Will ship second week of October 2020
There is not a plant that seems to capture gardeners more than peonies. Sorry other plants. When I was considering putting together a collection of peonies, it was important to show their color range and bloom time. If you are going to grow peonies, it's best to have varieties that bloom at different times making the season last as long as possible.
The other crucial factor was sourcing them is large of root starts as possible. All of the plants in this collection are 3-5 eye root divisions. Many places sell 2-3 eyes. In the case of peonies, bigger/older root divisions are better. Now after saying that, peonies are not at their best until two to three years after planting. They get better with age, and that is one of the many reasons why they are so captivating.
Paeonia 'Bouquet Perfect' - Wouldn't we all like to be bouquet perfect? If you're going to grow peonies in the garden and not cut some for flowers to bring inside than you're just not doing it right. I asked a few grower friends in Europe about why this Paeonia got the name 'Bouquet Perfect,' and the answer was simple.
It's a great cut flower. It also is a mid-season bloomer and like with both Peony Garden Collections, extending the flowering season of peonies is the best way to grow them.
Paeonia 'Marie Lemoine' - Late season, every time I read those words, I smile. The American Peony Society gives 'Marie Lemoine' a 15 offset bloom time compared to 'Pink Hawaiian Coral' listed as a 3 offset, meaning it's a late bloomer. Having a large white flowering peony blooming as the other peonies are ending is the perfect time for Marie Lemoine to enter. In cooler climates, there is a slight cream color noticeable. 'Marie Lemoine' is also a historically important peony as it was one of the early European cultivars dating back to 1869.
Paeonia 'Pink Hawaiian Coral' - Roy Klehm is a name anyone who grows peonies should know. He is one of the premier peony hybridizers of the last 50 years. Well, before coral was a trendy color in floral design, Roy was discovering incredible seedling like 'Pink Hawaiian Coral'. The more commonly grown coral-colored peony is 'Coral Charm' which is a nice flower. In 1981, Roy introduced what he thought was a better plant in 'Pink Hawaiian Coral'. I believe Roy was correct. The two big improvements are stem strength and petal count.
Paeonia 'Raspberry Sundae' - Where do you think Roy got his love of peonies? His parents. His father Carl G Klehm introduced 'Raspberry Sundae' in 1968, but it's believed to have been selected in 1957. It is also a peony well ahead of its time. The color tones of 'Raspberry Sundae' are classic in a garden. Very subtle white guard petals hold an incredible combination of blush pink and cream interior petals. A cross somewhere between a double and an anemone-type peony. This also blooms midseason at a time where bold colors start to wake up from winter. Personally I feel having two generations of Klehm peonies in a garden creates beauty and also pays respect to important history in the gardening world.
Paeonia 'Seeing Blue' - Peonies are like wine in so many ways. There are those that see a peony and see blue while others don't see it at all. There are those that smell a peony and get little fragrance while others smell alluring perfume. There are those that see peonies as slow and other that believe they get better with age. If you are in the first group, that's unfortunate. 'Seeing Blue' is for those of us in the first group. Peonies most certainly do get better with age. In the case of 'Seeing Blue,' it will be a semi-double in year one in the garden but will mature into a full double. It is incredibly fragrant and does also show blue-purple color tones in cooler springs as the flower opens. 'Seeing Blue' also puts us on the other side of history as a new introduction to bookend 'Marie Lemoine'.