May 25, 2020

Garden ‘Highlight’

Paeonia lactiflora 'Highlight'

Janine Pineo Photo - Paeonia lactiflora 'Highlight'

Peony enthusiasts take their plant culture seriously. Oftentimes, you will see dates and names attached to particular varieties to show when the flower was introduced and who did the introducing. Paeonia lactiflora ‘Highlight’ is one such variety. It is a double, dark red, dating to 1952 and one Mr. Edward Auten Jr., who was a well-known peony breeder. Mr. Auten was from Princeville, Ill., where he had fields of peonies. Click here for a picture of the man with his favorite cultivar, Nippon Gold, beside one of those fields.

Peony Fact of the Day: According to “The Language of Flowers,” those superstitious folks of yesteryear believed the following: “Peonies were said to shriek so horribly as they were uprooted that anyone nearby would die.” Therefore, humans thought to tie a dog to the plant and let the dog pull it up.