Peony Surprise


I love roses, and that includes the blowsy peony. After clearing a dense area of five feet tall stinging nettles from the area under the west wall, I then cleared a four feet mound of rubbish from just inside the west gate. Some of this rubbish had composted over the years, a real mix up of a clearing out.

Having levelled the site and decided that it would grow perennial flowers to cut, I started at the south end of the border with the rotavator pulling out barrowloads full of nettle roots freeing up the blades every few minutes or so it seemed. Halfway along, I spotted a deep red coloured shoot peeping through the soil, and looked further across and there were more, the top half of the bed was full of peony shoots which had been buried under the deep heap of soil and rubbish for years and were now being allowed to make an appearance. I am amazed that they survived.

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