We are in the middle of a hot, Oregon summer. Scorching this week at 108° yesterday and today! Unusual and record breaking heat - I always think it's too hot over about 85°.
I've kept the field peonies moist with irrigation; and, the potted peonies in the nursery are getting watered a couple of times a day, so they don't dry out. It's refreshing to walk under a sprinkler; sometimes I linger there. It's so hot, that I could almost watch my tomatoes turn from green to yellow to orange while I watered the vegetable garden. Really. Tuesday there wasn't a touch of color to them; Wednesday afternoon I picked ripe cherry tomatoes.
The peony plants are beautiful this summer. I let a few develop seed pods, imaging what they may produce down the road. Some are swelling with plump seed and a few have cracked open over the past couple of weeks. Peony seed can take 4 or 5 years to produce a flower; although we've seen a few blossom sooner. Planting peony root cuttings will generally produce flowers in 1 to 2 years, with the plant approaching maturity at 3 years.
The start of something new - planting for the future, is a great thing to look forward to. My sisters and I particularly love it when customers in their 90's are buying peony plants. Some younger folks will say, 'it takes so long for a peony to grow, I don't have that much time'; while others are looking forward to the future and say 'in just a few short years, I'll have glorious flowers to enjoy the rest of my life'. Such anticipation can positively impact our quality of life.
With the hot weather of August, it's kind of hard to believe that digging/planting season will begin in a matter of weeks. But, it's coming.
Plant the peonies - leave a legacy of beauty.