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Blue Flag Iris (Fleur-de-luce) (versicolor)

Beautiful lily - dwelling by still river,
Or solitary mere,
Or where the sluggish meadow brook delivers
Its waters to the weir.

The wind blows, and uplifts thy dropping banner,
And around thee throng and run
The rushes, the green yeoman of thy manor -
The outlaws of the sun.

O fleur-de-luce, bloom on, and let the river
Linger to kiss thy feet;
O flower of song, bloom on, and make forever
The world more fair and sweet.
-- Longfellow.

Standing two to three feet tall, the blue flag iris is one of our most elegant wildflowers. It is unmistakable with its sword like leaves and its showy violet flower with its "erect petals and broad, heavily veined, down curved sepals." The blue flag iris will be found where it is wet. Apparently, the blue flag along the Atlantic coast is a different variety; though hard to distinguish, it is smaller with narrower and more grass like leaves. The Blue Flag Iris is considered poisonous.

Blue Flag Iris

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Peter Landry

2011