" ... the sheen of a peony in bud, not yet opened to the heat of the day but with the dew of the morning upon it still. A peony, cool and close, looking down upon the lush grass from some terraced border, and later, at high noon, the petals unfolding to the sun." - Daphne du Maurier
Peonies are regal flowers originating from China. They are hardy and longlived plants that can individually live to be a hundred years old. At Plas Cadnant this beautiful cerise coloured peony came in to bloom from a darker wine coloured bud in May. It is an ideal representation of a 'feminine' flower that reminds us of all the layers over a crinoline, a blousy bomb.
For me, this peony is vastly complicated in both bud and bloom form. In the bud the petals are tightly packed, pressed and folded to ensure their petals will open in to the delicate waves. The bloom mimics the rounded shape of the bud but dramatically increases in size. By increasing size it dominates the borders but also begins to display a greater sense of fragility, beauty and intricacy.