky mountains, on the grassy slopes, meadows and near the rivers. People cultivate iris for thousands of years. Beautiful, showy, multi-colored flowers of iris can be found in gardens around the world today. Iris garden in Florence (Italy) and Presby Memorial Iris Garden in New Jersey are the two largest gardens in the world dedicated to the cultivation of iris.
Interesting Iris Facts:
Iris has smooth, erect stem that can reach from 8 to 38 inches in height, depending on the cultivar. Stem can be flat or circular on the cross section.
Iris produces 3 to 10, sword-shaped leaves arranged in the form of clumps around the stem. Leaves are bluish-green colored, hairless and smooth on the edges.
Iris can produce white, yellow, orange, pink, purple, lavender, blue or brown colored flowers. Individual flowers consist of three upward oriented petals known as "standards" and three downward oriented sepals (which look like petals) known as "falls". Drooping sepals can be covered with "beard" (fuzzy appendage).
Each stem produces 9 to 12 flowering buds that grow on the short side branches. Flowers are fragrant. They last only 3 days. Iris blooms during the summer and attracts bees responsible for the pollination of flowers.
Fruit of iris is capsule which splits in three parts to release numerous seed.
Iris propagates via seed and via division of the rhizome.
Iris means "rainbow" in the Greek language. Name refers to the ability of iris to produce flowers in various colors.
All types of irises can be divided in three groups based on the size of the flowering stem: dwarf, intermediate and tall.
Depending on the color of the flowers, iris can signify wisdom (purple iris), purity (white iris), faith (blue iris) or passion (yellow iris).
Iris rhizome, also known as "orris root", is used in the industry of perfumes and deodorants.
Juice squeezed from the plant can be used to improve condition of the skin. Orris root can be used for the purification of the body because it contains substances with laxative, diuretic and emetic (which induce vomiting) properties.
Flowers of iris were symbol of faith, wisdom and courage in the ancient Egypt and they were often used to decorate scepter of the rulers.
Vincent Van Gogh, famous Dutch artist, painted two pictures depicting irises. These pictures are very famous and highly prized in the art world today.
Bearded iris is a state flower or Tennessee and official flower of the month of February.
Iris is perennial plant, which means that it can survive more than 2 years in the wild.

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