Plant profile: Iris lorteti

Iris lorteti from Curtis’s Botanical Magazine, vol. 118 [ser. 3, vol. 48]: t. 7251 (1892) [M. Smith]
Iris lorteti from Curtis’s Botanical Magazine, vol. 118 [ser. 3, vol. 48]: t. 7251 (1892) [M. Smith]

 

Species: Iris lorteti

Common name: Lortet’s Iris

Threat status: Endangered

Country of origin: Southern Lebanon and Israel

This species is found in pockets of grassland on the border between Israel and Lebanon. Once collected extensively for the cut flower industry, it was sold in bunches on the side of the road, plants were also moved to grace the cemetries of the area. Nowadays it is threatened still by the flower and horticulture industry alongside over grazing and, interestingly, undergrazing as it is little able to compete with the larger, more vigorous, plant species when they aren’t removed by herbivorous mammals.

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