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ORNAMENTAL PLANTS OF HORTICULTURE VALUE

Selection of perennials

Gladiolus L.
Corn flag, gladiolus, sword lily
Iridaceae

About 180-300 species, depending on classification, mostly in Africa. 10 species are mentioned in the Checklist of the flora of the FSU. Some of them are known in horticulture and are of wide distribution. Thus G. italicus Mill. occurs in the Crimea, the Caucasus, the southern regions of Central Asia (Pamiro Alay, Badkhiz, Kopet-Dag) and also in the Mediterranean, Asia Minor and Iran. This species is known in cultivation under the name G. segetum Ker-Gawl. and also as G. turkmenorum Czerniak. Two species are of European distribution: G. imbricatus L. and G. palustris Gaudin; both grow in the European part of the FSU, in its western regions. Most species occur in the Caucasus (7), and some are endemics (e.g. G. caucasicus Herb., G. dzhavakheticus Eristavi). All species are of horticultural interest, being very attractive and of importance for hybridization.

G. atroviolaceus Boiss.

Caucasus (southern Transcaucasus), Central Asia (Kopet-Dag), Middle East, Asia Minor and northern Iran. Dry sunny steppe slopes, rocky and gravelly soil up to 2,000 m.

Plant 45-75 cm. Spike with 2-8 flowers. Leaves 3, 4-8 cm wide, as long as, or even longer than, the spike. Flowers dark lilac, 3.5-4.0 cm long. Lateral segments of perianth longer than the others. Anthers as long as filaments. V - March to September in the wild. Fl - end of May. Fr - July. Pr - by seed (sown immediately) and by cormlets. Requires a sunny position; tolerant of dry soil. Z 6 (5). New.

G. caucasicus Herb.

Caucasus (eastern regions Kartli, Trialeti). On grassy slopes and among shrubs, in sunny places on shallow soil.

Spike one-sided 70-100 cm high, 5-8 flowered. Leaves 2-3, 2 cm wide, shorter than the spike. Flowers campanulate, violet-lilac. Perianth segments gradually narrowed towards the base, the three lower segments longer than the upper ones. Anthers obovate, narrowed to the base. V - April to October. Fl - May-June. Fr - July. Z 6 (5). New.

The following are also of horticultural interest:
G. dzhavakheticus Eristavi. Caucasus (Georgia, Dzavakhetia). Subalpine meadows. Distinguished from the other species by wide, campanulate erect, violet flowers. All perianth segments equal, lower ones unspotted. Anthers wide. V -mid spring to late autumn. Fl - July-August. Fr. - October. Z 6 (5). New.
G. kotschyanus Boiss. Transcaucasus, Anatolia, Iraq and western Iran. Boggy, subalpine meadows. Spike 30-65 cm. Leaves 2, broadly linear, 7-9 mm wide, with 5-6 ribs. Inflorescence short, with 3-4 lilac-violet flowers. V -mid spring to late autumn. Fl - July-August. Fr. - October. Z 6 (5). New.
G. tenuis Bieb. The Greater Caucasus. Subalpine zone, boggy meadows. Spike up to 60 cm, leaves much shorter. Flowers 3.0-3.5 cm long, purple-violet. Lower perianth segment light blue, sometimes white with dark violet veins. P - by cormlets that form regularly around the old corm. V -mid spring to late autumn. Fl - July. Fr - September. Z 6 (5). New.
G. halophilus Boiss. et Heldr. The Caucasus (Megri, rare), central Anatolia, northeastern Iraq and western Iran. On slopes with saline soil. Leaves 3 in number 3-4 cm wide. Flowers small, 2.5-3.0 cm long, light pink. V - April to September. Fl - June. Fr - August. Z 6 (5). New.

SELECTION OF PERENNIALS
 
 
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