Friday, June 19, 2015

Finally, Peonies!

I've been dreaming of peonies - for more than 30 years,
 since they don't do well in the Med's frontiers, where
  heady jasmine and honeysuckle bloom profusely.

'Sunny side up' Krinkled Whites, looking deliciously sweet.

Their fluffy, silky petals, and squiggly, sunny centres

Blaze Peony

shine brilliantly, even on dark,
 North American rainy days.

Pink Firelight Peonies

And that fragrance...Few scents are as sweet
and refreshingly uplifting, wouldn't you agree?

Over 300 varieties of peonies were on display at the
 11th Annual Peony Festival, in Oshawa Ontario.

Thus, when the city of Oshawa hosts its annual
Peony Festival, people come from far and wide,

travel over land and sea, (like yours truly, 
appropriately clutching a pink cardie, in
 honour of my beloved, bold, pink peony, the
 magnetic and magnificent, Myrtle Gentry!).

Others, living in the near vicinity,
waddle and waltz right in, and being
 very neighbourly, make themselves at home.

For, there is a lot to see, like the many
rows of lovelies in the peony pageantry!

Other pretties will stay forever young,
painted in portraits very complimentary,

while buckets of beauties, soaking their stems,
will be picked for their signature scent, in the end.

Each festival peony was a pure delight for me,
whose perfume still lingers in my memory,

but only one, in particular remains close to my heart,
which was neither a contestant, nor a model for art,

for it arrived in the mail,
 gracing the front of a card,
whose words of friendship and love,
 I hold in the very highest regard.

Thank you, Dewena. And yes, these giant, but
delicate lovelies are, indeed, Festiva Maxima;
 you know your peonies well!

From my brother-in-law's garden, Festiva Maxima peonies perfume the late spring breeze.

Happy weekend, my friends,
 and thanks for visiting!



  1. Gorgeous, gorgeous. I had NO idea there were this many varieties. I think I have 5 var. in my gardens here...I need to remember this festival for another year! your poem and pictures are a true treat! and the card is so special too. Enjoy!

  2. Oh so pretty. I love that yellow one.

  3. Oh how beautiful! Peonies are so amazing, sure wish they could stay a little longer. It never fails we get a torrential downpour the second they bloom, then they are gone............


  4. Gorgeous photos, Poppy! I have loved peonies ever since they grew on either side of the front sidewalk when I was young girl. Mom would always cut some for bouquets and the fragrance was so sweet! I had no idea there were so many to choose from..oh my goodness...and there is no doubt you know your varieties well! Your lovely descriptive poetry just really made this post so much fun! Have a wonderful weekend, Poppy!

  5. Such pretty pics. And what a fab show to go to.

  6. WOW! What beauty! I know you enjoyed the show immensely!

    Gorgeous photos.


  7. Oh Poppy what fun that must of been to visit and see all of those pretty poppies! Have a nice weekend.

  8. Oh Poppy! Here I was enjoying reading of your delightful visit to the peony festival, just imagining that you were in peony heaven, and then to read your words about my card and see its picture there, how very sweet of you, dear friend! And you of course know that I treasure your friendship and love too!

    Your Myrtle Gentry peony is new to me but I followed the link and wow, what a gorgeous lady Myrtle is! Those ruffles, and all the variations of pink in her are feminine perfection in a peony.

    Today R.H. was telling me, as we drove 3 dogs to the vet for their annual vaccinations, about the peony garden at a favorite customer's house. He was amazed that there was a yellow one so I will have to show him that you included a gorgeous one above. Of course, when he told me about seeing the peony garden I asked, Why didn't you get pictures? Now her rose garden is in full bloom and he'll be there next week so he has instructions to take pictures! She has a full-time gardener to help tend her many gardens--wouldn't that be nice?

    Your pictures are extraordinary, Poppy, and I especially love the one of the men and women waist high in peonies. It must have been a little like being in the center of an impressionist painting.

    Love to you,

  9. I just love them, but here in So CA they don't do well. I believe they need to have a frost to make them so beautiful. I believe they are developing one for warmer climates.
    The fair looks so nice to be able to see all those lovely flowers. You must have been in heaven.
    So glad that youa re having a terrific time, enjoy your visit.

  10. What a wonderful festival. I would love to grown peonies, but just too hot here in TX. I have to purchased my bouquets at the market. '-)

  11. Peonies are my favorite flower. I only wish they lasted longer, instead of succumbing to the lightest of rains, which we have had a bit of lately (though nothing like the Midwest). They are at their peak now, and a friend, whose gardens are legendary, has peonies the size of dinner plates. They're a sight to behold!

    Today I went to a lovely park, famous for its rose garden. Reminds me a little of your pictures Poppy. Maybe I'll share them soon.

    Hope your visit is going well my friend!

  12. Wow what a beautiful festival to be at. Love all the different varieties. Love the Canadian geese coming to the show too!

  13. Who knew there were so many varieties of Peonies. The Yellow one is so different. They are lovely flowers.

  14. Those white flowers with the yellow centers: I would bet millions of cookies that they are "Poppies" and Matilija poppies!!!! Please look them up! They are native to California.....they are crinkly...and they are poppies!!!
    I will send you a picture!!!

    1. No! I am wrong! The leaves are different! Otherwise, they are exactly the same flower

    2. No worries, Penelope! I appreciate your research and honesty!

      Happy weekend!


  15. Now you've hit a tender spot: this is the one thing I am missing about the Pacific Northwest. But the Honeysuckle and Jasmine here have been tickling my heartstrings. . .not to mention the monster roses and the lavender. . .I can't complain about missing peonies, now can I? Hugs!

  16. OMG! I love, love peonies and I cannot find them nowhere here in Athens. We have ordered lots of them for my son's wedding in July but I need to know if you have something in mind about peonies plants. Gorgeous photos as always! Kisses Poppy!

  17. So wonderful to see so many amazing and incredibly beautiful peonies!!! They are stunning aren't they! So many different colours and textures of the blooms! Thank you so much for sharing them with us and for taking us along with you. So glad that you got to go!! Your brothers peony is very beautiful too! xx

  18. Hello Poppy, what a lovely festival. I love the peonies, they are beautiful in all the colors. Lovely images! Have a happy weekend!

  19. Gorgeous flowers and the fragrance is truly incredible! Growing up, we had peonies and lilacs which are my absolute favorite flowers! I now live in the desert, where unfortunately, they do not grow, much to my sadness. I, however, will never forget their beauty or scent. Thanks for all the wonderful pictures. Glad you got to enjoy these amazing flowers!

  20. Wow, what beautiful roses !!! I rise after a long time, since my PC was broken and I now have a new pc !!! I wish you a nice weekend, Greetings Angie from Germany

  21. Oh what a nice affair to attend! I adore peonies. Mine are just starting to bloom. I think the white ones have the best smell and wish I could enjoy them for a lot longer. The geese waltzing in are cute! I'm glad you got to enjoy so many nice things while visiting Canada.

  22. oh poppy! i'm breathless with the beauty! and that pink is one of my favorite colors too!!!
    and the perfect phrase from dewena... "like being in the center of an impressionist painting!"
    the last picture... i just want to walk into that beautiful creature! and the ducks! oh how i love the little intruders! LOLOL i'm so happy for your long visit. LOVE and HUGS darling poppy! XOXO♥

    1. UH OH!!! i called the great Canada geese DUCKS!!! shame on me! :)

  23. Wow!! THat must have smelled amazing! Peonies are such an alluring flower. Been thinking about you, how long are you staying here my friend?

  24. Ohhhh! Poppy,
    Such gorgeous flowers! All of the flowers and people are shining, and they must be so happy in the bright day. Peonies with those fragile petals are captivating.
    Happy days!

  25. Hi Poppy,
    Your post is beautiful as it made me smile wide. I love Peonies, our's in Philadelphia bloom in May. I had no idea there are so many varieties. How sweet the Peony on display looks all in the glass bottles roll after roll. Cute photo of you Poppy and yes your sweater matched perfectly. I bet that sweet fragrance will linger in your memories of your fun day.

  26. Peonies are my absolute FAVORITE flower-and what a treat to see all of your lovely photo's! I have mostly pinks in my garden-now I must find a yellow one for next year's bloom!

  27. Peony Festival - how fabulous! They and hydrangeas are my favorite flowers. If I had room in my garden I would have them in every color. My Festiva Maxima's are in full bloom right now and the scent is brilliant! Looks like it was a perfect way to spend a day :)

  28. They are beautiful. They don't grow here either.

  29. Those peonies are so fun that you got to go to a festival celebrating this gorgeous flower! We don't have any in our yard...nowhere left to plant them and hubby never wanted any since they attract ants. I think that last photo with the peony from your BIL's garden, is my favorite. Looks like it's pink AND yellow? So pretty.

  30. Oh, Poppy. How full your heart must be to see this abundance of peonies. I'm so glad they bloomed for your arrival. Gorgeous colors and shapes. Sigh.

  31. Peonies are such a glorious and beautiful flower and they smell oh-so-good :) Mine are just about to bloom....I go out every day to check on them :)

    What a fun festival to go to! I had no idea there were so many varieties of Peonies. Happy weekend, sweet Poppy! Hugs!

  32. Wow! Now that's a lot of flowers...they are just so beautiful. It's like you dropped into a rainbow! I bet it smelled heavenly, too. I love poppies, we used to have a really pretty one in our old yard, but not so much here.

  33. I'd love to go to that peony festival! The scent in the air must be amazing! They surely are a magnificent flower...and your photos are the next best thing to seeing them in person.

  34. Oh Poppy, they are beautiful. :)

    Very sweet post, you are obviously having a fantastic time.

  35. I can only imagine the scent of so many peonies surrounding you ! :)

  36. So many beauties!!! What a neat festival! !

  37. A peony paradise! What bliss to be surrounded by 300 varieties... Where to look, what to capture through photos, why can't I grow all 300??? Thank you for sharing your lovely peony experience! Your photos are awesome. The card is wonderful...a true keepsake!

  38. How beautiful to see all those peonies in one place. I'm glad you got to enjoy them. Our daughter's in-laws live in Oshawa but we've never been there. Have a wonderful weekend Poppy!

  39. I love peonies too, in fact I just planted one in my garden, and hope it'll bloom next year.
    What a lovely fragrant way to spend the day, at a Peony Festival.

  40. Poppy,
    I love peonies, I suppose besides the hydrangea they are my favorite, but they struggle to survive in this climate. I had no idea that peonies came in such a variety of colors, growing up in Idaho Mom grew burgundy red and pink. What a lovely day you had and I am very happy for you that you are enjoying your time being nurtured by family and friends.
    Have a lovely Monday dear Poppy,
    With love,

  41. Poppy, sou apaixonada por peônias.

    Aqui no Brasil eu nunca as vi.

    Quando estive em Londres, comprei um maço encanto.

    Como eu gostaria de estar nesse festival...Suas fotos são maravilhosas.

    Que passeio agradável, lindo, colorido, perfumado!!

    Grata por compartilhar...

    beijinhos, tenha uma semana bem bonita!

    Lígia e =^.^=

  42. I love peonies but hubs won't let me grow them since they attract ants! They are really quite a beautiful flower, and very elegant looking.What a wonderfuf festival and it does sound and look like you are having fun.

  43. How lovely! And how silly of me to have fallen out of regular visits to your blog (and others) over the past while. I visited the Peony Festival on the Saturday. What a treat it would have been to have spotted you there, Poppy.

  44. They are wonderful Poppy! We have some peonies in our small garden but they have consistently failed to flower. I shall have to try moving them (yes, I know, they don't like to be moved but it is a desperate measure). If they still refuse to flower, they will have to be re-homed. Thank you for sharing your lovely images.

  45. A paradise of peonies, indeed! Amazing in all sizes and textures...and colors! I love peonies so much!
    May you have a beautiful sunny summer! Warm greetings, now and always!

  46. Wow a sea of beautiful flowers, I love how many unique looks they have, looks like a wonderful day out enjoying all that beauty!

  47. Just beautiful! Thanks for joining Home Sweet Home!

  48. Hi, Poppy! I'm new to your blog, but I'm feeling right at home. What a beautiful place you have here! I look forward to visiting often. I've never smelled nor seen peonies in person. Isn't that a shame? Do they survive in zone 7? I would love to have some in my yard if they would survive our heat.

    Nice to meet you! Dear Dewena told me about you!

  49. I always thought I didn't like pageants, but a peony pageant seems intersting!

  50. Oh so lovely! What a visit! Beautiful dear...
    War summerhug,

  51. What fun and isn't the painting gorgeous! it would sure make a statement in the entry of a home. Enjoy your week sweet friend. Hugs, Diane

  52. The Peonies are glorious and their colours and textures always remind me of those little flowers I made my mother out of tissues and then I placed them in her hair and would say. "Mumzie, I made a Peony flower just for you" ;) My friend Janet who has now passed away would bring me a bouquet every Spring at church. They would be placed in a simple glass jar with a lovely ribbon tied around it. Oh I do love Peonies and this year I had none, but hopefully after being transplanted and out of shock, they shall bloom again next year. These are all so beautiful, thank you Poppy~ Hugs

  53. So pretty, Poppy. I don't think they really grow around us at least not very successfully. I planted them at my last house and the bloom would always face the ground. Drooping in other words. You sure have some amazing pictures.

  54. I love peonies, too. So lush and gorgeous. The scent there must have been heavenly!

  55. Pretty festival, wonderfull flowers, greeting from Belgium with a hot weather!

  56. Beautiful flowers, I think they smell like roses. I found your blog through 'A Frugal Pantry'. I'm a new Follower. Are you living in Crete at the moment? I am watching the Greek news quite closely, I feel so sorry for the residents of Greece for how they are struggling.

  57. They're such beauties, our daughter's favorite.
    I saw you over at Tammy's (Peanut on the Table) and couldn't resist a fresh serving of color. :)
    Always so good visiting with you, Poppy.

  58. I only had a few peony blooms this year - I think the exceptionally cold winter here has affected many of our plants. Now we have daily temps. in the high 90's and everything is fried - gardening in North Carolina is hard!
    Are you still in Canada Poppy? I'm just back from my home town in England (and a few days in London) and I had such a great time. There's just no place like home!

    Hope to see you back here soon - take care.
    Hugs - Mary

  59. Dear Poppy,

    Such a beautiful post on the peony which is such a gorgeous flower. Loved seeing all your photos and thanks for showing us. Also enjoyed seeing the cute ducks waddling along.
    Hope you have a lovely week

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