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Greater Portland Iris Society Show

Come celebrate the elegant beauty of irises on June 24. The Greater Portland Iris Society will present a special, judged show of two varieties of late season irises.

Iris in bloom by Eight-fold Bridge (Yatsuhashi). Photo by Ray P Fortner

Native to Japan, Iris ensata is commonly known as “Japanese iris” outside of Japan. In Japan, 花菖蒲 (hanashobu) have been cultivated for over 500 years. Oregon and Washington are home to three of the nine specialty nurseries specializing in Japanese irises in the United States.

Spuria, according to the American Iris Society’s encyclopedia, “are tall (2 to 5 feet in height) and elegant, and have very attractive foliage.”

As the Garden transforms into a picturesque greenscape, the Japanese iris provide a pop of color as the harbinger of summer. The buds open in late June to reveal flowers nearly six inches across in shades of purple and white. Symbolizing purity and innocence, the narrow iris leaf resembles the shape of a samurai sword blade.

The show will feature two varieties of late season iris: iris ensata (Japanese iris) and spuria. Both individual blooms and floral arrangements will be judged by officials affiliated with the American Iris Society. Winners will be chosen around noon.

A display of the winning flowers with prize ribbons and a wooden sign stating Greater Portland Iris Society.
Winners of the 2022 show


Jordan Schnitzer Japanese Arts Learning Center

The Jordan Schnitzer Japanese Arts Learning Center was designed to be the cultural, educational, and architectural hub of the new Cultural Village. “With a new classroom, library, and performance space, the Learning Center provides an open and welcoming space where visitors can learn more about the culture that gave us the Japanese garden art form,”