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Friday, May 17, 2013

Where have all the peonies gone?

In my last entry here on Blogger, I departed from my "usual" rhetoric of giving voice to the array of birds that visit the "things" which grow in my urban (NYC) garden (the garden pictured above in an aerial view taken by Juan V exactly one week and one day ago), to offer a "report" on Bike New York's Five Boro Bike Tour.

Today, I return to my "normal" content, and so much has happened since my last recollections of "garden events" (which I have chronicled in detail in a five part series of posts here on Blogger that began on April 26th 2013 and ended on May 2nd 2013). You may refer to this series by clicking on the various links for part one, part two, part three, part four and part five.

In terms of "happenings" in Juan V's image, there have been significant changes in the "lives" of the "things" which grow in my garden, including the fate of my Paeonia suffruiticosa's  (Tree Peony) — whose awesome white flowers can be seen in the lower right hand corner of Juan's image — fate.
But, dear reader, bear with me, and please let me back tract: As you may recall, my Tree Peony had a rough start re blooming this 2013 season, which was due to the chaotic onset (temperature wise) of spring. However, she ultimately produced nine gorgeous flowers and eight of them can be seen in the photograph posted below,

while details of a couple of the flowers are highlighted in the following images.

Like a proud parent with zillions of photo-ops of their child or pet, I took a huge number of pictures of these "babies," and the images above are only a mere fraction of the ones I took of my Tree Peony when she gave birth!

Therefore — because the Tree Peony had such a rough start to spring — when I heard that heavy rains were predicted to fall throughout the night of the day that she gave birth, I opted to bring her inside, as seen (partial view) in the picture below.

Admittedly a shrub such as this is not meant to be indoors, but I had no way of sheltering her from the elements which would knock off her hard earned petals.  

The heavy rains lasted for two days, so she remained inside with me and went back outside when Juan V carried her there the same day he took the picture atop today's entry.

However, the rain returned that night, knocking off the majority of her petals as seen in the following photographs.

And as of the night before last, my Tree Peony's flowers looked like this,

revealing a very short (nine days) "go round" for the 2013 season.

It is a sad truth about gardening: "things" can have very short-lived "go rounds" in the spring and summer seasons, even if "they" have survived the winter with the "help" of the thorough winterizing that Juan V and I do.

I guess the morale of this "story" is for me to appreciate living "things" while they are in my midst, which is a "lesson" my Continus Coggygria (Smoke Bush),the shrub has mastered. Her burgundy colored foliage can be seen directly behind my Tree Peony in Juan V's aerial image.

I mention shrubs appreciating shrubs based on the following pictures. In them you can see that as my smoke bush looked downward, her burgundy foliage seemed enamored with the tree peony's flowers, and it appears that she was prompted to call upon her "colleague," the Avellana corylus (Contortedhazelnut) — the one with the "crinkly" leaves to the right of the smoke bush — to join her in taking a look at the awesome white peonies!

And when the peonies lost their petals to the rain, the smoke bush looked as if it were offering her strokes of comfort as seen below.

And there you have it: the answer to the question raised in the title of today's post (Where have all the peonies gone?)

How about you, dear reader, what has your experience been with peonies?

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