Tree Peony, Viburnum, Azalea Bloom a Month Early

Azalea 'Golden Lights'
The early bloom continues, with plants that blossom normally in mid- to late May in flower now. Azalea 'Golden Lights', a deciduous azalea that's part of the Northern Lights series, is just starting its sequence. I've always felt the term "golden" in its name should have been changed to "creamiscle" or "mango," because of its orangey-coral hues. It's gorgeous but not a good neighbor to my tree peony 'Princess Chiffon', which happens to be blooming just a few feet away from the Azalea.

If I had it to do over (and one great thing about gardening is that I can), I would plant the peony with Syringa 'Beauty of Moscow', a lilac with pinkish buds that open to white semi-double flowers. Since they're nowhere near one another, I put them together in a vase to get an idea of how they'd look together in the landscape.
Tree peony 'Princess Chiffon' in a vase with Lilac
'Beauty of Moscow'
Putting the peony and azalea in the same blog makes me cringe. The first issue that comes to mind is that they both are serious divas--demanding undivided attention and thereby causing a serious ocular distraction.

Both the Azalea and the peony bloomed last year around May 21, so we're still heading into summer around a month ahead of schedule.
Viburnum plicatum f. tomentosum 'Marieseii'
A spring-blooming shrub that's also reached its splendor early is doublefile viburnum, or Viburnum plicatum f. tomentosum 'Marieseii'. Despite its tounge-twisting name, the color goes with everything, and even after the blossoms fade, just looking at the crisp, pleated leaves can make you feel about 10 degrees cooler.

1 comment:

  1. I am completely gaga over tree peonies, so it's wonderful to discover one with which I'm not familiar. 'Princess Chiffon' sure has the Wow-factor going on. Tree peonies are total divas, but so worth it.