The Edmond Iris and Garden Society will hold an Iris Expo on May 3 at St. Augustine of Canterbury Episcopal Church. Members of the club will display irises grown in their gardens.
Since irises are not in bloom when rhizomes are available for sale, this is an opportunity for the public to see the flowers in bloom and better decide what they would like to grow in their own gardens. Unlike other years, gardeners can prepurchase iris rhizomes which will be available in June.
Irises are easy to grow and require little care or maintenance. Over the years, the simple blossoms have been bred to be more large, ruffled, and even to re-bloom in the fall or winter. There are antique varieties, and “Space-age”, a term used to categorize varieties having certain recently-developed traits.
By growing irises that bloom early, mid-season, or later, gardeners can usually enjoy six weeks to two months of blooms. Re-blooming irises will often bring more color to the garden around October, and a few varieties have been known to bloom in Edmond gardens in January. Iris foliage provides spots of green in the garden all year. Some irises are 36 inches tall or more, and others are a mere 4 inches. They are fragrant, with scents ranging from fruity to spicy.
The club will hold its Iris Rhizome Sale on June 6-7 at Farmer’s Grain in Edmond. Rhizomes are grown locally and dug only days before the sale, so they are fresh and acclimatized for Oklahoma conditions, and rhizomes are more economical than those from national commercial growers.
To celebrate its 90th year in existence, the club will use proceeds from this year’s sale to establish a college scholarship for a horticulture student.
The Iris Expo will be from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 3 at St. Augustine of Canterbury Episcopal Church, 14700 N May Ave. There is no admission charge.
Janet Mills is secretary of the Edmond Iris and Garden Society.