One of the smaller peonies, this is a "species" which apparently has never been found in the wild, but is known only in gardens. Considered by some to have been a rare or possibly extinct plant in the wild, it was brought to the UK in the 19th century from Russia. It is related to Paeonia officinalis, and indeed some botanists classify it as within the range of characteristics of P. officinalis subsp villosa. It's rather distinct looking however. The flower is a true pink as opposed to having some tint of blue in it, and it has wonderful foliage. A good size for a rock garden or a small space. First bloom date here 31 May this year.
After several days of wet weather we were forecast to get sunny breaks today, but by 1pm it hadn't materialized here. So I went off on the bike to find some, heading towards the Annapolis Valley. And there it was, sun at last. It seemed like every householder in the area (except me) was busy cutting back the sudden rush of growth of lawns brought on by the rain, so the scent of the lilacs was overwhelmed by the not unpleasant smell of newly mown grass and weeds. Unfortunately every community seemed to have about one home or business that was burning garbage that was not exclusively wood fibre (including paper and cardboard). So the scent of mown grass was over-ridden by the stench of burnt plastics etc. Department of Environment inspectors no doubt travel in cars with closed windows... not that there are enough of them anyways.
And yes, there was sunshine at home when I got back!