Friday, May 7, 2010

White Flowers - 1

A Nashville flood survivor...and sage...left an interesting comment this week:

The slower we go the more we see and when we stop we can see everything.

I like that.

The statement reminded me of some flowers I found while looking for the Cypripedium.

Dwarf crested iris (Iris cristata) is pretty common in these parts. I see patches quite often while driving here and there. Whenever I do, it is hard to resist pulling over to the side of the road and taking pictures.

Iris cristata exhibits some variety in coloring, anywhere from pale blue to violet.

I snapped a few pictures of a big patch of dwarf crested iris, and then saw something new.

At the edge was a smaller patch of white ones.

I haven't been able to learn much about them. Apparently, a white dwarf crested iris is not particularly rare. I did find one mention of albinism in Iris cristata, and don't know if that is inconsistent with the gold blazes on the sepals of the white ones I observed.

Anyhow. Either way. It was a pleasant surprise. And I would have missed it, except that I stopped.


Mountaindreamers said...

gorgeous pictures and a welcome reminder of the beauty here. As someone who lived in Nashville for 34 years, I never saw so much flooding as last week. This was made worse in the outlying areas by the expansion onto flood plains. Every spring we would see the rivers creep out onto the horse pastures and fields. Then they decided putting houses in these areas was a good idea. Certainly last week's rains were beyond the usual spring rains and a reminder of how powerless we are before nature and her whims.

Christopher C. NC said...

It is also possible that the white one is an Iris verna which is noted for the orange band on the sepals. It should also be blue to violet normally. Did you stop long enough to notice if the leaves on the white one were narrower than on the Iris cristata? Iris verna is uncrested, no fuzzy parts on the upper surface of the sepal.

Now to confuse matters, my white iris cristata does have a smaller yellow band on the sepal.

One day I would like to go on a walk with you.

GULAHIYI said...

Christopher, you might be correct suggesting Iris verna. The leaves WERE narrower, although not THAT MUCH narrower than the purple iris.

I greatly appreciate any expert advice and enjoyed your blog post on the dwarf iris.

My pursuit of taxonomy and my pursuit of photography sometimes support each and sometimes work against each other. I'm still struggling to learn how to take pictures of white or yellow flowers, without losing all the detail to overexposure. So I'm trying to manage that while also trying to get a positive ID.

But the bottom line is that there's hardly anything I enjoy more.

I'm always up for a wildflower walk, so shoot me an email sometime and we'll get out on the trail.

Jim Parker said...

Thank you for the compliment about my comment. We were barely touched by the flood but I had friends who lost everything. We had some wet things in the basement and a washing machine in need of repair. An inconvenience but given circumstances nothing to complain about. While I have lived in Nashville for 25 years I lay claim to 6 perhaps 7 generations of family in the hills of Wilkes County. Not sure of the 7th that great great whatever grandfather may not of moved south from the hills of Virginia around Independence.