Oncocyclus irises comprise a unique group of flowers that are now starting to bloom in the Botanical Garden. This group includes irises such as Iris atropurpurea, Iris mariae and Iris lortetii – which are characterized by exceptionally large flowers.

Oncocyclus irises are used as a model system, in the lab of Dr Yuval Sapir, Director of the TAU Botanical Garden, to study the first steps of speciation. The study seeks to determine whether pollen is transferred between different species of irises, and what are the mechanisms that may influence speciation. The experiments take place in the flowerbeds, in the 'Temple of Irises' (special net house), and in the research grounds of the Botanical Garden. Further synthesis and analysis are performed in the Botanical Garden's molecular lab.

You can enjoy the irises’ magnificent blossom in the following locations: a terrace to the left of the main gate; in the coastal dune vegetation plot; and from a distance in the beautiful 'Temple of Irises' (located in the research grounds opposite the entrance to the tropical house).

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