中山公園前門右面草圃綠叢鬧著紅和黃，兩種鳶尾科的花朵盛開。有紅瓣黃斑黃蕊的射干 (blackberrylily rhizome) 和乳黄花瓣橙點至焦紅斑的雙色非洲鳶尾。
this spring i came across a number of beautiful flowers from theiris family (iridaceae) before knowing their identities. it opens my world after starting to research on iris – the variety of the family and species and how it present itself in the leaves, flower and fruit.
iris has a beautiful story behind its name. iris is the goddess of rainbow in greek myth. wiki says: iris is the personification of the rainbow and messenger of the gods. she is also known as one of the goddesses of the sea and the sky. iris links the gods to humanity. she travels with the speed of wind from one end of the world to the other and into the depths of the sea and the underworld.
iris has some intriguing features. pardon me from quoting directly from wiki but do read on:
~ the iridaceae the perianth is formed of two whorls of three tepals, all similar in structure, shape, and often color. the characters that differentiate iridaceae, however, are its three stamen and an inferior ovary.
~ members of iridaceae are herbs or, in a few cases shrubs. they are almost all perennial that may be either evergreen or seasonal.
~ almost all the flower parts are in threes, starting with two equal whorls of three usually large and showy petal-like tepals, distinct or fused in a tube. there are three stamens (rarely two), and their filaments are often partly to completely fused. anthers have two pollen sacs opening toward the outside, or from their side, and usually along their length. the ovary is located below the tepals (except in isophysis) with axile (rarely parietal) placentation in three locules. there is a single style branching into three at the top. iridaceae do not present unisexual flowers, and all flowers have both a style and stamen.
~ sword-like leaves parallel to the stem and with normally undifferentiated sides are another distinctive feature.
~ the fruit is a dry capsule, usually splitting along three sides spontaneously at maturity.
鳶尾科iridaceae – 被子植物門 magnoliophyta division| 單子葉植物綱 liliopsida class | 天門冬目 asparagales order
巴西鳶尾 walking iris (neomarica) – it is called walking iris because the flowering stalks take root after bending over and making contact with the ground. thus, the iris appears to “walk” as it fills the garden with graceful foliage and flowers. the walking iris is also called the apostle plant from the belief that a neomarica will not bloom until the plant has 12 leaves. (source: planting flower bulbs) 原產于墨西哥至巴西一帶，花期約春至夏季。花從花莖頂端鞘狀苞片內開出，花有6瓣，3瓣外翻的白色苞片，基部有紅褐色斑塊，另3瓣直立內卷，為藍紫色並有白色線條。花通常上午開放，至下午3～4點就開始內卷枯萎了，但花鞘內的花開完後，會長出小苗，小苗越長越大最後降至土表，發根成苗，而小苗隔年就有開花能力。（資料來源：柴娃娃植物網）
(雙色野鳶尾) 雙色非洲鳶尾 african iris (dietes bicolor) – with its unusual flowers, attractive shape and ease of cultivation, the african iris is a versatile garden plant. this african native grows from rhizomes that produce clumps of slender, arching leaves with flat, creamy-white flowers and black markings lasting only one day. although its flowers are short lived, they are numerous; with each 2- to 4-foot-tall stalk producing a mass of buds that bloom continuously from (source: planting flower bulbs) 原產南非，地下部有根莖。革質劍形葉片細長，具明顯的中肋。春夏季開花，花莖細長，高度可達1公尺。花瓣奶油色至黃色，基部有巧克力色斑紋。花朵僅一天壽命，但是花開花謝不斷，能延續長久的觀賞期。（資料來源：台灣大百科全書）