“The fattest and most scrumptious of all flowers, a rare fusion of fluff and majesty, the peony is now coming into bloom.”
–Henry Mitchell, American writer (1923-93)
The peonies blooming in the garden this May prove how accurate Henry Mitchell’s quote is. Planted in full sun, given room to grow and flourish, my five plants are scrumptious this year. I am determined to ignore all advise which says that peonies do not like to be moved. I fell for that line once before. Out of respect for this plant’s preference, I walked off and left peonies in my last garden. I leaned a lesson the hard way when a phone call from a friend reported the following scene. Driving by the house she saw several men digging up the herbaceous bed where I’d left those peonies; most of the bed already cleared. My friend jumped out of the car in high dungeon asking, “What do you think you’re doing?” Their reaction was far from apologetic. “The lady of the house wants to plant roses here.”
So when it comes time to move house the end of May I intend to take MY peonies. With any luck I can fool them into believing that the couple of hours they will be out of the ground is only a brief inconvenience. When you look at the photographs I have included, I hope you will grant me leniency for digging and moving this rare fusion of fluff and majesty because I can’t bare to leave them behind!
“Had I but four square feet of ground at my disposal, I would plant a peony in the corner and proceed to worship.”
–Alice Harding, The Book of the Peony