From Kazakhstan Encyclopedia
Template:Italic titleTemplate:Taxobox Iris ludwigii, with the common name Ludwig Iris, is a species in the genus Iris. It is also in the subgenus of Iris subg. Limniris and in series Spuriae. It is a bulbous perennial plant with violet-blue flowers. It is native to the Altai Mountains in Central Asia, where Russia, China, Mongolia, and Kazakhstan meet. It is cultivated as an ornamental plant in temperate regions.
It has flowers that are Template:Convert in diameter, that are violet-blue. It has 2 pairs of petals, 3 large sepals (outer petals), known as the 'falls' and 3 inner, smaller petals (or tepals, known as the 'standards'. The falls are lanceolate, with white marks and violet-blue veining. In the centre of the falls is covered with short unicellular hairs, (looking similar to a yellow beard). The standards are erect, narrow and oblong.
After the iris has flowered, it produces a seed capsule (not described) between August and September.
In 2003, a study was carried out on the chromosome sequencing of various Irises from the Siberian region of central Asia. They sequenced the rbcL gene from some Siberian Iris species belonging to different subgenera including, Iris halophila, Iris ludwigi, Iris uniflora, Iris pseudacorus, Iris glaucescens, Iris tigridia, and Iris laevigata. Their results supported Brian Mathew’s classification from 1989. That Iris halophila and Iris ludwigii form a cluster.
It was later published in Mélanges Biol. Bull. Phys.-Math. Acad. Imp. Sci. Saint-Pétersbourg Vol.10 page721 in 1880 (Diagn. pl. nov. asiat.).
In his book (Iris,1913) William Rickatson Dykes was once thought Iris ludwigii to a form of Iris humilis with stoloniferous rhizomes, the Academy of Imperial Science, Saint-Pétersburg did not agree with this. It was later treated as a separate species by Brian Mathew. Georgi Rodionenko had proposed Series Ludwigia for this species. But after chromosomal studies were carried out it was then placed in Series Spuriae.
It was mentioned in 'Vascular Plants of Russia and Adjacent States (the Former USSR)'.
Distribution and habitat
It is listed with Iris bloudowii, Iris psammocola, Iris ruthenica, Iris sibirica, Iris tenuifolia and Iris tigridia as being found in the Altai-Sayan region (where Russia, China, Mongolia and Kazakhstan come together).
It is at risk due to the effects of cattle grazing, ploughing and other farming methods.
In April 2005, a Working draft of Species Action Plan for Iris ludwigii was created for the at risk plants on the Altai Mountains.
It is mentioned as one of the 17 species of plants are included in the 'Red Book of Kazakhstan', and they are: Steppe peony (Paeonia hybrida), Spring asphodel, (Adonis vernalis), Pink rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea), Altai rhubarb (Rheum altaicum), Altai daphne (Daphne altaica), Snow (Macropodium nivale), Siberian adder's-tongue (Erythronium sibiricum), Maral root (Rhaponticum carthamoides), Vereschagin (Limnas veresczaginii), Heteropetals tulip (Tulipa heteropetala), Small-fruit cranberry (Oxycoccus microcarpus), (Cymbaria dahyrica), Altai anthrax (Sibiraea altaiensis), Stemless (Leiospora excapa), Altai gimnospermium (Gimnospermium altaicum) and Fir club moss (Lycopodium selago). 5 species of plant were put into the 'Red Book of Russian Federation', they are Steppe peony (Paeonia hybrida), Altai rhubarb (Rheum altaicum), Altai daphne (Daphne altaica), Ludwig iris (Iris ludwigii) and Siberian adder's-tongue (Erythronium sibiricum).
It is hardy enough to grow and be cultivated in the botanical gardens of Barnaul, Novosibirsk and Chita, Zabaykalsky Kra, in Russia. It was trialled at The Botanical Garden of St. Petersburg in 1971. It bloomed three times but then died after flowering.
- Komarov, V. L. et al., eds. 1934–1964. Flora SSSR.
- Mathew, B. 1981. The Iris. 113.
- Rare and Endangered Plants of Siberia, 1980
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