Cricket Hill Garden
Paeonia lactiflora, Grandmother Celine's Pink peony
Notable characteristics: Many gardeners have fond memories of their grandmother’s peonies. Some are even lucky enough to have divisions of those very plants thriving in their own garden decades later. That is the story of this peony. Kathleen Furman’s mother, Celine had a lifelong love of gardening which she carried with her from her childhood in rural Poland, to her teenage years on the Canadian prairie and finally to her home of many decades on 2 well-manicured acres in the suburbs of New Haven, CT. A star of her late spring garden was a long row of dark pink double herbaceous peonies which lined the driveway leading up to the house. These had come from a nearby florist who had grown them for cut flowers. The grower had decided to sell the field where these were grown to developers, and Stanley, Celine’s husband and a friend of the grower, rescued them from the bulldozer. We have grown this plant out for many years and are pleased to finally have in a quantity where we can share it with others.
Dark pink crown double blossoms are one of the last herbaceous peonies to bloom in our garden, generally opening around June 10th and lasting about a week. Flowers have a dense, sweet spicy fragrance redolent of sandalwood. We have been unable to ascertain the true identity of this heirloom cultivar.
This plant has been sold in previous years under the name 'Celine.'
Species, place of origin: Paeonia lactiflora,
Growth habit and size at maturity : Grows to 28-30" tall and wide.
Flower form and size: Crown double, 6" upright blossoms borne on strong stems.
Flower fragrance: Strong, very sweet scent. If you love scented peonies, choose this one!
Bloom time: Late-season herbaceous peony, blooms in our USDA zone 6a garden in the second week of June.
Zone hardiness: Proven in USDA zones 4-8.
Plant size: 4-5 'eyes' or buds with proportional roots.
When we ship: Fall 2023