This is the week I look forward to most every year. Usually occurring right around Mother's Day, we are a bit late this year. No matter. The show is just as spectacular. Ants have been doing their busy job of eating away at the membranes that cover the flower buds, and on cue, as soon as the ants vacate, the buds open. This plant is the years first. Situated in a large mound garden that just experienced a severe burning of ornamental grass, I was hesitant to count on its survival. But Peonies are sturdy plants, tolerating the intense heat of a burn, and the frigid lower temperatures we have been experiencing in the Ohio River Valley the past few nights.
This plant is two shades of pink, with alternating layers. The outside is an intense deep fuchsia, with pale pink layers inside, and another shoot of fuchsia taller petals in the very center. It is truly remarkable.
I am always stunned by the sheer number of petals that fit inside of a Peony bud. It seems an impossible feat of nature.
Here is the first fully open Peony of the Spring. This may be the most layered and large flower I have seen in the Peony gardens, and with no rain in the weeks forecast, they should remain as beautiful as ever.