Iris virginica L.
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.
Species Description - Plants softer than no. 9 [Iris versicolor L.]; lvs broadly linear to broadly ensiform, erect or arching; rhizomes thick, creeping, often forming extensive colonies; stem to 1 m; fls short- pediceled, 6–8 cm wide, lavender or light violet to blue-violet or purple, often dark-veined, rarely red- purple or white; sep spreading-recurved, with a bright yellow hairy blotch at the base of the blade; pet somewhat shorter than the sep; ovary 1.8–3.8 cm at anthesis; fr ovoid to ellipsoid-ovate, 4–7 cm, obtusely 3-angled, the valves strongly reflexed after dehiscence; seeds with a shallowly and irregularly pitted surface; 2n mostly = 70–72. Swamps, marshes, meadows, and ditches; coastal plain from Md. to Tex., and inland to Ont., Minn., and Okla. May–July. Var. virginica, mainly on the coastal plain, is up to 6 dm, unbranched or with a few very short branches; its frs are 4–7 cm and nearly as thick. (I. caroliniana; I. georgiana) Var. shrevei (Small) E. S. Anderson, the inland phase, is up to 1 m and more branched, usually with 1 or 2 widely spreading branches; its frs are 7–11 cm, half as thick, and the fls avg darker in shade than var. virginica. (I. shrevei)
southern blue flag