MAY: A ROMANTIC TASTE OF THE SUMMER YET TO COME
No flower so fittingly illustrates the blooming strength of May as the Peony. The buds are balls of compressed energy that – when the time comes – open very quickly and smell beautiful. The single-flowered Peonies then display a fabulous heart, whilst the double-flowered varieties produce a cheerful full bloom of soft petals.
PEONY [PAEONIA] THE FLOWER OF THE MONTH APRIL!
The Peony originates from China and arrived in Europe around 1785. They are in their own family (Paeonia) with just one genus: the Peony.
The range of peonies is large, and there are hundreds of cultivars. Alongside white, pink and claret they also come in lilac, salmon pink (this is particularly popular as a match for Living Coral, the Pantone Colour for 2019), pale yellow and red. The flower shape can vary between double-flowered, single-flowered and anemone-flowered. Many peonies have a very strong sweet scent which makes the flowers even more appealing. The transformation from a bud which is some 3cm across into a flower with a diameter of over 15cm is always spectacular.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN BUYING PEONIES
- Check whether the Peonies are unbranched or branched (= more flowers), and that the stems are fairly straight.
- The ripeness of the bud is essential for them to be able to open in the vase. The stage of ripeness depends on the cultivar. Some cultivars are offered unripe, whilst others need to be slightly coloured to guarantee flowering. It’s ideal if the bud is slightly soft and the petals come apart slightly. Peonies that are too unripe will not open. In doubt ask you floral consultant at OZ Export, they know which Peonies are suited for your wishes.
- The flowers must be free of pests and diseases. Growers pre-treat the flowers to improve the lifespan. The only thing that Peonies sometimes suffer from is botrytis, which can be seen by spots on the flowers or leaves. Please make sure you’ll check this when you buy Peonies via KOA at the auction yourself. If you buy them directly at OZ Export we guarantee you’ll get healthy flowers.
- When peonies are in bud they exude nectar, probably to stick the bracts and petals together slightly during the last powerful stage of growth to keep them closed. That way they protect their reproductive organs in the wild until they’re ready for the romance of the birds and bees.
PROFESSIONAL PEONY PRESENTATION TIPS FOR YOUR SHOP
Peonies are seasonal flowers. Place them clearly in view and not too high so that customers can look down on them. Sorting into colour blocks is a more effective display than mixing the flowers.
Use very clean vases or buckets, store the Peonies in cool conditions and on a layer of water with bulb flower food. Ensure that the flowers cannot get damp due to excessive humidity or from condensation caused by temperature fluctuations. This will encourage botrytis, a fungus which rapidly diminishes the decorative value. With Peonies this is often called blight, and can be seen by small brown spots on the flowers or the leaves.
Give you customers tips on how to treat these beauties to make sure they enjoy them to the fullest!
MAY’S SPRING COLOUR PALETTE
PANTONE 15-0960 Mango Mojito
The golden yellow Mango Mojito feeds our craving for pleasant comforts.
PANTONE 16-1546 Living Coral
Living Coral is an affable and animating shade whose golden undertone gives it a softer edge.
PANTONE 15-1619 Pressed Rose
The blushing Pressed Rose fills us with thoughts of romance and sentimentality.
PANTONE 18-2045 Pink Peacock
The tantalizingly theatrical Pink Peacock fans out to a feast for the eyes.
PANTONE 17-0542 Pepper Stem
Zesty yellow-green Pepper Stem encourages our desire for nature’s healthy bounty.
COLOUR EXPERT TIP: IRIDESCENT
Surprise you customers with this modern and living colour. Iridescent is the phenomenon of certain surfaces that appear to gradually change colour as the angle of view or the angle of illumination changes.
FLOWER AGENDA 2019
The upcoming weeks the Peony is in the spotlight of the Flower Agenda. The inspirational images above are produced by the Flower Council. Keeping in mind the Horticulture Sector Trends for 2019. These trends are a translation of the latest consumer trends. We focus specifically on the horticultural sector.
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