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Blue Flag Iris
Iris versicolor

Native, perennial emergent herb that forms colonies and reaches a height of 2 1/2'. Used in the shoreline zones of wet meadows and vegetated swales. It is recommended for restorations of meadows, swamps, shorelines, open bogs and pools. It is a beautiful, decorative plant that is well suited for rain gardens and other landscape design. It will not flower unless it is in full to partial sun. Many cultivars exist.

USDA symbol: IRVE2

General Information

Plant TypeForb
Height3 feet
Light ExposureSun, Part Sun
Soil MoistureMedium
Bloom ColorPurple
Blue Flag Iris (Blue Flag Iris<div><em class="small">Iris versicolor</em></div>)
Photo credit: Light Dark Landscape (Click to enlarge)


Flooding / Inundation ToleranceVery High
General Resilience9
Salt ToleranceLow

Pollinator Value: Very High

Bloom MonthsJune to July
Larval Host ofMoths
Specific Pollinators HostedMacronoctua onusta
Pollinator BenefitInsect Pollinated, Provides Nectar, Supports Specialists

Project Planning

Project TypeBoulevard, Erosion Control, Rain Garden, Restoration, Sandy or Engineered Soils, Shoreline Buffer
Coefficient of Conservatism5
Herbivore SensitivityMedium
Rate of SpreadSlow
Soil StabilizationShallow
Vegetative ReproductionClonal


CountyAitkin, Anoka, Becker, Beltrami, Benton, Blue Earth, Carlton, Cass, Clearwater, Cook, Cottonwood, Crow Wing, Dakota, Dodge, Douglas, Hennepin, Hubbard, Isanti, Itasca, Kandiyohi, Kittson, Koochiching, Lake, Lake of the Woods, Marshall, Martin, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Nicollet, Olmsted, Otter Tail, Pennington, Pine, Polk, Ramsey, Renville, Rice, Sherburne, Sibley, St. Louis, Stearns, Todd, Wadena, Washington, Wright
EcoregionDriftless Area, Lake Agassiz Plain, North Central Hardwood Forests, Northern Glaciated Plains, Northern Lakes and Forests, Northern Minnesota Wetlands, Western Cornbelt Plains
Approximate Eco ProvinceEastern Broadleaf Forest, Laurentian Mixed Forest, Prairie Parkland, Tallgrass Aspen Parklands