Schreiner's Iris Gardens (Salem, Oregon)


Yesterday we went on a road trip with the intention of visiting one nursery, Heirloom Roses. We ended up going to three nurseries. It turns out that a lot of the great nurseries that I use to mail-order from, are all located in the Salem, Oregon area. Heirloom Roses is located in St. Paul and Schreiner's Iris Gardens as well as Adelman's Peonies are about twenty minutes away, near Salem. All three had nice display gardens but Schreiner's had to be the most beautiful. We hit it at the right time and quite by accident. We decided to go at the last minute. Photos from Heirloom Roses and Adelman's Peonies are upcoming in a day or so.
Iris are the focal point of the garden of course but I was quite enchanted by the
lupines, delphiniums, columbine, clematis and various other perennials as well.







I was also fascinated by the Horse Chestunut trees. You can see a glimpse of the entire tree in the photo above. Below is a close-up of the blooms.

The Fringetree (Chionanthus virginicus) (below) was also quite nice. This is a tree that I grew in our Alabama garden.







Believe it or not, the only thing I bought was a corn dog. I do want iris in our garden but there were simply too many to make a decision, plus the ones we really liked were over $50! 

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy


  1. It is Iris and Clematis time in my garden too. Of course I don't have the many varieties and the amounts of iris that are in these pictures but they make me happy when I see them. I can't imagine paying $50 for an iris. It must have been out of this world beautiful. I think all of mine have been given to me. They are great performers. I love delphiniums and lupines. They just don't grow here due to our hot dry summers. They are such striking plants. I will never forget the time I saw a moose standing in a ditch full of lupines munching away. We were in Maine at the time. A fond memory. Lupines always remind me of vacations.

    1. We could not grow them in Alabama. I can't wait to try some here. I have some started from seed and they are doing well.

  2. Wow. What can I say, but "Spectacular!"

    We visited an iris garden in Tennessee a few days ago, but I guess the heat here makes irises fade faster.

    (Plus this was a state garden and I don't think it has the funds or the manpower for the upkeep that the garden in Oregon seems to get...)

    Anyway, good timing!

  3. What an abundance. Sensory overload! On a smaller scale, I get similar feeling in my own garden this time of year.
    A couple of your pictures feature huge purple heads of Alium (drool) with another 'feathery' lighter color bloom. Can you identify that plant?

    1. I think that is Meadow Rue (Thalictrum).

  4. Wow...just wow. Looking forward to the other two gardens.

  5. Stunning! One thing I admire about the PNW is how well perennials do there. I have visited Portland in August and walked through neighborhoods whose front yards were mini versions of Schreiner's gardens. In August! No doubt yours will be just as glorious.

  6. So beautiful! I remember ordering from these folks but have never visited. Thanks for letting us enjoy it vicariously through your post!

  7. Before I knew much about gardening, I knew about Schreiner's.


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