chinese herbaceous peonies-newbie question

margloJuly 4, 2013

I am starting a cutting garden with 5 peonies. I find myself drawn to the chinese plants (eg at Cricket Hill or PeonysEnvy). Is there any down side to going with the Chinese varieties, instead of American hybrids?

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I don't have any Chinese peonies, looked at both of the companies you mentioned, they looked pretty. I did a search here on the peony forum of older strings, a lot of the Chinese peonies got fairly poor reviews. Do you know of anyone growing them in gardens in your area? I think I'd go by advice of people growing them in like climates. Are there specific named plants that you're most interested in? Maybe you can do a search on those specific names, I think a fair number were mentioned by name in some posts here.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 11:50PM
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Hi Marglo!

I would love to help you out with this...Peonies originated from China and Japan and the most common type of peony is Actually a Chinese peony although it is not named as such anymore. Peony's Envy does a terrific job of using the Chinese names of peonies that also have English names...So, for example, one farm may have the same peony with an English name instead of the Chinese name.

To help you out a bit...there are some important characterizations between peonies and I would like to show you this link:

We are a new farm, similar to Peony's Envy (although we grow our flowers chemical free).

On that page you'll see that there are 3 different kinds of plant/bush types (Herbaceous (common), Tree (much less common) and ITOH (a hybrid between the two...

Then there are 5 types of blooms: one of them being a Japanese bloom which is a really different type of peony (the rest are double, semi-double, single, and 'bombs')

The Japanese peonies are also known as the 'Imperial Peonies'.

Chinese (or Common) Peonies can be Herbaceous, Tree, ITOH etc.

Herbaceous need the most amount of sun and tree/itohs can tolerate more diverse weather (shade).

Please sign up for our news letter as we detail often planting instructions for beds and have frequent sales!

Here is a link that might be useful: Pure Peonies

    Bookmark   July 12, 2013 at 5:37AM
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