New Peony


I have planted thousands and thousands of plants. Thousands of bulbs, thousands of vegetables, thousands of annual flowers. And well maybe hundreds of perennials and shrubs. And a few dozen trees. But peonies just always seemed too grown up. Maybe it was May Sarton’s description of planting a peony in her book Plant Dreaming Deep. Peonies supposedly hate transplanting — I can’t testify, because I never have and don’t know anyone who has. They’re one of the longest lived perennials. Basically you put them in the ground, and they stay put for decades. I know the peonies at the Garden of Union were the one perennial that stood there ground for the 20 years I gardened there. I moved on, and the peonies are still there.

But today I bought my first peony. And I intend to plant it in the front garden. It feels like the time I ordered my first martini– which was on my 40th birthday. I’ve grown up. And can now be a little dissolute even. Because face it, there’s no more dissolute flower than a peony. Big, blowsy, and fragrant — only tuberoses are more dissolute.


2 thoughts on “New Peony

  1. I don’t do well at transplanting any kind of plant. Fortunately our place has a few really pretty peonies – white and a really old fashioned pale pink one. The neighbor down the street moved, but he gave me a few red ones to transplant. If it hadn’t been for my husband, they wouldn’t have survived. At least they’re coming up. I hope I didn’t plant them too deep????

    Today I posted on my blog a still life image of some peonies I photographed several years ago. You can see the image at

  2. peonies!

    they seem to be the mother of all ant-draws.

    I have some (very large, seemingly very healthy) peony shrubs that look original to the home…built in 1950.

    I’ve sad to hear they don’t take well to transplant, because they MUST go…

    far away from our foundation, wooden beams and kitchen.

    I don’t mind uprooting a hosta (maybe because they don’t seem to mind it, either), but now I know I’ll feel a twinge of remorse when the shovel hits ground for these guys.

    Anyone want some peonies?


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