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A Plethora of Peonies


This is the week, the week of the peonies.

You can find them mostly in the older neighborhoods,

as one of their best features is their longevity,

sometimes living for as long as a hundred years.

But truly, their best feature is really

layer upon layer upon layer

of petals,putting a ballerina's costume to shame.

Impossibly beautiful,

but thankfully, not impossible to grow.

They love sunshine, preferably full sun.

Good organic soil, a minimum of fuss.

They may need to be staked,

as their flowers can outweigh their stems.

Just make sure you're good and sure

where you want them in your garden,

as they do not appreciate being moved.

As lovely as they are in the spring, they make a nice contribution

in the summer, adding in glossy green leaves and sturdy stems.

But in the fall, you're in for another treat,

with leaves turning a soft gold, slipping into red.

Their only downside?

I dislike coming up with one, but if I had to, I'd say

only two weeks of blooms, which is why I usually concentrate

on David Austen roses instead...

just as petal-y, just as fluffy, but they bloom all season long.

But really, there is just nothing quite like a peony.


Karen L Higgins, author website