The reproductive syndrome and Iris dichotoma

Iris dichotoma flowers, the Vesper Iris, formerly Pardanthopsis, open ‘religiously’ in the afternoon around 4 pm. By late evening, they are already withered. Nonetheless they are beautiful and it is exciting to watch. It makes you wonder – why the short period of flowering?

Iris dichotoma2

According with an article from the Journal of Experimental Botany: “flower opening and closure are traits of a reproductive syndrome, as it allows pollen removal/and or pollination”. Although a peculiar species, the vesper iris is not given as an example in the study.

Iris dichotoma

Iris dichotoma – first year flowering from seeds; super easy to grow

Those interested can read about the mechanism of opening and closure, carbohydrate metabolism, hormonal regulation and more here – Flower opening and closure: a review, Wouter G. van Doorn, Uulke van Meeteren.

Note on Vesper
In many Christian denominations, vespers is the name used for the evening prayer service. From Greek ‘hespera’ and Latin ‘vesper’ = evening.


8 replies
  1. mrsdaffodil
    mrsdaffodil says:

    Gorgeous and exotic!

    This is the first year my Cypella coelestis is flowering. The blossoms last half a day, if that. It’s difficult to capture a photo–you really have to be on your guard! I’ve read that they will continue blooming throughout the summer, presumably after they are more mature than my plant.

    • diversifolius
      diversifolius says:

      I wasn’t familiar with Cypella ;) thanks for a new one! – there is quite a resemblance with I. dichotoma.

    • diversifolius
      diversifolius says:

      There are quite a few buds on every stem and they open gradually, so when you look at a large clump (mine isn’t really big) there are flowers every afternoon :)

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