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Peonies: Lost Forever?

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Page 3 of Peonies: Lost?
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MIKADO, 1893

Japanese-style peonies were unknown in America till ‘Mikado’ caused a sensation when it bloomed en masse at the Japanese exhibit at the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. Its dark, raspberry-red petals surround a tuft of golden staminodes — elegant and unforgettable! Strong stems, 3-5 eye roots, 36-38”, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), from Iowa. Last offered in 2009. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


MINUET, 1931

Although not as famous as its sister ‘Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt’, this rarely offered beauty is just as wonderful. It’s taller than most peonies – perfect for a featured spot or the back of your perennial border – with strong stems and fragrant, rose-shaped flowers of a dreamy apple-blossom pink. Minneapolis-bred by A.B. Franklin, 38-42”, late mid-season, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), 3-5 eyes, from Iowa. Last offered in 2016. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


MISS AMERICA, 1936

So good that it’s won the APS Gold Medal twice, ‘Miss America’ is the standard by which all other semi-double peonies are judged. It’s bee-friendly and highly fragrant, with loads of flowers and plenty of side buds that will extend the radiant display – even in the South. 36”, early mid-season, zones 3a-8a(9aWC), 3-5 eyes, from Iowa. Last offered in 2017. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


MONSIEUR JULES ELIE, 1888

One of only ten lactifloras to win the RHS Award of Garden Merit, this luxurious Victorian is one of the world’s most popular peonies. Even in the South, says guru Felder Rushing, its huge, fragrant blooms are “absolutely dependable.” 3-5 eye roots, 30” mid-season, zones 3a-8a(8bWC), from Iowa. Last offered in 2010. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


MRS. FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT, 1932

The rich fragrance and rose-like form of this APS Gold Medal winner make it distinct in the garden and terrific in bouquets. Opening “like a blush-pink waterlily” (Martin Page), it matures into a graceful, cupped flower of pale, silvery pink. Free-flowering, vigorous, 3-5 eye roots, 30-34”, mid-season, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), from Iowa. Last offered in 2016. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


MYRTLE GENTRY, 1925

Deliciously fragrant, ‘Myrtle’ opens pale pink with hints of cream and apricot before maturing to a creamy almost-white. It was bred in Minnesota (so you know it’s tough) by America’s first family of peonies, the Brands. Strong stems. 3-5 eye roots, 34-36”, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), from Iowa. Last offered in 2016. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


PRAIRIE AFIRE, 1932

This strikingly different, anemone-flowered peony opens its broad outer petals to reveal a mass of narrow, flickering, flame-like petals in deep rose, pink, and yellow. Graceful enough to be embroidered on an Arts-and-Crafts table-runner, it’s another enduring classic from the Brands of Minnesota. 32-36”, late mid-season, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), 3-5 eyes, from Iowa. Last offered in 2017. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


PRESIDENT ROOSEVELT, 1905

Although rarely offered today, this fragrant peony makes such an excellent, long-lasting cut-flower that it’s now being grown by farmers in Alaska for sales to the lower 48 – in July and August! But don’t worry, yours will bloom at the usual time, with bold, informal, waterlily-like flowers laced throughout with golden stamens. Named for Theodore Roosevelt, long before there was any other President Roosevelt. Strong stems, 34-36”, mid-season, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), 3-5 eyes, from Iowa. Last offered in 2014. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


Paeonia officinalis RUBRA PLENA, 1568

Celebrated for its herbal powers by the Greeks and Romans, Paeonia officinalis was grown in colonial gardens long before the P. lactiflora ancestors of most of today’s peonies arrived here from China in the early 1800s. Its early bloom-time – two weeks ahead of standard peonies – and vibrant color made it the classic Memorial Day “piney” of Civil War graveyards. 28-32”, early, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), 3-5 eyes, from Holland. Last offered in 2016. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


SEA SHELL, 1937

Winner of the APS Gold Medal as one of the best peonies ever, ‘Sea Shell’ produces a flurry of big, soft pink, single flowers on sturdy stems, each illuminated by a heart of yellow stamens. 3-5 eye roots, 30-36”, zones 3a-7b(8bWC), from an Iowa nursery that’s been growing peonies since 1887. Last offered in 2008. We offer a rotating selection of peonies. If you’d like to be notified the next time we offer this treasure, sign up for an email alert.


Page 3 of Peonies: Lost?
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