National and International Iris Societies

I'm still working on this page. If you have information that would help me to complete it, I'd be glad to hear from you.

-- Dave

Table of Contents

Other societies. (Send me me a note if you know anything about them.)

American Iris Society

The A.I.S. has a home page on the web.

The American Iris Society was founded in 1920.

Publications of the A. I. S.

The A.I.S. publishes the Bulletin of the American Iris Society quarterly, and the Iris Check List every ten years with annual updates. Past Bulletins and Check Lists are available from the A.I.S. as well as a Membership Book, RHS Colour Charts, Iris Calendars, a booklet on Basic Iris Culture, iris calendars, and the informative, 494 page The World of Irises edited by Warburton and Hamblen. Contact Jerry Gifford, 5647 Myrtlewood Drive, Nashville, TN 37211, or check the latest Bulletin for more information.

Sections of the American Iris Society and cooperating societies

Median Iris Society.
Medians consist of the middle sized bearded irises, and these are classified into four sizes: Standard Dwarf, Intermediate, Miniature Tall, and Border. The Median Iris Society was founded in 1957 and incorporated as a section of the A.I.S. in 1960. It has published a quarterly journal, The Medianite, since 1962.

The Society for Siberian Irises.
The Society for Siberian Irises was founded in 1960 as a section of the A.I.S. It publishes a semiannual journal The Siberian Iris.

Spuria Iris Society.
The Spuria Iris Society was founded in 1952.

Society for Japanese Irises.
The Society for Japanese Irises was founded as a section of the A.I.S. in 1962. It has published The Review semiannually since 1964. It has held annual conventions for Japanese Irises since 1962.

Reblooming Iris Society.
The Reblooming Iris Society was founded in 1962 and incorporated as a section of the A.I.S. in 1967. It has published The Reblooming Iris Recorder since 1962.

Dwarf Iris Society.
The Dwarf Iris Society was founded in 1950 and incorporated as a section of the A.I.S. in 1980. It has its own page on the web

Society for Pacific Coast Native Irises.

Species Iris Group of North America (SIGNA).
This group has published the SIGNA Newsletter since 1968. It has web page.

Historic Iris Preservation Society.
The Historic Iris Preservation Society was founded in 1988 as a section of the A.I.S. It publishes a journal Roots semiannually. There is a home page for HIPS.

Aril Society International.
The Aril Society International (see below) is a cooperating society of the A.I.S.

Society for Louisiana Irises.
The Society for Louisiana Irises was founded in 1941. In 1978 a section of the A.I.S. called the Louisiana Iris Society of America was created for furthering Louisiana Irises. In 1993 the two were merged as the Society for Louisiana Irises to become a cooperating society of the A.I.S. It publishes the Society for Louisiana Irises Newsletter quarterly.

Awards of the American Iris Society

The American Iris Society has announced its 1995 awards.

The hightest award by the A.I.S. is the American Dykes Medal which has been awarded since 1927. Recently the A.I.S. restructured its award system.

Exhibition Certificate (EC)
Awarded to seedlings (irises not introduced to commerce) at shows

High Commendation Award (HC)
Awarded to seedlings based on garden performance

Honorable Mention (HM)
First award to introduced irises based on garden performance

Walther Cup
Given annually to the iris which received the most votes for HM

President's Cup and Franklin Cook Cup
These are awarded at the annual national convention. The President's cup is awarded to the most popular iris inside the host region, and the Franklin Cook Cup to the most popular iris outside the host region.

Award of Merit (AM)
Second award

Third award, one named medal in each class of iris annually awarded.

Dykes Memorial Award
Fourth award, given annually to one iris which has received a medal.

National Conventions of the American Iris Society

The AIS holds a several-day convention each spring in a different location. The next will be in Sacramento, April 24-28, 1996. The following four annual conventions are scheduled for Dearborn, Denver, Oklahoma City, and Dallas.

There will be a "M.A.S.S. Medley" convention June 14-16, 1996, in Westford, Massachusetts. This "M.A.S.S." stands for "Mad About Species and Siberians."

St. Louis will host a 1996 Japanese Iris Convention and Tour June 13-15, 1996.

British Iris Society

The British Iris Society was founded in 1922.

Publications of the British Iris Society

Publishes the Iris Year Book annually.

Membership in the British Iris Society

    Mr. E. H. Furnival
    15 Parkwood Drive
    BB4 6RP
New American members may pay by check for $15.00 (in US dollars) made out to the British Iris Society and sent to Mrs. E. M. Wise, 197 The Parkway, Iver Heath, IVER, Bucks, SL0 0RQ, UK.

Awards and Shows of the British Iris Society

The society has annually awarded the Dykes Medal since 1927. In fact, the British Iris Society actually awards Dykes Medals for other societies including the American Dykes Medal and the Australasian Dykes Medal. Other awards include the Foster Memorial Plaque, the Pilkington Award, the Hugh Miller Trophy, the Souvenir de M. Lemoine, and the Fothergill Memorial Trophy. It also elects irises for the Award of Garden Merit.

The society holds an Annual Dwarf, Median, and Species Show, the Chelsea Show, and the Main Iris Show.

Canadian Iris Society

The Canadian Iris Society has a home page. The Canadian Iris Society (CIS) is a non-profit organization with the objective to encourage, improve and extend the cultivation of the genus iris and to collaborate with other societies for this purpose as well as to regulate the nomenclature and colour classification.

The CIS was founded in 1946 under the leadership of W.J. Moffat of Hamilton, Ontario who became the first president until 1956. The society functioned as a region of the American Iris Society until 1958 when the Canadian Iris Society was reorganized independently to promote irises to the gardening public throughout Canada.

The society is concerned with the whole realm of garden irises, culture, trials of newer varieties and the encouraging of hybridizers to produce varieties that are adapted to climatic conditions as they exist in our country. The Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington, Ontario is the focus of a continuing CIS project since 1964. Specifically, the Laking Garden with its huge collection of irises, is each year complimented by the addition of newer acquisition irises judged to be of high calibre by the CIS. The absolutely spectacular showing of irises in the Laking Garden is well worth a visit or two or more!

Regional Groups

Provision is made in the CIS constitution for the formation of regional groups in geographical areas where there exists enough interest. The CIS will foster and assist such groups but their functions within the framework of the society depends on the initiative of local members of that particular region.


The governing body of the CIS is comprised of a Board of Directors. The principal officers include the president, two vice-presidents, a secretary, a treasurer, an editor of the newsletter and the membership chairman. Activity Highlights June Iris Shows - During the main flowering season for tall bearded irises the CIS holds annual iris shows at various locations. Members and the public are invited to attend and enjoy these shows. Iris Sales and Auctions - Iris sales and auctions are held annually in August making available to the membership and the general public newer and quality varieties of iris at very reasonable prices.

Annual General Meeting

The final major event of the year, the Annual General Meeting, is usually held in the autumn and combines a business meeting with a guest speaker presentation, a luncheon or dinner, the election of new officers, the presentation of awards and an opportunity to get together and enjoy a programme of interest about irises to all the members who attend.


The CIS publishes a 24 page newsletter four times a year (January-April-July-October) to accommodate the needs of Canadian iris enthusiasts. Members are encouraged and invited to submit local iris news information, iris experiences and articles for publication in the newsletter. Each issue is full of informative articles about all types of iris.

Iris reference books may be borrowed by CIS members, either in person or by mail, from the Library of the Royal Botanical Gardens located at the RBG Centre building in Burlington, Ontario.

Société Français des Iris et Plantes Bulbeuses (S.F.I.B.)

Publications of S.F.I.B.

The S.F.I.B. publishes Iris et Bulbeuses quarterly.

Membership in the S.F.I.B.

Clarence Mahan writes in his column on international news in the April, 1995, Bulletin of the American Iris Society, page 24, that S.F.I.B. membership for overseas residents is 210 francs, which should be sent to the Secrétaire-Général, Mme Anne-Marie Chesnais, 19 rue du Dr. Kurzenne, 78350 JOUY-EN-JOSAS, France. He adds that an inexpensive way to convert U.S. dollars is by purchasing an International Money Order through the U.S. Post Office.

Societá d'Italiana dell'Iris

Publications of the Societá d'Italiana dell'Iris

Membership in the Societá d'Italiana dell'Iris

(Send me me a note if you know.)

Awards of the Societá d'Italiana dell'Iris

Since 1957 the society has held an annual International Iris Competition in Florence. Various awards are given including the Primio Firenze prize to the best tall bearded iris.

Gesellschaft der Staudenfreunde

Founded in 1950 as the Deutsche-Iris-und Lilien-Gesellschaft, it was renamed the Gesellschaft der Staudenfreunde in 1960 to include all perennials.

Publications of the Gesellschaft der Staudenfreunde

Publishes the quarterly journal Staudengarten.

Membership in the Gesellschaft der Staudenfreunde

(Send me me a note if you know.)

Awards of the Gesellschaft der Staudenfreunde

The society holds an annual iris competition in the Palmengarten, Frankfort, and an annual Internationa Garden Exposition for Dwarf Iris in Vienna. Various awards are given at these two events.

Nihon Hanashobu Kyokai (Japanese Iris Society)

The Nihon Hanashobu Kyokai was founded in 1931. Its primary interest is hanashoubu, that is, Japanese irises. It has published a yearbook since 1931.

Nihon Iris Kyokai (Iris Society of Japan)

The Nihon Iris Kyokai was founded in 1967. Its major interest is in irises other than the hanashobu (Japanese irises).

New Zealand Iris Society

Publications of the New Zealand Iris Society

Publishes a Bulletin.

Membership in the New Zealand Iris Society

Contact the Secretary, Marion Ball, 25 Lucknow Road, Havelock North, New Zealand.


An International Syposium on Iris is being held in Tauranga 2nd - 6th November 2000. international and local presentations. Tours are being arranged after the symposium. Options of North Island and South Island Tours. Local gardens, iris society members gardens and scenic adventures. Contact Alison Nicoll at: -

Iris Society of South Africa

	Iris Society of South Africa
	P.O. Box 2924
	Edenvale, 1610
	South Africa

The Iris Society of Australia

	Heather Pryor. Federal President of the I.S.A.
	Tel. 612 9144.3805 (H)  Fax. 612 9980.6592

	NSW Region
	PO Box 11

	Dora Cattanach, Secretary of the Victorian region I.S.A.
	1062 Norman Street, Wendouree VIC 3355
Contact Heather Pryor, listed above, for more information.

(Last updated June, 1997.) Notice: The 1998 Sunraysia Iris Convention will be October 20th to 27th, 1998. The convention headquarters will be in Mildura, Victoria. Fully detailed registration brochures are available. Contact the convenor, Dianne Dalla Santa, P.O. Box 272 Cardross, Victoria 3496, Australia or

Aril Society International

The Aril Society International has a home page on the web.

The Aril Society International promotes aril irises and their hybrids. Aril irises belong to the Hexapogon section of the Iris genus which includes the regelias, pseudoregelias, and oncocyclus. Many, but not all, of the oncocyclus are native to desert areas, and so may be grown in regions that most other irises do not survive. Modern hybrids, especially "arilbreds" which are hybrids between arils and bearded irises, may also be grown in moister regions.

Publications of the Aril Society International

The society publishes a yearbook and three newsletters per year.

Membership in the Aril Society International

See the Aril Society International's home page.

World Iris Association

The World Iris Association has recently been proposed. There is a web page describing its goals.

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David Pane-Joyce

Page created May 25, 1995