Lilla is

A quarterly literary reading series at SE Portland’s Leach Botanical Garden featuring poetry, fiction, and nonfiction on the evening’s theme. Join us from 4–6 PM for food, drink, books, nature, culture, community, and readings from Portland writers and beyond.


  • May 10, 2019, 4-6 PM
  • August 18, 2019, 4–6 PM
  • November 17, 2019, 4–6 PM


  • February 2, 2020, 4–6 PM
  • May 3, 2020, 4–6 PM
  • August 2, 2020, 4–6 PM
  • November 1, 2020, 4–6 PM

Doors open at 4 PM; readings begin at 4:15 
$10 suggested donation at the door 
Proceeds benefit Leach Botanical Garden, a 501(c)3 nonprofit
Food and drink served

Why Lilla

The series is named after botanist Lilla Leach who, with her husband John, created the house and garden that is today Leach Botanical Garden. Every aspect of Lilla’s life story is captivating—her adventures and discoveries, her dedication to exploration and education, and her long and loving relationship with John. It feels fitting that a reading series held in her home be a continuation of Lilla’s own story.  

What makes Lilla different

Keetje Kuipers at Lilla Lit. Watch her full reading.

Every Lilla event celebrates, supports, and promotes authors. Our goal is to create and deepen literary community in Portland, and to enhance the cultural life of SE Portland.

We introduce readers at Lilla with an appreciation of their voice and craft, their place in the world of writing and beyond. Each personalized introduction is meant to serve as a bridge between author and audience, bringing deeper understanding and context to the event.

Whether it’s a winter reading held in the warmth of the Fireplace Room or a summer afternoon under the trees on the Manor House terrace, the landscape and environment of Leach Botanical Garden infuses each reading with beauty.

Fall 2019

Lilla Fall Reading: Brave

November 17, 2019, 4–6 PM
Leach Botanical Garden

Lilla presents our Fall reading in the Fireplace Room of the Manor House at Leach Botanical Garden. The evening’s theme: Brave. Featuring Rebecca Clarren, Michelle DuBarry, John Larison, Jessica Mehta, Natalie Serber, and Leni Zumas.

  • Doors open at 4 PM; readings begin at 4:15
  • $10 suggested donation at the door
  • Proceeds benefit Leach Botanical Garden, a 501(c)3 nonprofit
  • As always: Wine, snacks, gorgeous surroundings, literary community aplenty
  • Follow Lilla on social media, including Facebook, for more info

See you there!

Summer 2019

Lilla’s Summer Reading: Seek

Lilla’s Summer reading at Portland’s Leach Botanical Garden featured Idris Anderson, Kate Gray, Tak Kendrick, Missy Ladygo, Gigi Little, and Anis Mojgani reading on the theme of Seek. Enjoy this video playlist from the reading.

Above: Lilla’s Summer reading playlist.