Some of these phases have happened over time and some all at once. The phases have included: Iris, Gladiolas, Penstemons, Chrysanthemums, Peonies, and the Echinacea phase and a few more too...
|Paeonia suffruticosa 'Shima Nishiki 岛锦'|
I think it comes from having a background in Chinese language and a love for formal Chinese gardens. It might also just be that I love whorish flamboyant flowers!
They grow surprisingly well in Lents too, granted a herbaceous peony is pretty indestructible once planted.
The only downside at least with the tree peonies seems to be that due to their really early bloom time (end of April/early May) they either get battered by the cold rains or the temperatures soar to 85 degrees and they get pummeled by the early heat, depending on Portland's fickle spring weather.
Thanks global warming!
|Paeonia suffruticosa 'Kamata Fuji'|
|Paeonia suffruticosa 'Lu Xiang Qiu 綠香球' still opening|
|Paeonia suffruticosa 'High Noon 海黄'|
|Paeonia suffruticosa 'Black Panther 黑豹'|