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Irises are one of the world's most popular garden plants. That was not always so. The story of how several men and women transformed relatively unimpressive iris species into the plants with flowers of diverse forms and colors so beloved by today's gardeners has never been told until now.
This book, the first ever written on the history of garden irises, represents years of research in French, British and American primary and secondary sources. It challenges taxonomists' designation of iris germanica as the type of species for genus Iris and the generally accepted status of iris albicans. It is also the first book containing extensive information on the native iris species of Florida and the deplorable state of taxonomy of these species.
This scholarly work was written to appeal to the lay reader, as well as to the specialist. Many beautiful and original pictures of irises are included, along with pictures of some of the men and women whose stories are told.