Dionysia iranshahrii

When we went to the Kuh-e Pashmaku mountains near the town of Semirom we hoped to meet well-known Harry Jans and Chris Grey-Wilson and 2 other guys. They were on a plant hunting trip too and had planned to be in Semirom on the 28th and 29th of April. Its possible to drive all the way up the mountain, but this time the track was very muddy and slippery. We stayed for the night on the plateau, which gave the impression of being in a huge volcano crater. At an altitude of 2800m temperatures were low, some 8 degrees C. Next morning skies were clear, and on this 28th April 2003 we found the first plants of Dionysia iranshahrii in full flower, growing at approx. 2850m on the east and south east sides of vertical cliffs. The rest of that day we waited for Harry Jans and his group, but on this day nobody showed up… In the morning of the next day I made another walk along the ridges of the beautiful Kuh-e Pashmaku mountain, and again found many flowering Dionysia iranshahrii plants together with some Dionysia revoluta. Dionysia iranshahrii was discovered in 1974, and introduced in cultivation by the 1998 SLIZE expedition.

Botanical Description
Dionysia iranshahrii
Forming dense, very hairy cushions which are usually greyish green although some clones are bright, almost mossy green. Leaves narrow-oblong to lanceolate-elliptic, 2-2.5mm long, 0.5mm wide, hairy on both surfaces, being one of the major distinguishing features from D. bryoides. Corolla violet, 5-6mm diameter on 11mm tube, divided into obovate, very slightly emarginate lobes. First discovered in 1974 by M. Iranshahr but only introduced into cultivation in 1998. All collections are from Kuh-e Pashmaku in Bakhtiari Province, Iran where it grows between 2500-3100m on limestone cliffs. It has proven to be one of the more difficult species to grow beyond 10cm in diameter. There are hybrids, both as a seed and pollen parent but these are not widely distributed. Collections in cultivation are SLIZE213, DZ I 00-38, T4Z111, JMM01-28, JLMS02-55. In 2016 there was a further introduction, CIA183-1 near Semirom in Esfahan Province at 2741m.

Some other interesting websites:
Greek Mountain Flora
Vanlife One
Primula World
Androsace World
Botanical Garden of the University Tübingen Germany
Gothenburg Botanical Garden Sweden
Utrecht Botanic Gardens Netherlands
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh UK
Alpine Garden Society Encyclopaedia