Past to Present: The Peony

As spring draws near, it is always a good idea to learn more about the plants in your garden. One of the first flowers to bloom in spring is the peony, it carries a rich history and has many fun facts associated with it!

The History of the Peony

Peonies have been reported to date back to 1000BC in China, and quickly spread to Japan who is a major producer of peony today. In the early 1800s, the peony was first brought to Europe. They were used for medicinal practices, as the peony’s seeds and roots could be used to treat headaches, asthma, and pain associated with childbirth. Fast forward to today, peonies are prevalent in most gardens around the world, and are Britain’s most popular summer flower!

Tips for Growing Peonies

Peonies thrive in areas that receive either full sunlight or partial shade and have good air circulation. Once your plants have been moved outside, it is important to note that excessive winds can damage your peonies, and a windbreak may be necessary. Peony roots should be planted in the early fall so they have plenty of time to develop strong root systems before spring. When planting these flowers, make sure to space them 4 feet apart, leaving plenty of room for growth in the future. Lastly, peonies do not require much water since there is usually enough moisture in the ground in the spring. If a few weeks have passed without rain, give them a good watering once every two weeks!

Windbreak Fence

Fun Facts about Peonies

There are over 40 species of peony that originate from Asia, Europe and North America. These species differ in color and size, with some growing up to 10 inches in diameter!

Sunset Magazine

The peony is the state flower in Rotoshovel’s home state, Indiana!

Peonies are edible. In China, partially cooked and sweetened peony petals are added to tea for more flavor!


If you have peonies in your garden, these tips are sure to help you grow them even larger this year. If you do not already have peonies, get some this season and put your newfound knowledge to use!

Happy Gardening!


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