Friday Flowers!

Well, maybe this week it’s more like Saturday flowers.  Peonies are worth the wait!

Last weekend a friend asked me, “Which is your favorite flower?”  This is a difficult question, in April I would surely have said daffodils, but here we are coming into June and the peony is my obvious favorite.

Here’s a description of peonies from flowerstories.net.

The Peony flower is among the longest-used flowers in ornamental culture. It is a traditional floral symbol of China, where it is called (mu-dan). In 1903, the Qing Dynasty declared the peony as the national flower.

Peonies have been cultivated in Asia for more than a thousand years. Requiring such careful cultivation, they were flowers that only the rich could afford to grow in Japan. Therefore the peony symbolizes prosperity for the Japanese.

With their beautiful fragrance and symbolism of prosperity, it is no surprise that peonies are popular for bridal bouquets.  For me, part of the appeal of a June wedding was the availability of white peonies for my bouquet!

Peonies are available in light pink, dark pink and white.  There are also many variations within these color families.  Peonies are among the more expensive flowers you will find at the farmers market.  Be prepared to pay anywhere from $3-$4 per stem.  It is ideal to buy peonies when they are in the “marshmallow” stage.  Full buds with closed petals that feel slight spongy to the touch are ideal!

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