Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Peony Season Officially Comences here (meanwhile in Edmonton...)

Yesterday afternoon (a gorgeous sunny cycling +23C afternoon!) the buds were still tight and showing no more colour than in the photos of 2 days ago. This morning, P. tomentosa the Woolly Peony was a yellow ball but not yet open, but by mid-afternoon the sun (although cooler than yesterday) had worked its magic and the first flower was open. 10 days ahead of 2006, 21 days ahead of 2007 (that's according to the previous entries in this blog).

In other good news on the tomentosa front, seedlings of this species are up so in a year or two I will once again be selling this species.

Meanwhile, P. mairei also opened after having had nicely coloured buds for several days (20 days ahead of 2007). However, we can see in the photos that these have some frost damage from the last snow day, more from the temperatures than from the snow itself; this probably retarded the opening of the buds by a few days. The frost damage is apparent in asymetrical petal shapes and in the outer rings of dead anthers (more noticable in the semi-open flower). Stigmas are very small too, as can be seen vaguely in comparison with the 2007 photo.

Glaucidium palmatum also opened over the weekend; this is considered by some botanists to be a member of the Peony family, although a different Genus. Horticulturally I find few similarities, but my analysis is only skin deep.

Meanwhile my sister in Edmonton posted photos of yesterday's wet snowfall which looks close to 5" deep... Strangely, if I recall correctly (and there's no guarantee of that!) Edmonton was having about +20C temperatures in sun during the last wintery blast here.


Denis Wilson said...

Hi Leo
Do you think that the trend towards earlier flowering is a sign of Global Warming?
Nice plants, by the way.
I have just about given up on Species. Just seems to be the wrong climate or soil, bu the modern hybrids love it here.
Go Figure.

Leo said...

Hi Denis,
Well, it could be, but I've really only been watching these species for about 5 years so the statistics are dodgey at best. For now all I can say is it is a sign of earlier spring or milder winters.