Tuesday, June 5, 2012

2012 APS Peony Court of Honor Winners

There were quite a lot of good entries this year in the 2012 American Peony Society Exhibition and so many different colors! As you already know from my previous post, Peony 'Hephestos' won the Grand Champion Best in Show Ribbon as well as Best Red Lutea Hybrid. However there were several other entries that made the APS Court of Honor. They were: Best White Lactiflora - Peony 'Puffed Cotton', Best Blush Lactiflora - Peony 'Mrs. Frank Beach', Best Pink Lactiflora - Peony 'Vivid Rose', Best Red Lactiflora - Peony 'Maestro', Best White/Blush/Yellow Hybrid - Peony 'Prairie Moon', Best Pink/Coral Hybrid - Peony 'Coral Supreme', Best Red Hybrid - Peony 'Illini Warrior', Best Yellow Intersectional/Itoh - Peony 'Sonoma Halo', Best White Suffruticosa - Peony 'Koshino-yuki', an unnamed variety exhibited by Timothy Stanek that was simply labeled "Apr Db" (presumably meaning Apricot Double) which was also awarded a Certificate of Merit ribbon, Best Pink Lutea Hybrid - Peony 'Ruffled Sunset', and Best Yellow Lutea Hybrid - Peony 'Souvenir de Maxime Cornu'. I think my favorite is the Apricot Double seedling. Which one is your favorite?
Peony 'Puffed Cotton'
'Mrs. Frank Beach'
Peony 'Vivid Rose'
Peony 'Maestro'
Peony 'Prairie Moon'
Peony 'Coral Supreme'
Peony 'Illini Warrior'
Peony 'Sonoma Halo'
Peony 'Koshino-yuki'
Peony "Apr Db"
(My Favorite)
Peony 'Ruffled Sunset'
Peony 'Souvenir de Maxime Cornu'

Sunday, June 3, 2012

2012 American Peony Society Board Meeting

The 2012 American Peony Society board meeting went well this morning. In addition to other business, the board arranged to move all publications to the APS editor, discussed plans to publicize membership in the society, chose writers for rewriting the APS peony handbook, and selected the new APS Gold Medal award winner. Also the site for next year's national convention was confirmed as Longwood Gardens near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. That should prove to be a high visibility convention which will hopefully attract new peony lovers, collectors, and growers and hopefully more APS members as well. The more people that love peonies, the more people that will share their love of peonies!!!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

2012 APS Peony Convention Banquet & Auction

2012 American Peony Society Banquet

The 2012 American Peony Society Banquet & Auction were nice. Even though it was a bit cold in the room, the people made it warm. The dinner was good - beef or salmon with red velvet cake for dessert, thanks to the APS Editor Claudia Schroer. :) APS President Dana Tretheway conducted a short and sweet business meeting. The presentation on the Sass family was interesting with the highlight being the actual APS Gold Medal from 1943. I'd never seen one of the actual medals before. So that was cool!
APS President Dana Tretheway
APS 1943 Gold Medal

Lucas Hudson did a great job with the auction. He is so outgoing and always has so much energy! There were fewer attendees this year, so I felt I had a better chance of winning something. So I actually bought 3 plants in the auction this year - Peony 'Halcyon', Peony 'Top Brass', and Peony 'White Cap'. I'm excited about all three of them!
Lucas Hudson APS Secretary and Auctioneer

My buddy from the bus trip the day before, Glenny, sat near me at the banquet, and I really enjoyed talking with her and all the other peony lovers as well. It was nice to be in such good peony company! :D
Glenny and Me

2012 APS Grand Champion Peony - Hephestos

Peony 'Hephestos'
The 2012 American Peony Society flower show was huge even though most of the growers complained about their seasons. I think they were just trying to set the judges' expectations a bit low so they could shine. ;) Everyone was busy with preparations this morning trying to get ready for the cut off before the judging of the show. The color of Peony 'Hephestos' must have captured the hearts of the judges this year. What a rare and dark color, which is fitting for the god of blacksmiths. It won the Court of Honor for Best Red Lutea Hybrid, and also the Grand Champion Peony, Best of Show ribbon. This peony was exhibited by Adelman Peony Gardens in Oregon. The color on all of their show peonies is always so dark and rich, and the size of their blooms are always huge. This tree peony was hybridized by Nassos Daphnis who named his varieties after Greek Gods associating the peonies he bred with his own Greek heritage.
2012 APS Peony Flower Show

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