The genus Iris has more than 250 species in six subgenera. Subgenus Iris is the largest subgenus with approximately 90 species that are especially well represented in Caucasia and the Middle East. The most recent revision of Iris subgenus Iris (Taylor, 1976) segregated taxa into five sections based on presence or absence of an aril, nature of beard, number of inflorescence bracts and rhizome characters. I have undertaken a phylogenetic study of Iris subgenus Iris using matK sequence and morphological data. Preliminary data does not support current sectional divisions within the subgenus. Preliminary evidence based on the inclusion of species from Iris subgenera Limniris, Scoparis and Hermodactyloides also indicates that Iris subgenus Iris may not be monophyletic.

Key words: Iris, matK