Peony: the flower and its cultivation

Peony: the flower and its cultivation

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Peony, the only genus of the family of Peoniaceae (Paeoniaceae), however, is used to indicate as many as 33 species of perennial herbaceous plants. There are the more shrubs, and the lesser ones, often have very rich and colorful blooms. Not to mention the perfume. In fact the Peony it is seen above all as an ornamental plant, in gardens, in flower beds or even in pots on terraces or in squares and open spaces.

Horticultural varieties, whether they have single or double flower, whatever color they have, are required and industrially cultivated to then have the cut flower. This garden star overexposure obscures them medicinal properties of this plant which are not negligible.

Peony: meaning

In Japan it is considered the Dragon Food but the name of the Peony derives from Greek doctor of the Paeon gods that according to Homer healed Pluto with this plant. More etymologically speaking, the hypothesis is that it comes from the Greek word "paionia" feminine of "paionios" (greet-rescuer): a reference perhaps to the fact that the roots of the plant have medicinal properties. Beyond the name, this flower is closely linked with the feeling of love and couple, in fact it is often used on the occasion of weddings: with the peony we celebrate the 12th wedding anniversary for example.

In Chinese tradition, it helps men and women to live together in harmony: when you are looking for a faithful companion, the advice is to put a painting or a vase of peony in the southwest corner of the bedroom. This will either attract the ideal partner or keep the marriage happy. Contraindications only for older couples who may instead find themselves having to deal with extra-marital relationships with younger women.

In particular, if the flower is white, the Peony it symbolizes the virginal purity of the girls, while if red it represents eroticism. In Japan there are many paintings but also many haiku poems dedicated to this flower, dating back to the 1700s.

Peony: the flower

There Peony it has deciduous leaves and large and very colorful flowers. As for the fruits, they are not sure what you notice the most but they contain very large dark seeds. All the species used for ornamental purposes can be divided into two groups, the first of the herbaceous and then that of the woody or arboreal: shrubs.

Herbaceous peonies are those derived from the European P. officinalis and they have fragrance-free flowers. In the same group also the derivatives of P. lactiflora, originally from Siberia, which instead has pink-scented flowers and colors ranging from white to red. In the second group there are coming species from China and Japan, rustic and fairly easy to grow, very resistant to summer drought and generous in spring blooms.

Both groups are present in scattered areas here and there throughout the northern hemisphere. In Europe we find them in the southern and eastern areas, in "isolated spots" North Africa, in North America only on the Pacific side, while in Asia the Peony depopulates in Siberia, China, Japan and the Himalayas and throughout Asia Minor.

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Paeonia Officinalis: healing properties

If the meanings of this flower have already left us speechless, the medicinal properties will not disappoint us. Already in ancient times the root of Peony according to folk medicine, it favored the loss of teeth in children and was the basis for the treatment of epilepsy, headaches, states of agitation and anxiety.

While in Japan flowers are consumed as vegetables, they are used all over the world in the preparation of homeopathic and herbal remedies. They are attributed to the Peony sedative, antispasmodic, antiallergic, anticonvulsive and anti-inflammatory properties.

Among the pathologies treated there are fissures, hemorrhoids, dysentery, muscle cramps, tachycardia, muscle spasms. It is also an excellent presence for people who suffer from anxiety, stress, excessive excitement. The active ingredients contained in this plant are tannin, cellulose, phosphoric acid, oxalates, starch, alkaloid, paenol and paeoniflorina.

Peony: cultivation

Beautiful and with such an explosive and engaging flowering, not to mention the important meanings for the most romantic: yet the plants of Peony, strange but true, they are easy to grow. It is important that they enjoy full sun or half shade exposure and that the soil that hosts them is well fertilized with organic substances, neutral or slightly acidic and free of limestone.

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The reproduction process takes place at the end of autumn, by division of the old tufts, while sowing is little used since it requires long care times and cultivation. When implanting a Peony it is necessary not to overlap too much with the roots of other plants because even if it is not huge it has every right to have room for growth and flowering. Speaking of growth, the Peony in shrubby version it can grow up to one and a half meters in height, while for the herbaceous one the maximum is 60 cm or 1 meter.

Peony in vase

Given the meaning and properties of the Peony, and that it is not that difficult to make it bloom, we can give ourselves one, or even more, chance to have this beautiful and symbolic flower at home for a few euros. Even if we don't have a garden, we arrange it in a pot by planting these 20 Blue Peony seeds.

Peony: price

Looking at the conditions - useful and beautiful results, not zero but not exaggerated effort - it Peony it's a good choice even for non-experts. And looking for seeds online, even for the stingy, provided the stingy love flowers and don't consider them a waste. Here is another possible supply of seeds, always for a few euros. And this time there are 6 seeds but of "Suffruticosa" peony, a name that promises well.

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Video: How to Grow Peonies - Growing Peonies in your Garden! (August 2022).