Peonies - A Photo Gallery of Peonies in Gardens
The Beautiful Peony Flower
I have often heard the peony be referred to the Mother's Day Flower near where I live in the Midwest. It seems the blooms open right on or around Mother's Day each year. Its something I look forward to as they are such a lovely flower.
There are a few different versions of the mythology surrounding the peony. Some say the flower is named after Paeon. Paeon was a physician to the gods, supposedly, and he was given a peony from the mother of Apollo. It was presented atop Mount Olympus. I love hearing about these neat mythological stories and how they tie into things like this.
There is another version of a story in mythology where the same physician, Paeon, was saved from dying as other mortals. The way in which he was saved from dying was by becoming the flower we know today as the peony. Either way, they are neat stories and it shows us at the very least that the people highly valued peonies over the years.
Did you know these basic facts about peonies? Peonies are known as the flower to represent riches and honor. Peonies also happen to be the 12th Wedding Anniversary flower! It is said of the bloom, that it represents romance, and prosperity. It is also known to be an omen for good luck. It is supposed to be good luck for marriage as well, to bring happiness. More traditionally, it is the floral symbol for China. As far as United States state flowers, Indiana has chosen the peony as theirs.
Pictures of Peonies
Photo 1 - This is one of my favorite shots because it shows the flower so close up. This is what all those bees are going after, that I often see flying near peonies. For those that don't like bees, no worries. Even when I was trying to get in close, very close with my camera, it never phased them. They are on a mission and don't mind as long as you don't bother them. I love the creamy pink color of this bloom, and the bright yellow center.
Photo 2 - Several light pink peonies growing all together. Sometimes my peony plants get taller than this, but they are in a bit more shade. This also requires more staking of peonies, the taller they are.
Photo 3 - This shows an example of the creamy colored peony. Its almost a light yellow but more cream colored than anything. I love the contrast of these white ones to the pink and darker pink peonies.
Photo 4 - I liked this photo because it shows how nicely the plants do along a sunny garden path. Mind you, these are not in their full blown blooming stage yet, but you can get an idea based on those couple plants blooming there. They seemed to plant the pinks and darker pinks intermittently. It has a lovely effect.
Photo 5 - Another light pink peony. Simple beauty that is eye catching, in my opinion.
Photos 6 - This is a more tightly closed bud that is simply beautiful to me. Often one can see ants crawling on the peonies in this stage. I have heard differing views on the ants. I have been told to not worry about the ants as they are actually helpful to peonies in their opening up. That sounds like a fair enough reason to leave them alone. On the other hand though, some say they don't help the flower open up so much, but they also don't hurt the flower. There is something there that is attractive to the ants, but they aren't hurting the flower to be there. So you have to decide. My thought is when in doubt, don't use pesticides because of all the beneficial insects you can kill as well. Its just extra chemicals for all around including you.
Photo 7 - The darker shade of pink peony, or hot pink, as I like to call it sometimes. What an absolutely stunning color, in my opinion. This may be my favorite color, but only in conjunction with the other lighter colors for contrast.
From experience, I have found that peonies make a great cut flower if they are in a vase that can support them. They are lovely in the house too and can help take off some of the weight of the plant so they don't all fall down under their own weight.
A beautiful quote I came across:
"Nature gives us gifts that never need unwrapping - like strawberry patches and peony petals, the scent of roses and freshly cut grass." Author Unknown