Thursday, May 25, 2006

A close Peony relative- Glaucidium palmatum

Looking back in time by several days to Glaucidium palmatum. Native to a few of the islands of Japan in thickets and woodlands of mountainous areas. Except for the leaf shape which is more like some Podophyllums (Mayapples) or Maples, it is similar to peonies in effect and habits (some botanists include it in family Paeonaceae, others in Ranunculaceae (Buttercups)); others place it in a family of its own. Rated hardy to USDA zone 4 in some references, and is finally doing okay for me here. Doesn't take as long to flower from seed as the rest of the Peonies, a mere 3 years as opposed to 5 to 7 -- or even more.

A quiet plant with nice foliage, clump-forming and from 1 to 2 feet tall although still short (around 6 inches) when flowering here. Flowers opened at about the same time as Paeonia tomentosa, 14 May and by today only a few tattered petals are hanging on. It comes in 3 main colours: lavender, white and pink.


Denis Wilson said...

Nice photos, especially at the "large" size. One of them appears to be both blue and white. Are they consistent in colours, and it is just 2 plants growing close together?

Leo said...

No such luck as to be on one plant-- it's 2 about 3" apart in a nurse bed (about 8 more in the group too but only the one white).