Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Enchanting Peonies

I had a message on the blog this morning: "怎么今年不晒牡丹啊?" or "Why are you not sharing Peonies this year?"  

I have been remiss. I apologize!  对不起! 真是对不起!

So this is my first annual gratuitous peony picture post just for my Chinese friend. 

Several of the tree peonies I planted last year are blooming for the first time, and this spring, in a moment of weakness, I came home with several new ones, all of which are also blooming.

The herbaceous peonies are in various stages of bud, but still a few weeks behind, as they always are. That will be a future post.

The first time I lived in Taiwan in 1991, I brought a folding shoji screen back for my mother as a gift and it was a pain in the ass to get home on the airline! If I recall correctly it cost more for extra baggage to bring home then it did to actually buy it.

I have always loved it as art and it has been part of my inspiration for planting a multitude of peonies.

The Chinese idiom "国色天香" (guose tianxiang) painted on it refers to the beauty of peony flowers.

In a literal sense is means "national beauty and heavenly fragrance".


It is easy to be enchanted by the beauty of a peony.
Which brings me to the newest peonies to bloom for the first time:

Paeonia  'Taiyo 太阳' (The Sun Tree Peony)
Paeonia  'Taiyo 太阳' (The Sun Tree Peony)
Paeonia 'Kokuryu Nishiki 黑竜錦' (Black Dragon Brocade Tree Peony)
Paeonia 'Yachiyo Tsubaki 八千代椿' (Eternal Camellias Tree Peony)

Paeonia 'Houki 芳纪' (Red Tree Peony)
Paeonia 'Shima Daijin 島大臣' (Island Minister Tree Peony)
'Paeonia  'Koukamon 皇嘉门' (Floral Gate Tree Peony)
 Some old favorites:

Paeonia ostii 'Feng Dan Bai 鳳丹白' (Phoenix White Tree Peony)
Paeonia ostii 'Feng Dan Bai 鳳丹白' (Phoenix White Tree Peony)  with 'Rou Fu Rong 肉芙蓉' in back
Paeonia 'Shima Nishiki 岛锦' (Forest Flame Tree Peony)

Paeonia  'Seidei 聖代' (Glorious Reign Tree Peony)
Paeonia 'Kamata Fuji' (Wisteria of Kamata Tree Peony)

Paeonia  'High Noon 海黄' (High Noon Tree Peony)

Paeonia 'Hei Bao 黑豹' (Black Panther Tree Peony)
Paeonia 'Hei Bao 黑豹' (Black Panther Tree Peony)

Paeonia  'Rou Fu Rong 肉芙蓉' (Pink Hibiscus Tree Peony)
Paeonia suffruticosa
 I'm not sure about this one?!?

One year, before I was careful about remembering where I planted each peony, I planted this one.

I think it may be Paeonia suffruticosa 'Hua Er Qiao 花二乔' (Twin Beauty Tree Peony), but it doesn't seem like the right flower or quite the right color pattern?  

And much to my joy, there was a baby born this year!

I sprinkled Paeonia suffruticosa seeds around and looks like one took!