Mount Gilboa Iris

Iris haynei, first identified as a distinct species in 1870s, grows only at Gilboa Mountain in Israel. This is the mountain famously cursed by King David after King Saul's three sons were slain in battle with the Philistines at its slopes, and King Saul himself fell on his sword. The curse was that no rain nor dew shall ever fall on the accursed hills, but after 3 millenia it must have worn thin, because today Gilboa is awash in flowers in spring.

The most famous of the local wildflowers is the endemic Iris (Irus ha-Gilboa), which serves as a powerful symbol of Israeli Nature conservancy movement. As recently as in 2006, the government plan to develop a subdivision on the mountain fell through because of this Iris.

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Anya Jingle

Anya Jingle - Apr 17, 2008 1:19 am - Voted 10/10

Great photo!

Such a beauty!

Dmitry Pruss

Dmitry Pruss - Apr 17, 2008 10:11 am - Hasn't voted

Re: Great photo!

Thanks Anya, it's an honor to get this mark from the Queen of Wildlife Photography :) I wish I could have some background with this Iris, maybe distant snow of Hermon or glistening ponds of Izreyel Valley ... but we visited on a day with fierce March Hamsin desert winds, and all the views were choked by dusty air.

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