Friday, June 1, 2012

2012 APS Peony Convention Garden Tours

Today was the garden tour day of the American Peony Society's annual national convention. We all boarded the tour bus early this morning for a 3 stop tour and a catered lunch. Since Nebraska's spring was about a month early this year, we missed the peonies entirely. The first stop was Jocelyn Castle which was very ornate, my favorite part being a stained glass window seat overlooking a small tropical conservatory.
Joslyn Castle

The second stop was the Sass Memorial Garden at Mahoney State Park, with a large display of all Sass hybridized peonies and irises. There wasn't much in bloom, but the layout and gazebo were nice.
Sass Memorial Garden
(Me with APS Editor Claudia Schroer)

The last stop was Lauritzen Gardens, which had an extensive collection of peonies and Chinese tree peonies. I would have loved to have seen it in bloom. However the garden had more to offer - a large rose garden, a miniature train garden, a Victorian garden, and so much more. At Lauritzen Gardens we had a nice catered lunch, mine being chicken salad on whole wheat, which was good.
Lunch at Lauritzen Gardens

After lunch peony hybridizer Don Hollingsworth gave a presentation on how to judge peonies for the Award of Landscape Merit (ALM). All in all it was a good day. However I feel almost like I have peony withdrawal since I was ready to see lots of blooms on the garden tours today, but they were all finished blooming! I can't wait to see all of the flowers tomorrow.
Don Hollingsworth's Award of Landscape Merit Presentation

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