January 29, 2020

Festive to the Max

Paeonia lactiflora 'Festiva Maxima'

Faith Pineo Photo | Paeonia lactiflora ‘Festiva Maxima’

Few flowers have the power to stun quite like Paeonia lactiflora ‘Festiva Maxima.’ Since 1851, this white double – with its deep flecks of magenta – has been a standard in many gardens. Growing to 36 inches in height, this herbaceous peony is a reliable, enthusiastic bloomer. And since they are hardy to Zone 3, they should grow well across Maine. The plant pictured has been growing somewhere in Maine for a number of decades, probably close to 70 years, in fact. It has been growing in Garden Maine’s grandmother’s yard since early in her married days, and a number of plants were divided moved 100 miles away to Garden Maine’s beds about a decade ago. Yes, it is a tough-as-nails variety that is also a stunning beauty, the best qualities of any plant.