14 Jan Wild iris
Dietes bicolor, Dietes iridioides
Highly tolerant of poor, dry soils and grows in a wide range of conditions.
Origin: South Africa
Habit: Perennial rhizomatous clumps of erect sword-shaped leaves. The adult plant is approximately 1m wide and 1m tall.
Leaves: Leathery, sword shaped, strappy leaves 1-2cm wide to 60cm long; arranged in flat fans.
Flowers: Short-lived, iris-like flowers that are either white, yellow and mauve or yellow with brown spots produced Spring-Summer.
Fruit and Seeds: Green, three-celled capsule containing numerous hard angular seeds 1-2mm in diameter.
Roots: Rhizomatous and fibrous, will re-shoot from any rootstock left in soil.
Dispersal: Seed is spread by water, humans, contaminated soil (earthmoving equipment, car tyres etc) and garden refuse dumping.
Control: Hand pull/dig, Foliar spray.
A recent addition to weed lists in Sydney, these plants need active management in all gardens. This may be as simple as actively removing spent flower stalks prior to seed set, or as comprehensive as complete removal from gardens.