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Savannah Iris Iris tridentata

Previously known as:

  • Iris falconeriana
Phonetic Spelling
EYE-ris try-den-TAY-ta
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Savannah iris is a perennial bulb in the  Iridaceae (iris) family native to just 5 states in the southeastern U.S.A. with showy blue-purple flowers.  In North Carolina, it grows in shady swamps and wetlands in the coastal plain.  The genus name Iris is named after the Greek Goddess of rainbows.  The species name tridentata is Latin for "three teeth".

The fragrant showy purple flowers appear from May to June. and it can form colonies from spreading rhizomes.

This plant is native to boggy soils but will grow in drier conditions. However, if dry for too long it doesn't bloom well. For best performance, give this plant moist to wet conditions in sandy soils in partial sun to light shade. It will also tolerate growing in a container with an inch or so of soil over the bulb.  Savannah iris is resistant to browsing by deer.

Grow in a water, rain, or bog garden or to frame a riparian area.  

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  No serious problems.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#hummingbirds#rain garden#purple flowers#native perennials#blue flowers#spring flowers#riparian#NC native#food source fall#Coastal OBL#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#native bulb#Piedmont Mountains OBL#wet soils tolerant#mammals#butterfly friendly#problem for cats#problem for dogs#problem for horses#Audubon#boggy sites
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#hummingbirds#rain garden#purple flowers#native perennials#blue flowers#spring flowers#riparian#NC native#food source fall#Coastal OBL#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#native bulb#Piedmont Mountains OBL#wet soils tolerant#mammals#butterfly friendly#problem for cats#problem for dogs#problem for horses#Audubon#boggy sites
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Iris
    Species:
    tridentata
    Family:
    Iridaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Bulb
    Perennial
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Southeastern U.S.A. from southeastern NC to northern FL
    Distribution:
    NC, SC, GA, FL, TN
    Wildlife Value:
    Attracts hummingbirds, butterflies, and mammals.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 1 ft. 0 in. - 1 ft. 8 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Bulb
    Native Plant
    Perennial
    Poisonous
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Sand
    Soil Drainage:
    Occasionally Wet
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    7b, 7a, 8b, 8a, 9b, 9a, 10b, 10a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
    Fruit Description:
    Round to oblong seed capsule August to October
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Blue
    Purple/Lavender
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Petals:
    2-3 rays/petals
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    Fragrant blue-purple wide sepals spread and then arch down. They have dark purple veins and a white to yellow signals. Petals are much smaller only 1-2 cm in threes and resemble teeth. Blooms appear singly from May to June on 2-foot green stalks that rise above the leaves.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Sheath
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Strap-like leaves are bright green, 12-18 inches long and .5 to 1.5 inches wide, basal and upright. Margins are entire and occasionally tinged with red-brown. They encircle the stem.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Cross Section:
    Round
    Stem Form:
    Straight
    Stem Description:
    Green round stem up to 2 feet tall sometime branched but usualy holding only one flower.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Coastal
    Container
    Pond
    Riparian
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Native Garden
    Rain Garden
    Water Garden
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Hummingbirds
    Small Mammals
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Wet Soil
    Problems:
    Poisonous to Humans
    Problem for Cats
    Problem for Dogs
    Problem for Horses
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    Salivation, vomiting, drooling, lethargy, diarrhea. Highest concentration in rhizomes
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Pentacylic terpenoids (zeorin, missourin and missouriensin)
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No