Stinking Iris (Iris foetidissima)

This plant is a double beauty. Not only does it have the most beautiful blue/grey flowers in summer but it produces three large seed pods which split in autumn to reveal these fantastic orange/red berries in a striking 'tripod' arrangement if you see what I mean!

I have never sought to smell this plant, having been partly put off by its name and partly because it is not something I do, smelling flowers is not a 'man thing' I guess, however, having read about this now I might give it a go as, if you crush it, it gives off a smell of fresh meat which gives it its local name of the Roast Beef plant; now that does sound more tempting!

The Stinking Iris is common over much of Dorset, especially on sea cliffs, in damp woodlands and in hedgerows. It has a preference for chalky soil and can occur in many other situations down here as well.

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