Monday, June 4, 2012

Peonies and Roses

This has been the best year to date for peonies here in the garden. I am having another love affair with all the different peonies. After the tree peonies finished blooming they leave behind their seed pods. I wait all year long for these pods to appear. I like to cut and dry them and keep them in my office over the winter for decoration. They remind me of the flowers and seem to have a magic all their own. 
In the collage at the bottom of the entry I included one of these amazing peony pods. 

 One of my dear friends sent me gifts from her Persian homeland of rose petals, rose oil and the most incredible rose drops for internal use, this use of rose oil is not one that I am familiar with, but I am interested to learn more about how this remedy is prescribed in traditional  Persian medicine. 
Another present of deep red rose petals came to me this week so it has been the week of rose gifts!

I have been reading about the history of peony cultivation and recently learned that Chinese horticulturalists were the first peony breeders. During the T'ang dynasty peony plants were often included in dowery settlements as they were considered so valuable to royal families. 

This beautiful flower, below, was so delicate, I was able to photograph it before the rains came and took the nearly transparent light pink petals away. I have also been photographing the leaves of the peony bushes because I find them to be very elegant. I included them in the collage above.

In this entry,  the pictures of roses and peonies are from the garden,  and of the gifts that I received this week. Thank you friends for all of the pretty offerings, you know me so well! Love, Mia

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