D. iridioides has white flowers marked with yellow and violet, with six free tepals that are not joined into a tube at their bases. These flowers last only one day. The seedpods of the plant often bend the stalks down to the ground where they have a better chance of propagating a new generation of plants.
The very similar Dietes grandiflora (Large Wild Iris) is a larger plant, which can be distinguished by larger flowers which have dark spots at the base of the outer tepals, and last for three days.
These plants were formerly placed in the genus Moraea, but were reclassified because they are rhizomatous. Some references mention the species Dietes vegeta or D. vegeta variegata, springing from some confusion with Moraea vegata (which grows from a corm, not a rhizome). The name D. vegeta is commonly misapplied to both D. iridioides and D. grandiflora.
- Dietes iridioides photo
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