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botanical name:
Iris pallida ssp. pallida
Iris pallida ssp. pallida illustration by Pierre-Joseph Redouté, public domain
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common name:  Dalmatian Iris, Sweet Iris, Orris
synonyms:  Iris pallida var. dalmatica
family:  Iridaceae
characteristics: perennial, scented/aromatic
height: 1.20m
width: 0.60m
growth rate: medium
growth habit: spiky
leaf colour: blue-green
flower colour: light blue
main season: Summer
poison symbol poisonous or irritant
medicinal symbol medicinal
aspect: full sun
conditions: dry soil, moist soil, sandy soil, coastal
preferred soil pH: neutral-alkaline
minimum temp: -18°C
USDA zone: 5 to 8
description:
Rhizomatous bearded species with sword-shaped, blue-green leaves up to 60 cm long and papery, silvery bracts. Branching stems carry large, scented soft pale blue to lavender-violet flowers with yellow beards in late spring and early summer.

cultivation:
Well drained, fertile, neutral to quite alkaline soils in full sun. Grows well on rocky soils.

propagation:
From seed or by division

usage:
One of the sources of Orris root, from which an essential oil is extracted that is used in perfumery. Was also once used medicinally. It is an alternative to Iris 'Florentina'.

other notes:
From Croatia and the Adriatic coast. Widely naturalised elsewhere.

The species is relatively unusual in garden cultivation, compared to the variegated form.

RHS AGM

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