Hana-shobu Iris (Japanese water iris, or Iris ensata var. ensata) starts to bloom
with the arrival of the rainy season.
At the Iris Garden of the Shiro-kita Park (since 1934), Osaka, irises bloomed
much earlier than usual perhaps due to long warmer spring.
I like to visit Iris Garden on a rainy day because Irises look the most enchanting to me
in the softly falling rain.
Sunny day is not bad at all, however, if your visit is in the morning.
The blooms shimmered in the light, so did the reflections.
I wandered around the garden while admiring the "rainbows on earth"
in hues of blue, purple, pink, yellow, and white.
This Iris Garden has about 13000 irises of 250 different cultivars
Hanashobu irises you see in Japanese gardens around the country
are the result of careful selection and hybridizationwith other Japanese and Eurasian irises
since Edo period (1603-1867) when horticulture flourished.
Breeders and growers have created better and more colorful irises.
Each cultivar was given noble name fitting to its appearance when it was cross-bred.
Usually I don't remember the name, but these white is "夕鶴 Yu-zuru/Female Crane".
Do you see a flock of fluttering crane?
A walk through Hanashobu irises is one of the summer joys.