Artist:Utagawa Hiroshige (Ando)
Medium: Woodblock print
Dates:5th month of 1857
Dimensions: Sheet: 14 3/16 x 9 5/16 in. (36.1 x 23.6 cm) Image: 13 1/4 x 8 3/4 in. (33.7 x 22.3 cm)
Accession Number: 30.1478.64
Catalogue Description: In the village of Horikiri in suburban Edo, gardeners grew a year-round variety of flowers and were particularly famous for the iris shown here, "hanashobu," well suited to this swampy land. In this print Hiroshige has shown three, almost-life-size, detailed specimens of the nineteenth-century hanashobu hybrids and in the distance, sightseers from Edo are admiring the blossoms. In the 1870's the cultivation of hanashobu had begun to spread rapidly in Europe and America and the developed into a booming export market for the gardeners of Horikiri. The Horikiri plantations began to wane in the 1920's and eventually turned over to wartime food production. After the war, one of them was revived and is now a public park, particularly popular in May when the flowers are in bloom.