Woman with trowel: Peonies, rhododendron and roses in bloom


Paeonia suffruticosa ‘High Noon’. Photo credit: M. Brehaut.

What a cool spring! But let’s have a look and see what’s happening in my garden…

First mention, and they have already bloomed, are the tree peonies. I have three Paeonia suffruticosa ‘High Noon’ that bloomed their droopy heads off this year. My husband describes them as blowsy and slightly drunken, and he says this with affection. I have them under tall obelisks that protect them from the wind and rain as they are vulnerable to both while in bloom. I like the foliage of the plants, which extends their season for me. They are relatively trouble free and the blooms just make me smile.

Rhododendron ‘Lemon Dream.’ Photo credit: M. Brehaut.

My smallish rhododendron ‘Lemon Dream’ has opened up. The plant itself has a nice shape and I like the soft yellow blooms – they transform from pillowy pods into delicate petals. I have it in part shade and that seems to suit it. Vine weevils take their toll on the leaves and currently I am just living with that.

‘My Meredith’ is a recently registered rose. As a birthday gift to me, my husband bid for the right to name the mini-flora at a Van Dusen benefit last fall. Brad Jalbert of Select Roses donated the roses. As you can see, they are blooming and are glorious – shiny thick leaves and a quiet but pleasing scent. The buds start out quite red, move to coral and fade with yellow in the center. I love them.

Rosa ‘My Meredith.’ Photo credit: M. Brehaut.

We have a Corokia cotoneaster in a pot on the back deck and it is set to bloom. It’s a dark and wiry little thing and I love the shape of it and the shadows it creates. The blooms are a bonus. They surprise me each spring as the buds are small and I always miss them – then suddenly, tiny bits of star shaped yellow.

Corokia cotoneaster. Photo credit: M. Brehaut

Small fruit apparently follow but I have not had them on my shrub. I move that pot indoors for the winter as I have lost corokia in the past and am done with that.

While the roses will flower throughout the summer, the others have just a week or two of splendor and then that’s it for blooms. I learn to stop and enjoy the sight of them as they visit. Life moves along at a stunning pace and as hard as that is to accept, it’s still no reason not to revel in all that it offers us.

What’s blooming in your garden?

Last modified: June 7, 2012

3 Responses to " Woman with trowel: Peonies, rhododendron and roses in bloom "

  1. julia says:

    Your husband is very sweet. I live for romantic things and your rose is just lovely. Wondering if you know why sometimes I buy peonies and they don’t open, and end up dying in a ball, while other times they pop open and make me happy.

  2. Meredith says:

    Sometimes peonies are reluctant to bloom – here is a checklist of common reasons:

    Additionally, if you are trying to grow herbaceous peonies in pots:

    In direct experience, I find my in ground tree peonies bloom well, but I have had mixed success with my potted herbaceous peonies. One of them blooms yearly, and the other is not blooming for me this year – I think I will move it to a bigger pot and see if that helps. It would do better in ground, but I don’t have a sunny enough spot available. Good luck with yours!

  3. Judi Wilson says:

    Julia is very perceptive 🙂