This is peony ‘Coral Charm’. Wow – what a beauty !!! These new peonies are available in limited quantities, and make incredible cut flowers. Similar ones like ‘Pink Hawaiian Coral’ and ‘Coral Sunset’ are just as amazing . They lack the divine scent of other peonies, but make up for it in colour. Super hardy and tolerant, peonies like full sun and ordinary soil. They bloom best in ‘crummy’ soil – not too rich or you’ll get lots of leaves and not as many blooms. These varieties are available across Canada and the U.S. – make your local nursery get them for you. An excellent mail order source in Canada is GardenImport (www.gardenimport.com) of Toronto. I am a peony addict, and am especially fond of single bloom types and Tree Peonies. I took mine with me when I moved to Langley and they are thriving in the new peony beds I have created out there.
Tree peonies don’t mind a bit of overhead shade. Their tissue-like blooms are often shattered by rain and burnt by hot sun, so under high trees is ideal. I visited a tree peony nursery in Connecticut a few years ago, and each plant had a Chinese parasol over it, tilted just so. It looked wonderful, and did the job of big trees. Tree peonies are slow to ‘get going’. It takes about three years to get more than one stunning flower, but once established, they become small, woody shrubs up to about four feet tall. Don’t prune them – dormant buds probably contain a massive flower and you are cutting them off ! I wait til mid-spring and only cut off truly dead wood and dead branches. There are always some with absolutely no sign of life. The best source for tree peonies, probably on earth, is Song Sparrow Nursery in Wisconsin. They ship to Canada and are a fabulous company. www.songsparrow.com will thrill you for hours ! A good tree peony is about $100.00 – it takes years to graft and raise these and it is not an unfair price. How much are factory made-in-China shoes ? Or a bottle of wine ? Perfume? Hookers? Peonies live for centuries and are a bargain !
‘Ariadne’ is one of my favourites. I got it and others from Song Sparrow Nursery, by mail. Tree peonies (from them) must be shipped while dormant, so don’t expect yours instantly…..
”Harvest’ (below) is a tawny gold with pinky edges . Look very carefully at the stamens in the centre…. don’t they look like twirled bits of wool ? I’ve never seen this before in a flower.