Articles about Peony foliage
Showing posts with label foliage. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

2019 Weak Peony Stems Knocked Down by Torrential Wind and Rain


Peony 'Lemon Chiffon' Stem Knocked Down

I'm not sure that I've ever seen a massacre quite like this one. Yes, usually the weakest stems that are most susceptible to botrytis blight will usually succumb to its stem withering powers. However we've had quite the rain these last couple of days and weeks (maybe for the last year). We've had a few thunderstorms that have been quite mighty with pummeling rain and punishing winds. So I have lots of peonies in my garden whose weaker outer stems have fallen in this tragedy. These two peonies, Peony 'Lemon Chiffon' and Peony 'Horizon', are just a couple of examples of the casualties.


Peony 'Lemon Chiffon' Outer Stems Knocked Down

Some of these buds may have opened had it not been as windy. Too bad that all of buds never seem to make it to opening day for one reason or another. It would have been nice to see these peonies in bloom with even more open flowers on each bush. Oh well, I guess I will cut them off before the weakened stems transmit the disease to the healthier parts of the peony plant. No sense crying over spilled milk, I suppose. There are still lots of other blooms in the garden waiting to open!


Peony 'Horizon' Stem Knocked Down


Peony 'Horizon' Outer Stems Knocked Down

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

2019 Questions - Intersectional Peonies How to Cut Back Stems with Buds


Intersectional Peonies with Above Ground Buds

I received this question from Joy in zone 8a:

"First and foremost, thank you for having a most informative website on one of my most loved flowering plants."

"I am writing to you today, as I’m just now getting out into the garden and tidying up my peonies, which I usually cut them back in the fall. I noticed that my Itoh Peony Julia Rose (I have 2 and planted them in 2012) have developed eyes on last years dead stems and as normal, eyes also stemming from the ground. I’ve never seen this before and thought perhaps that it was a result of not cutting them back in the fall. I’m not sure how to proceed with spring clean up and thought to seek your most valuable advice."

"Thank you for your time and look forward to your guidance."


Intersectional Peonies with Above Ground Buds

Actually intersectional (also called Itoh) peonies can grow and bloom from woody stems grown in previous years (especially in our warmer Southern climates). I actually did an experiment to see what would happen with those stems, 2011 Peony Experiments - Intersectional Blooms. So when you are cleaning up your intersectional peonies that have woody stems in place, be sure to keep those stems where you can visibly see a red growth bud at the top. Then just pick off any old leaves or foliage from that stem. For all of the other stems, cut them back to the first red growth bud that you see. You can make the cut a little above the growth bud, leaving an inch or a half inch or so.

I usually wait to cut back my intersectional peonies later than the rest of my peonies, usually late winter (sometimes early spring if I'm really behind). It is possible that some of those above ground stems could get killed over the winter and some may not. By waiting to cut them back later in the winter season, you'll then know which ones will grow and which ones were killed. That way you can cut back any that didn't make it. If I do happen to cut my intersectional peonies back early (in late fall), then I generally leave all stems with buds on them, cutting them back to the first pink bud. Sometimes they don't all make it through the winter, though.

I hope you enjoy your 'Julia Rose' Intersectional Peonies this spring! Take Care and Happy Growing!


Intersectional Peonies with Above Ground Buds

Sunday, March 3, 2019

2019 The Corals are Coming! Peonies That Is


Coral Peonies Popping Up

It's that time. The foliage on my coral herbaceous peonies always starts to appear earlier than any of my other herbaceous peonies. (That doesn't mean they will bloom first, though.) It is already up several inches. Pictured here (from left to right) are Peony 'Coral Sunset', Peony 'Coral Charm', and Peony 'Tropicana'. It looks like Peony 'Tropicana' is winning the race this year. It is definitely the tallest peony in the garden so far. Peony 'Coral Charm' is usually the tallest one. I'm wondering if the extra mulch I added around it might have slowed it down this year. I can't wait for the all of my peonies to start blooming! The first ones are always the sweetest.

We have a few nights of sub-freezing temperatures coming up this week. So I'm glad most of my peonies are still below ground. It's going to be in the 20s overnight for at least 3 nights this week, it looks like (starting tomorrow night!). I'm not sure if I will try protecting this this time or not. While I try to wait out these last few days (or weeks - we'll see!) of winter weather, I can still dream about the gorgeous blooms to come! Here's a few photos of these three coral beauties taken last year so we can all start dreaming of our springtime peony blooms now...! Happy Dreaming!


Peony 'Coral Sunset'


Peony 'Coral Charm'


Peony 'Tropicana'

Friday, February 15, 2019

2019 It's Starting! Herbaceous Peonies are Growing!

I can't believe it is starting already. I found a few of my existing herbaceous peonies that I've had for years that have decided to start growing. Spring will be here before we know it! The first three I've found so far this year are Peony 'Tropicana', Peony 'Pink Hawaiian Coral, and Peony 'America'. Also the Peony 'Glowing Candles' that sprouted super early, 2019 Peony 'Glowing Candles' Tries to Grow Again in January, has been hanging on for a while now. It is very determined and even has two foliage shoots now! However I'm not sure yet if I will see a bloom from it this spring or not. It is just so exciting beginning to see the first signs of spring. My hellebores are coming into full bloom now, and the daphnes have been heavily perfuming the air - what a gorgeous and good smelling preview of what's to come!


Peony 'Tropicana'


Peony 'Pink Hawaiian Coral'


Peony 'America'


Peony 'Glowing Candles'

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

2019 Peony 'Glowing Candles' Tries to Grow Again in January

Well, the first sprout on my newly planted Peony 'Glowing Candles' has already died. Back in November, shortly after I planted this peony root (in October), it sprouted the first time, 2018 Song Sparrow Peony Root Sprouting in the Fall. Now it's January, and it is sprouting again. We always have weird winter weather here in NC. You never really know what you're going to get, like the 2018 7 Inches of Snow on Southern Peony Gardens! we got this December. It was 71 degrees on January 1st for the high and 31 degress on the 21st for the high. It's mostly been in the 50s, 60s, or 40s for the high, but we've had some much colder weather so far this week. The 17 degree overnight temperatures we've had this week have surely done it in again. I just hope this thing has some eyes left (and energy) come spring!


Peony 'Glowing Candles' Growing Again in January

The more I think about this, the more I feel sure this root must have been refrigerated for some time (maybe even an extended period of time). I bought this root from the 2018 Fall Peony Sale @ Song Sparrow where they had 7 select peony varieties on sale for $19.95. The varieties they put on sale were 'David Harum', 'Glowing Candles', 'Green Lotus', 'High Adventure', 'Honey N Cream', 'Jubilee Pink', and 'Scarlet O'Hara'. I'm guessing those 7 varieties must have been overstocked and were in need of being sold, thus the price markdown. I couldn't resist buying Peony 'Glowing Candles', though, because it just looks so lovely. I'm wondering if anyone else who bought a root or two from this sale has had the same experience as me with having them sprout early (just curious)...

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

2018 Song Sparrow Peony Root Sprouting in the Fall


Newly Planted Peony 'Glowing Candles'
Sending Up an Fall Sprout

Awww, man. A peony I ordered from the 2018 Fall Peony Sale @ Song Sparrow and just planted three weeks ago is already sprouting. Of course it looks like a nice sprout that probably would have produced a bud and flower next spring. When this happens it seems like these peonies take so much longer to become established here. It seems like they are just confused, but what is confusing to me is why is this root really sprouting? I have ordered peonies from other vendors in Wisconsin, without this issue. I used to think it was sprouting just because it came from a cooler region of the country, but now I am wondering if it is because this root has already been in some kind of cold storage, and it thinks it has already experienced winter. Now that it has arrived here in my Southern garden, it thinks our temperate autumn days feel like spring (and they probably do).


Peony 'Glowing Candles' Sign

This problem has occurred a several times in the past, but it looks like I've only recorded it here two other times, 2012 Newly Planted Peony Sprouting in Fall and 2016 New Peony Breaking Dormancy Too Early. I seem to remember this happening several times with roots from Song Sparrow, I guess I will have to record this whenever it happens in the future so I can keep a better record of which vendors this happens with. Of the two listed above, one of those was from Song Sparrow (2012), and the other one was from Ebay (2016) - which who knows where that peony root came from originally? The problem with these early sprouts is that they are quickly killed by the cold winter temperature, and the root has just wasted quite a bit of energy sending up this sprout. I never really know what to do with these sprouts, cut them off, let them grow. I worry that if I snap them off, another bud on the same root will try to sprout, wasting another chance for the peony to grow in the spring. I usually end up watching this small, lonely sprout grow as much as it can before winter's cold comes and makes it wither into limp nothingness. :-( What do you do with your fall peony foliage "sprouts"?

Sunday, November 4, 2018

2018 Beautiful Fall Burgundy Peony Foliage Colors & Coral Drift Rose

I couldn't help but snap a picture of this gorgeous deep burgundy fall peony foliage with the contrast of the bright coral colored drift rose blooming nearby. I've been cleaning up the garden this fall, cutting back my peony foliage for the year, and I couldn't keep my eyes off of this pretty pair. These two fall friends gleamed in the sun from across the garden. As I came in for a closer look and to snap a photo, the leaves of the peony plant rustled, and I noticed a small lizard happily using the peony leaves as a perch. I snapped a photo of him too. He was a little scared of me, and jumped back onto a peony stem a bit farther away, but he didn't run away. He let me take several shots of him, and even looked right at me on one of the shots! What a cutie. I hope that you too are taking a little time to enjoy autumn's colors and our wildlife friends out in the fall garden! Happy Fall!


Coral Drift Rose & Peony with Burgundy Fall Foliage


Burgundy Fall Peony Foliage


Coral Drift Rose


Lizard on Fall Peony Foliage

Saturday, March 17, 2018

2018 Peony New Growth Foliage Colors

I've been wanting to do a survey like this for a long time. Foliage Color has been an item on my Surveys page for years, with no activity under it. Finally, I am able to starting recording something here. I've always thought it was neat how the new foliage of herbaceous peonies varied so much. I don't really see this kind of variation in the new foliage of intersectional peonies or tree peonies. So this article will focus mostly on herbaceous peonies. If you've not yet noticed the beautiful color variations in the new peony foliage, I'm about to open your eyes. Growing peonies to see the blooms is only part of the fun. Watching their new stems unfurl each spring, with bright neon green, scarlet red, or a lavender-tinted pink new foliage is just so exciting.

Herbaceous Peonies New Foliage Colors

Below you will find a sampling of some of the new peony foliage colors in my garden. The deep foliage colors of the chocolate peonies is so titillating. The bright neon green of the golden herbaceous peonies is so surprising. The red stems of the coral peonies seems so fitting. The lavender-pink foliage of the lavender peonies is so sweet. If you don't have peonies with a range of new spring foliage colors, now might be the time to start thinking about which peonies you'll add to your garden this fall to excite and entertain you next spring.
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Horizon'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Golden Wheel'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Lavender'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Roselette's Baby'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Many Happy Returns'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Perfect Princess'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Grace Root'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Flame'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Rose Garland'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Lustrous'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Paula Fay'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Great Lady'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Sarah Bernhardt'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Paladin'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Coral Charm'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Coral Fay'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Do Tell'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Martha W.'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Dark Chocolate'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Gay Paree'
New Foliage Colors
Peony 'Lake o' Silver'
New Foliage Colors
Tree Peony 'Fuchsia Ruffles'

Sunday, March 12, 2017

2017 I Found a Diamond In My Peony!


Diamond in My Peony

I don't know if it was luck or coincidence, but something caught my eye as I happened to walk by my intersectional peony garden today. The sun was going down, and there was just a bit of sunlight still glinting off the emerging red-toned intersectional peony foliage. Something in the foliage shimmered with facets of light, and shined like a diamond. I couldn't help but take a closer look to see what it was...

Intersectional Peony 'Unique' Foliage

When I got closer I found something very beautiful. It wasn't a diamond made of carbon, but a diamond made of water! It was so amazing. I wanted to capture it before the sun went down, before the water succumbed to the forces of gravity, before my diamond disappeared! I raced into the house to grab my camera. As luck would have it when I got back outside with my camera, the sun was still shining, and my water droplet diamond was still there! So I was able to capture these gorgeous photos of my Intersectional Peony 'Unique' foliage holding a water orb from several angles.

Intersectional Peony 'Unique' with Water Orb

How in the world did this water orb diamond come about anyway? Well Mother Nature was kind enough to give us a light dusting of snow this morning after a couple of weeks of temperatures in the 60s and 70s. Needless to say the snow melted quickly and was gone before noon. However a few of those snowflakes combined and formed this water orb. This seems like one of those once in a lifetime photos. Everything lined up just right in order for this water droplet diamond to be created, found, and photographed. The endless beauty of Mother Nature never ceases to amaze me. It makes my heart sing to find examples of this natural beauty each day.

Light Dusting of Snow on Emerging Peonies