Iphigenia is a genus in the family Colchicaceae which contains 12 accepted names. Some of the species contain the toxic chemical colchicine. It was originally described by Karl Sigismund Kunth in 1843 in Enumeratio Plantarum Omnium Hucusque Cognitarum, Volume 4, page 212. In Greek mythology, Iphigenia is a daughter of Agamemnon and Clytemnestra, who Agamemnon is commanded to kill as a sacrifice to allow his ships to sail to Troy.

Iphigenia indica is found in grass lands and pine forests in China, India, Indonesia, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam and Australia from sea level to over 2000 m. There are at least 12 synonyms for this species, including Melanthium indicum, Anguillaria indica, Lloydia melanantha and Hypoxidopsis pumila. The common name is 'Indian Grass Lily'. Plants are small, 10 to 25 cm high, and grow from corms around 10 mm in diameter; the flowers are less than 2 cm across with narrow petals, dark purple enough to appear black in life. Photos 1-4 from Jim Murrain. Photo 5 shows a closeup from Dylan Hannon.

Iphigenia indica, Jim MurrainIphigenia indica, Jim MurrainIphigenia indica, Jim MurrainIphigenia indica, Jim MurrainIphigenia indica, Dylan Hannon

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