#419 Northern Blue Flag (Iris versicolor)

28 April 2021

A species of Iris native to North America, in the Eastern United States and Eastern Canada. It is common in sedge meadows, marshes, and along streambanks and shores. A flowering herbaceous perennial plant, growing 10–80 cm (4–31 in) high. It tends to form large clumps from thick, creeping rhizomes. The unwinged, erect stems generally have basal leaves that are more than 1 cm (1⁄2 in) wide. Leaves are folded on the midribs so that they form an overlapping flat fan. The well developed blue flower has 6 petals and sepals spread out nearly flat and have two forms. The longer sepals are hairless and have a greenish-yellow blotch at their base. The inferior ovary is bluntly angled. Flowers are usually light to deep blue (purple and violet are not uncommon) and bloom during May to July. Fruit is a 3-celled, bluntly angled capsule. The large seeds can be observed floating in fall.

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