The peony is named after Paeon (also spelled Paean), who was a student of Asclepius, the Greek god of medicine and healing. One version of the story goes that Paeon, known as the healer of the gods, used a peony to treat a wound for Zeus. When Asclepius became murderously jealous of his pupil, Zeus saved Paeon by turning him into a peony flower.
Did you know a peony flower can reach up to 10 inches wide? Our largest flower to date is a pink peony at 7 inches. How did we have a flower so large? We left one bud per stem. The flower is larger and the plant is healthier. It is a win-win situation. We have peonies in several flower beds.
- Smells wonderful.
- They are perfect to cover daffodil foliage as the daff’s gather energy for next year’s blooms.
- Dies back to the ground. (Does not hold snow against a structure)
- Variety in color and size creates visual interest throughout the garden. (Not the same everywhere)
- Make a great half wall in my garden rooms
- Does bring in black ants, but we have never had a problem with the ants.
- Peony petal jelly is delicious!
- Works great for Zone 5
- Ranges in size from 2 feet to 3 feet. Tree peonies not included.
- Does require watering
- Add a cage of flower support in the spring
- For larger flowers remove all but one bud per stem
- Regular peonies – cut back to the ground every winter (after greens have died). Do not do this for Tree peonies.
- I add chicken manure in the winter
Propagate by seed or root divisions.
- 4 c peony petals, tightly packed
- 4 c boiling water
- 1/2 lemon
- 1/2 package certo pectin crystals
- 2 c sugar
- Put the petals in a bowl and cover with boiling water. use a plate on top to press them down and make sure they are all covered in water
- Leave for 6 hours.
- Strain through a cloth and wring out tightly to get all the liquid. Discard petals.
- Pour liquid into a pot (I had 2 cups) add strained juice of half a lemon, pectin and 2 cups sugar.
- Bring to a boil and simmer for about 20 minutes until it reaches 215 degrees F or 104C.
- Pour into sterilized jars and let cool.