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Peony recommendations for shared bed with roses

Posted by sushine 5 Central PA (My Page) on
Mon, Jan 19, 09 at 16:23


I would like to incorporate several peonies into a bed that I plan to create this summer. My vision is to have a continuous show of flowers on the corner of my lot near the sidewalk that passersby can enjoy.

The area receives full sun all day and is about 10 feet from the street. It is also near the bottom of a hill right at the swale between property lines. Water does not pond here, but with the lush green growth habit of my lawn in this area, I'd say that it gets plenty of water while being well-drained.

In this bed, I will also be planting 'Bonica' and 'The Fairy' roses. I would like the peonies to bloom early in the season, letting the roses take center stage once summer kicks in.

I think I prefer single or semi-double peonies which would require minimal staking.

Do you have any recommendations for which peony varieties might satisfy these constraints?

Do roses and peonies typically work well when planted side by side?

Thank you so much for your time!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Peony recommendations for shared bed with roses

Peonies and roses work well together here.
Staking peonies is not difficult: make a cylinder of old farm fencing, 1 ft high x 2 ft diameter, and put around the plant; leave it there year after year.
Bonica and The Fairy are good choices; we have the species virginiana and glauca mixed with peonies; the Buck roses, Earth Song and Country Dancer, would also be good choices for central Pa.

RE: Peony recommendations for shared bed with roses

Sunshine, its nice that you wish to have the area you plan for the peonies offer color for passerbys. We all like to display our gardens.

But, there is a big "but" want a plant that gives ...using your term..."continuous" color.
Unfortunately peony is not a plant to give any kind of what is termed 'continueous' unless two weeks is good enough to satisfy that length of time.
Two weeks --give or take--is what the plant offers.

Now roses...that's a different story. So if you can be satisfied with two weeks bounty, then peony will work.

Not to diminish what you plan in that area, how about planting a different variety of rose. Hedge roses work very well. Tulips, can survive in color for 3, 4 or 5 weeks, depending on variety.
Hydrangea is another possibility.

RE: Peony recommendations for shared bed with roses

For spring color, I like my red-flowering current (Ribes sanguinium) and my Darwin's barberry. Peonies are lovely, but not long lasting; though one mixed in to help with greenery would be nice.

RE: Peony recommendations for shared bed with roses

I used Shirley Temple in my sidewalk bed because I both like that particular peony but more importantly because it is a shorter variety and I didn't want to stake it up there. I am also in zone 5 and I have a Fairy in back. From the looks of the two this spring, Shirley Temple will probably bloom just before The Fairy starts which would be a nice combination for you.

Hope that helps!

RE: Peony recommendations for shared bed with roses

Thank you, Diana-- this is exactly the kind of information I was hoping to receive! I'll see if I can find a Shirley Temple peony locally available.

Thank you again!

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