|Sweet Iris (Iris pallida)|
Iris pallida (Dalmatian iris or sweet iris) is a hardy flowering perennial plant of the genus Iris, family Iridaceae. It is native to the Dalmatian coast (Croatia) but widely naturalised elsewhere. It is a member of the subgenus iris, meaning that it is a bearded iris, and grows from a rhizome.
This iris prefers rocky places in the mediterranean and submediterranean zone and reaches sometimes montane regions at its southern range in Montenegro. It grows to a stem height of 50–80 cm (20–31 in). The leaves are bluish-green in color, and sword-shaped, 40–50 cm (16–20 in) in length, and 2.5–3 cm (0.98–1.18 in) in width. The inflorescence, produced in May/June, is fan-shaped and contains two or three flowers which are usually pale purplish to whitish.
Three subspecies of Iris pallida s.l. are recognised by some authors as species: Iris pallida subsp. cengialti, (with deep purplish flowers) from Slovenia and adjacent Italy, Iris pallida ssp.illyrica, from the North Dalmatian coast, and Iris pallida ssp. pseudopallida from the South Dalmatian coast. The newly described Orjen Iris (I. orjenii) has white flowers.
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