Below we see bed 2 in the rear and bed 4 in the foreground. The pink (single bloom) in the front row is 'Mary Pratte' , to the right 'Moonrise' ,and to the left just about to open is 'George Vorauer'. In left foreground is 'Claude Barrow' a lactiflora which needs a few more days to open.
Bed C2 is our newest bed just 2-3 years old.
Show weekend June 6 & 7 has now arrived and it's Sunday afternoon at the farm. My tour for the CPS members is nearing the end and I have time to take a few pictures. Below, you will recognize most of them. Shall I say the usual suspects? It's always a delight to give a tour to knowledgeable people. I try to let them do the talking. There's always some new information or story told by someone as we view each variety.
This is bed C2 and in the foreground right is 'Haleigh's Hallelujah'. A bloom from this plant picked three days before won Best in Show. Timing is everything on show day. To the left is 'Haleigh's Comet' a similar looking plant.
Below, the group has moved on to bed C1 and discussions are continuing.
A clearer shot of bed C1 taken from the opposite end is shown below. The plants are mainly lactifloras and you can see that many have now opened but not all.
And not to leave anyone out, above we have a serious discussion, and another below. The scarlet bloom in the foreground 4th plant in is 'Command Performance', 5th in is 'Norwegian Blush' an Itoh and 6th is 'Donna Jean'. The red directly behind is 'Scarlet Haven' an Itoh and at the left edge is 'Coral Magic'
Above, I've made my way back to bed 12 now looking south you see it in full bloom. The public flocks to the beds at bloom time , with their cameras. The dark red bloom at the front is 'Night Watch'.
Below is 'Little Dorrit' a tiny and unique Saunders plant with blooms an orange/pink colour very much faded here.
And for comparison one week later, a shot of our circular beds on show weekend. We see more blooms as the lactifloras are starting to open.
Below is the other half. Compare the start of bed 4 in the mid distance with the picture taken the week before. The first one is 'Claude Barrow' last week in tight bud stage and now pink blooms. Next is 'George Vorauer' previously in opening bud stage and now fully open red blooms.
Finally another week later June 13th and it's our "Peony Walkabout" at the gardens. We provide a short tour for the public and answer questions. Below are the same two shots. Note how much more full of bloom the beds are.
The beds are at their peak, but the biggest change was in the the air, which was now full of the scent of "grandma's peonies" the lactifloras. The Itohs and the hybrids can't match the lactifloras in that. Together they give us five plus weeks of bloom.
That's all folks. The end.