DixPix Photographs

     

SOUTH CORDILLERA

 
     
  Flora:  OF ORCHIDS AND IRISES  

 

in general, this page is meant to cover available photos for the botanical Order, Asparagales. Within the confines of the Southern Cordillera, this is dominantly the Iris Family, with lesser contributions from Orchids.  The Orchid Family is actually the largest for flowering plants in the world, with roughly 880 genera and 25,000 species so far.  It is, however, very much a tropical family, and only a few genera have adapted to the mountains of the south. The Iris Family, by contrast, has a mere 80 or so genera and maybe 1500 species world wide.  In garden terms they are thought of as a wet-land plants, but some members have adapted to the high mountains and to dry habitats.  As usual there is much confusion regarding nomenclature.

The general term for yellow irises in Chile is Huilmo Amarillo. This one is likely Sisyrinchium arenarium.  The photo is from near Los Vilos, Chile, and the species is found from there well to the south, and in southern Argentina. Click to see big picture (303x480 pixels; 61 KB)
A similar Huilmo Amarillo from alpine parts of the Rio Teno drainage, Chile.   Another local word for Sisyrinchiums and similar species is the derived term 'Sissi'. Click to see big picture (340x480 pixels; 56 KB)
But here in Patagonian Argentina, the plants are more often referred to as 'Marancelas'.  No idea how this grass-leaved variety might be classified. Click to see big picture (640x461 pixels; 119 KB)
Sisyrinchium graminifolium on the other hand is fairly easy to recognize, although it has been classified under at least 16 different names by different authorities.  It ranges through much of Chile and locally into Argentina. Click to see big picture (411x480 pixels; 46 KB)
Sisyrinchium macrocarpum carries an Argentine passport, spread along the eastern edge of the Andes from Catamarca to Chubut. Click to see big picture (509x480 pixels; 72 KB)
Sisyrinchium striatum is a Huilmo with a wide range, from central to southern Andes on both sides. Click to see big picture (367x480 pixels; 58 KB)
The UBC Botanical Gardens classify this as Sisyrinchium striatum, although it looks a bit different. Click to see big picture (323x480 pixels; 58 KB)
With striations on the exterior of the petals, this appears to be Sisyrinchium cuspidatum, from near the coastal town of Papudo, Chile.  It is at home from this latitude south in both Chile and Argentina. huemillo
Sisyrinchium azureum ranges through much of Chile, and also in southern Argentina where this shot was taken.  Sometimes called Sisi Azul, there are those who consider it a subspecies of S. Chilense. Click to see big picture (640x427 pixels; 73 KB)
Widely known as Sisyrinchium junceum, but more officially Olsynium junceum, this species or species complex is widespread in Chile and Argentina.  Here from south-central Chile, where the name Ñuño is often applied. Click to see big picture (640x462 pixels; 46 KB)
A long-nosed example from south-central Chile, likely Olysnium scirpoideum.
This might also be a subspecies of Olsynium junceum from southern Argentina.  Then again maybe not.   The nomenclature is a mess and I am lost between authorities. Click to see big picture (640x476 pixels; 100 KB)
From Patagonian Argentina, a Marancela which is betimes called the 'Streaked Maiden' (Olsynium biflorum) Click to see big picture (640x441 pixels; 89 KB)
An alpine Olsynium from 3000 meters altitude in the mountains southeast of Lima. alpine iris
From the Talca region (south or central Chile, depending on how big your map is) an iris called 'Maicillo" (Solenomelus pedunculatus). Click to see big picture (640x354 pixels; 96 KB)
Known as Tahay (Calydorea xiphioides), this unusual iris from west of Parral, has a range through south and central Chile. Click to see big picture (491x480 pixels; 93 KB)
Libertia chilensis from southern Chile and adjacent Argentina goes by names such as Tequel-tequel and Calle-calle.  U. Berkeley Bot. Gard. Click to see big picture (640x389 pixels; 73 KB)
And here is Libertia chilensis on its home turf, at Caleta Tortel on the coast of Patagonian Chile.
A blue mystery, I am not going to even guess at this one. Click to see big picture (640x392 pixels; 81 KB)
Azulillo (Pasithea coerulea) is the only species in its genus, but there seems little agreement as to which family it should be tossed into.  A lovely plant, and fairly widespread in Chile. Click to see big picture (640x367 pixels; 87 KB)

Conanthera bifolia is a member of the newly minted Tecophilaeaceae Family.  A cheerful little plant of central Chile, one of the local names is Pajarito del Campo.

Click to see big picture (433x480 pixels; 73 KB)
Conanthera trimaculata from south and central Chile shares the local name of the previous species.  Both are for some reason also related to widows, with names such as Flor de la Viuda or Viudita. Click to see big picture (517x480 pixels; 64 KB)
And here in the Chillan region there is also a white version of Conanthera trimaculata. Click to see big picture (640x462 pixels; 67 KB)
Montbretia is a popular garden flower which has widely naturalized in southern Chile.  It is a hybrid between two South African species of the genus Crocosmia.
On to the Orchid Family. Tulipan del Monte (mountain tulip) and Orquidea de Flor Dorado (golden flowered orchid) are two names for this alpine beauty (Chloraea alpina).  It adorns the Andes from the latitude of Santiago south, and also in southern Argentina. Click to see big picture (271x480 pixels; 72 KB)
Chloraea chrysantha covers much the same range of Chile as C. alpina, but at lower altitudes.. Click to see big picture (495x480 pixels; 107 KB)
Another view of Chloraea chrysantha near Valparaiso.  Other local names for these orchids include Gavilu and Pico de Loro (parrot's beak). Click to see big picture (319x480 pixels; 62 KB)
The Agave Family is also part of the Asparagales Order.  Centered mainly in Mexico, these plants are not part of the natural flora in the Southern Cordillera, but have been very widely planted.  Here hummingbirds attend the once-in-its-lifetime flowering of a 'century plant' in southwestern Peru. Click to see big picture (316x480 pixels; 39 KB)