Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Iris ensata Thunb.

A rhizomatous iris with linear leaves to 1cm wide and 1-to 3 flowered clusters of white to dark purple flowers, the falls marked with yellow and the standards somewhat darker.  [RHSD, BIS].

Horticultural & Botanical History

‘Our drawing was taken in July last, at the Chelsea Botanic garden, where it was introduced by Dr. Fischer director of the Imperial Botanic garden at St. Petersburgh.  It is a hardy perennial; but although Dr. Fischer on his visit here last summer, informed us that he considered it as an undescribed species, to which he had attached the name of longispatha, we neglected to enquire of him of what part of the Russian dominions it was a native.’  [BM t.2528/1824].

History at Camden Park

Listed in all published catalogues [B.237/1843].


See also Iris sibirica L. var. orientalis.

Published Nov 02, 2009 - 04:40 PM | Last updated Jul 23, 2010 - 05:30 PM

Figured are linear leaves and pale to dark blue iris flowers.  Curtis's Botanical Magazine t.2528, 1824.

Iris ensata Thunb. | BM t.2528/1824 | BHL

Family Iridaceae
Region of origin

Temperate Asia

  • Iris haematophylla Fisch. ex Link.
  • Iris pallasii Fisch. ex Trev.
  • Iris fragrans Lindl.
  • Iris longispatha Fisch. ex Sims
  • Iris biglumis Vahl
Common Name
Name in the Camden Park Record

Iris haematophylla 

Confidence level medium