Articles about Peony best performer
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Wednesday, May 8, 2019

2019 Peony 'Smith Family Yellow' Best Performer - Week 5


Intersectional Peony 'Smith Family Yellow'
Southern Peony Best Performer

It didn't take long for this beauty to get to be a full sized magnificent plant. I first planted this Intersectional Peony 'Smith Family Yellow' in 2015, and it has grown rapidly ever since. This peony was hybridized by Don Smith, and he even mentions it as being one of his most popular with the public in my interview with him, 2016 Peony Hybridizer Interview - Don R. Smith. It was registered in 2002. So it's actually a pretty new peony to the market. I know that Peony 'Bartzella' is the gold (pun intended) standard of intersectional peonies, but this one is a little better to me. There is less red in the blooms, and the petals are a bit more regular and rounded. Each ones of the blooms is like a bright yellow sunshine on the bush. The blooms cover the bush well on all sides, and the bright yellow blooms of this peony just lift you up and make you feel sunny! It looks like there are 2 vendors offering it for sale this year (at the same price point I bought it for in 2015), 2019 Intersectional Peony Catalog Price Comparison List. I'm sad to say it hasn't come down in price at all since I bought it 4 years ago, but it is worth every penny!


Intersectional Peony 'Smith Family Yellow'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Intersectional Peony 'Smith Family Yellow'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Intersectional Peony 'Smith Family Yellow'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

2019 Peony 'Watermelon Wine' Best Performer - Week 4

I must say there is something about Peony 'Watermelon Wine' that really calls you from across the garden. I think it may be the vibrant hot pink color, the way it holds its blooms high above the plant, did I mention the enchanting color? Intersectional Peony 'Watermelon Wine' was hybridized by Roger Anderson and registered in 1999. This plant has grown really well every year in my garden since I've gotten it. Of course it came to me as a really huge root, so it had a great starting point. I can't wait to see how it continues to grow and bloom! There are a couple of peony growers offering this intersectional peony for sale this year. Check out our 2019 Intersectional Peony Catalog Price Comparison List for availability and prices. This brazen beauty is very vigorous, quite a tall plant, and flowers reliably, and has HOT PINK flowers (a rare color for intersectional peonies these days).


Intersectional Peony 'Watermelon Wine'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Intersectional Peony 'Watermelon Wine'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Intersectional Peony 'Watermelon Wine'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

2018 Peony 'Topeka Garnet' Does it Again


Peony 'Topeka Garnet' 2018

Peony 'Topeka Garnet' performed so well in my garden this year, I just couldn't help but share it again. It was just named a Southern Peony Best Performer last year in 2017, and it is very well deserved. This peony has steadily increased in size and blooms every year it has been in my garden. The picture above is what it did in my garden this year, 2018, and the picture below was from last year, 2017. You can see there is a huge difference in both the size and the number of blooms, with unbelievable growth in the last year! There was such a astounding difference in the photos, that I just had to add this year's photo to the Peony 'Topeka Garnet' Southern Peony Best Performer page. This peony went from 3 stems in in 2013, to 7 stems in 2014, to 10 stems in 2015, to 12 stems in 2016, to 15 stems in 2017, to now 22 stems this year in 2018! The number of blooms on it was amazing. I love it when there is more bloom on the bush than there is green, and Peony 'Topeka Garnet' definitely delivered - with 29 gorgeous, red blooms this year!


Peony 'Topeka Garnet' 2017

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

2018 Peony 'White Emperor' Best Performer - Week 5

Of all the white intersectionals I grow, this one, Intersectional Peony 'White Emperor' has definitely performed the best for me so far. I'm not sure why there aren't more white intesectional peonies. I only know of two, and I believe they are both sports of yellow intersectional peonies. This one, Intersectional Peony 'White Emperor' is a sport of Intersectional Peony 'Yellow Emperor', which also grows well for me. Intersectional Peony 'White Emperor' is a consistent performer year after year, always growing and increasing in size and blooms. It was hybridized/discovered by Bill Seidl and registered in 1989. The blooms open with a creamy white center and become more white as the blooms age. If you haven't heard of Intersectional Peony 'White Emperor', I'm not surprised. It seems that not many people grow it, but they should. I've only seen it offered by Swenson Gardens (which is where I purchased it). According to my Price Lists, it looks like they are offering it this year for $100, and it is not yet sold out. Don't miss your chance! :-)

Intersectional Peony 'White Emperor'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Intersectional Peony 'White Emperor'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

2018 Peony 'Hillary' Best Performer - Week 4

Well, I believe the accolades for this beautiful peony are long overdue. This Intersectional Peony 'Hillary' is a stellar performer, and I feel very lucky to grow this plant in my garden. The colors on the gorgeous plant start out a beautiful shade of pink with a hint of coral. Over a few days the blooms fade to a paler peachy pink color, which is just as gorgeous. The effect of the new and old blooms on the plant creates a multi colored feast for the eyes on the bush. The blooms also feature a reddish flare in the center which becomes more prominent as the petals lighten in color. This intersectional peony was hybridized by Roger Anderson and registered in 1999. If you don't yet own this intersectional peony, I highly recommend it. It can typically be found in the $50 price range, and is listed from several sellers on my 2018 Intersectional Peony Catalog Price Comparison List.

Intersectional Peony 'Hillary'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Intersectional Peony 'Hillary'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Intersectional Peony 'Hillary'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

2018 Tree Peony 'Angel Emily' Best Performer - Week 3

I do not cease to be amazed by this tree peony. I used to not really like tree peonies all that much, but I have to credit this one with changing my mind. Tree Peony 'Angel Emily' is a dream plant. It has wonderful vigor, increasing in size and blooms every year. Its bloom buds withstand our late freezes, and the color of the flower just blows your mind. This tree peony was hybridized by Bill Seidl and registered jointly by Bill and Nate Bremer in 2013. I missed being able to purchase it in 2013, but by 2014, I was ready to hunt it down. The pictures of this full grown plant on Solaris Farms' web site called to me! The semi-double flowers are a beautiful shade of lavender with just a hint of pink. The petals are large and ruffled, the center of which emanates a dark purple flare. If you missed your chance to purchase this one again this year (it is already sold out for 2018), make sure to put it on your 2019 peony purchase list!
Tree Peony 'Angel Emily'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Tree Peony 'Angel Emily'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Tree Peony 'Angel Emily'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

2018 Tree Peony 'White Phoenix' Best Performer - Week 2

Of all the tree peonies I've tried to grow, this one is definitely the easiest to grow. It doesn't mind our heat. The bush gets larger every year - no shrinkage. And the blooms become more and more plentiful as well. It is a great start to the peony season, with plenty of brilliant white blossoms decorating a nice bush. Tree Peony 'White Phoenix' 鳳丹白(Feng Dan Bai) is a Chinese cultivar of p. ostii. If you don't grow any tree peonies, and are looking for a good one to start with, this one is it. It is relatively inexpensive (compared to most other tree peonies),is widely grown (so it should be easy to find), and really takes care of itself (requiring very little intervention). Also if you do already grow tree peonies, this one would be an easy going variety to add to your collection. It really is a great tree peony for all peony lovers.

Tree Peony 'White Phoenix' 鳳丹白(Feng Dan Bai)
Southern Peony Best Performer


Tree Peony 'White Phoenix' 鳳丹白(Feng Dan Bai)
Southern Peony Best Performer

Monday, May 1, 2017

2017 Peony 'Topeka Garnet' Best Performer - Week 4

I must say that I have been very impressed with how fast Peony 'Topeka Garnet' has developed in my garden. It has grown from 3 stems, to 7 stems, to 10 stems, to 12 stems, to now 15 stems this year. Each year its bud and blooms counts have been steadily increasing as well. This peony stands up in the face of heat, rain, and wind. It definitely thrives here in our warm Southern climate. This photo was taken after a big storm. As you can see a few of the blooms have been open for a few days and yet the bright red color is unaffected. The blooms have such good substance and the petals are so tough that they hang on even through a storm, giving you a nice red petaled show! The number of flowers on the bush is amazing, and I'd even already cut two stems to enter into the APS Exhibition this year! Peony 'Topeka Garnet' was hybridized by Bigger and registered in 1975. If you are looking for a good mid season red to add to your collection, I would highly recommend Peony 'Topeka Garnet'!

Peony 'Topeka Garnet'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Topeka Garnet'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Topeka Garnet'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Monday, April 24, 2017

2017 Peony 'Julia Rose' Best Performer - Week 3

I just can not stop looking at (or taking pictures of) this Peony 'Julia Rose' plant this year. Every bloom on the plant is gorgeous. The colors of the petals are beautiful ombres of pink, orange, and coral. This intersectional Peony 'Julia Rose' was hybridized by Roger Anderson and does not yet seem to be registered. However this plant has been on the market for quite some time. This plant holds the flowers nicely above the foliage and the blooms are spaced evenly around the plant. The blooms open over a period of time, so you get to enjoy the blooms for a couple weeks. If you don't yet grow Intersectional Peony 'Julia Rose', it should definitely be on your list. You can find this peony for sale from several growers on my 2017 Intersectional Peony Catalog Price Comparison List. Good luck!

Intersectional Peony 'Julia Rose'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Intersectional Peony 'Julia Rose'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Monday, April 17, 2017

2017 Peony 'Lustrous' Best Performer - Week 2

I have loved this peony, Peony 'Lustrous', for years now. It is just so hard to get a photo of the plant with several blooms on it all at once! The buds usually open over a period of time instead of all at one time. So you don't get a plant full of blooms effect with this peony variety. However the upside of that is that you get to enjoy them bloom by bloom over a period of time. As you can see two of the flowers have already opened and faded in this photo, several are open, and there are 6 big fat buds on it still waiting to open! Peony 'Lustrous' was hybridized by A. P. Saunders and registered in 1942. It is one of the standout peonies in my Saunders peony garden. It is beautiful for it rare, true red coloring, its early season, and its very full, semi-double flowers when most other herbaceous peonies opening at this time are single petaled blooms. If you haven't yet added Peony 'Lustrous' to your early blooming peony collection, now's the time, so you too can enjoy these luscious red peony blooms!

Peony 'Lustrous'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Lustrous'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Friday, May 20, 2016

2016 Peony 'Guidon' Best Performer - Week 7

I have had Peony 'Guidon' for a long time now - (over 10 years!), and it always makes a huge bush with loads of flowers. There are always multiple buds per stem. Even with the weight of several very large and very double pink flowers, the extra strong stems usually keep most blooms off of the ground. The characteristic of having multiple buds per stems also allows the flowers to open over a longer period, keeping this peony full of flowers for a couple of weeks. Peony 'Guidon' was hybridized by C. J. Nicholls and registered in 1941. This peony is a late bloomer. However, it doesn't always bloom this late in my garden. This has just been quite a weird weather year. However, if you are looking for a late blooming peony to brighten up your landscape (and your mood!), Peony 'Guidon' is it! This peony has is all - tons of colorful blooms, large healthy foliage, and perfectly shaped flowers, each one unique!

Peony 'Guidon'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Guidon'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Friday, May 6, 2016

2016 Peony 'Takara' (Treasure) Best Performer - Week 5

Peony 'Takara' 慈悲 (Treasure) aka 'Smith Opus 2' is another one of the peonies in Monrovia's Japanese Itoh Collection that was hybridized by Don R. Smith. This bush surprised me this year with its beauty and blooms this week in the mid late season. The flowers on this plant are more like a single. However, the color of the blooms is just gorgeous, with a pink orange color in the center of the petals with a wide picotee edge of an almost pink lavender color. Then the center of the blooms have hot pink red center flares that kind of form a star pattern! The blooms themselves may be single, but they are huge! If you are looking for another valuable and worthy intersectional peony to add to your collection, Peony 'Takara' 慈悲 (Treasure) is it!

Peony 'Takara' 慈悲 (Treasure)
'Smith Opus 2'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Takara' 慈悲 (Treasure)
'Smith Opus 2'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Friday, April 29, 2016

2016 Peony 'Sonoma Amethyst' Best Performer - Week 4

Peony 'Sonoma Amethyst' was hybridized by Irene Tolomeo and registered in 2001. So in the world of peonies, it is fairly new. However, with its unique coloring and numerous side buds, this plant is rapidly becoming a favorite garden specimen. This peony is a consistent performer growing larger and larger each year, with more and more blooms each year too! I am in love with the color - the clearest lavender colored peony in my garden. Peony 'Sonoma Amethyst' is even more lavender than Peony 'Lavender'! Also see all of those gorgeous lavender colored side buds on the plant? Those are more blooms that haven't even opened yet! This peony just keeps blooming and blooming! So if you like any shade of purple or lavender and you want to keep the blooms coming, Peony 'Sonoma Amethyst' is definitely a must have!

Peony 'Sonoma Amethyst'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Sonoma Amethyst'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Friday, April 22, 2016

2016 Peony Roy Pehrson's Best Yellow Best Performer - Week 3

If you've ever really, really wanted a super early yellow peony for your Southern garden, then Peony 'Roy Pehrson's Best Yellow' is it! No other early yellow outperforms this peony. The bright pastel yellow blooms are always a sight for your winter weary eyes. Their light yellow blossoms with bright sunny yellow centers bring a smile to my face each spring. Peony 'Roy Pehrson's Best Yellow' was hybridized by Pehrson and registered in 1982. This peony increases well here, and comes back reliably year after year. Besides the rare color of this peony's flowers, the foliage really stands out. The huge leaves have a great presence in the garden and are a pleasing light green hue. If you don't grow this peony for its flowers, you may want to grow it for its colossal foliage!

Peony 'Roy Pehrson's Best Yellow'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Roy Pehrson's Best Yellow'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Friday, April 8, 2016

2016 Peony 'Halcyon' Best Performer - Week 1

I must say that I am usually not too impressed by Week 1 peonies. They can and do bloom here, but often they only have one or two blooms or the blooms aren't very spectacular. I must say that I have been really impressed by Peony 'Halcyon' this year. It put up 5 blooms this year, and it looks there will be even more next year (as long as we don't get a hard late frost)! Peony 'Halcyon' was hybridized by Professor A. P. Saunders and registered in 1948. In its registration, it is described as blush with purple flares. However, the flowers in my garden open a light pink violet and fade to blush over time. The flares are not purple, but more of a darker pink violet than the rest of the bloom, which makes for a very lovely flower, especially so early in the season. If you are looking for a pretty pastel peony to start your peony bloom season, this one is it!

Peony 'Halcyon'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Halcyon'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

2015 Peony 'Keiko' (Adored) Best Performer - Week 4

I must say I am really impressed with Peony 'Keiko'™ 愛幕 (Adored) this year. This peony just wowed me with its performance! This is only the second year that this intersectional peony has bloomed in my garden. I did purchase a large potted Monrovia Itoh Peony 'Keiko'™ 愛幕 (Adored) (also known as Peony 'Pink Double Dandy') plant from a local nursery in the fall almost two years ago. So I'm sure that gave it a great head start, but besides that it has just really taken off once it was able to send out its roots. Last spring this plant had 9 blooms on it. This year the plant had over 35 blooms on it! Also this peony plant was blooming for two weeks straight, and Week 4 was definitely its prime, peak bloom season. Peony 'Keiko'™ 愛幕 (Adored) has numerous side buds that open after its main buds which keep the blooms coming. This intersectional peony also shrugged off our late frost this year, with no apparent bud damage. The blooms on this plant are just awesome, opening a bright pink and fading to a softer pink over time. So if you are looking for a great intersectional peony to add to your collection, Peony 'Keiko'™ 愛幕 (Adored) is definitely it!

Peony 'Keiko'™ 愛幕 (Adored)
'Pink Double Dandy'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Keiko'™ 愛幕 (Adored)
'Pink Double Dandy'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

2015 Peony 'Coral Charm' Best Performer - Week 2

Peony 'Coral Charm' certainly is a charmer. It blooms early and has a very unique and lovely coral color. This particular peony was even divided for donation two years ago. The first spring after division it suffered a bit. This year it has come back even stronger and more beautiful. A large portion of this Peony 'Coral Charm' plant was given as part of my APS Peony Donation to JC Raulston Arboretum. So it has certainly grown well here, even after begin divided. Peony 'Coral Charm' is also an American Peony Society Gold Medal Winner from 1986. So if you are looking for a coral peony to add to your collection, peony 'Coral Charm' is definitely the coral peony you're looking for!

Peony 'Coral Charm'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Coral Charm'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Monday, June 2, 2014

2014 Peony 'Paul M. Wild' Best Performer - Week 7

As I look around my garden, I find the last peony blooming its bright pink heart out, Peony 'Paul M. Wild'. He's like the last man standing in the wild west. The man, the peony that can outlast all others. Sure he's a little rough and tumble around the edges, his petals browning a little on the edges, but by this time of year whose edges aren't? Peony 'Paul M. Wild' is a dark pink, very full double peony and consistently a very late bloomer. He holds his guns until the end, and provided the weather hasn't defeated everyone by now, he lets them loose in an explosion of bright, end of the season color. So if you're looking for a peony that will not only add some additional time to your peony bloom season, but also add some bang to it, then Peony 'Paul M. Wild' is definitely your man!

Peony 'Paul M. Wild'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Paul M. Wild'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Monday, May 26, 2014

2014 Peony 'Myra MacRae' Best Performer - Week 6

When I look out in my garden, almost all of the peonies have faded by this time in the season. However one stellar bloomer stands out in an otherwise almost empty peony garden, Peony 'Myra MacRae'. This peony has increased steadily each year, and the blooms have become larger and more gorgeous with each spring season. The flowers on this peony are so large and heavy that support is a must. Without support I couldn't have selected this peony as a Best Performer, since all of the blooms would be on the ground otherwise. This is the first year I put a peony support on any peony, and Peony 'Myra MacRae' was my first choice. The blooms are such a lovely pink violet Color. Peony 'Myra MacRae' is also an American Peony Society Gold Medal winner from 1998. So if you are willing to add some support for a peony and are looking for a great late season bloomer, Peony 'Myra MacRae' will definitely give you some late season smiles.

Peony 'Myra MacRae'
Southern Peony Best Performer


Peony 'Myra MacRae'
Southern Peony Best Performer

Monday, May 19, 2014

2014 Southern Peony Best Performers By Week

Southern Peony Best Performer
In case you were hoping to expand your blooms season, and were wondering what varieties would do best in a southern climate, I've added a table to my Southern Peony Best Performers page to help you find what you're looking for. This table is a handy reference of the peonies that do well for me here in my climate and whose individual flowers look good alone and together on the bush. I select the most impressive bush each week of my growing season (if there is one), and give them this designation to help all of you select the best varieties for your growing climate. I hope you find this information helpful. If you have any Questions, please send them in!