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Re: Underplanting peonies

Thanks for all the suggestions, everybody. Have plenty to think about  

Cathy, west central IL, z5b

On May 8, 2006, at 7:38 AM, Bonnie & Bill Morgan wrote:

> I concur with Gene, Cathy.  Eventually you will need all 3 feet  
> just for the
> peonies.  You might consider an annual for a few seasons, like sweet
> alyssum.  It will bloom ALL summer with sweet smelling, white  
> blossoms.
> Depending on the foliage color (many of mine have a reddish tinge  
> to their
> dark green leaves) you might want to look for a contrasting leaved  
> annual.
> At the edge of one length of peonies, I have Sedum sarmentosum.  It  
> is very
> low to the ground, but the bright yellow-green leaves with their  
> summer
> yellow blossoms make a very nice contrast.
> At the other end of one run of peonies, I also have a clump of the
> reblooming Iris that Jesse shared with me, Innocence.  Again, it is  
> a nice
> contrast in leaf shape and color as well as the added bonus of a  
> fragrant
> bloom at a different time than the peonies.
> If you wanted to inter-plant something with your peonies, a house a  
> couple
> of miles from here has a large circle bed with pink flowered  
> peonies that
> are interplanted with a purple allium (Allium aflatuense 'purple  
> sensation)
> on the corner of the property that makes a stunning presentation as  
> most of
> the time, the two plant types bloom together!  It looks very much  
> like a
> GIANT bouquet growing out of the ground!  (The bed is at least 10  
> years old
> so is very full.  They add nothing to it after bloom, but rather  
> leave the
> peony foliage and deadhead the allium.)  If you wanted something to  
> bloom at
> a different time, perhaps you could use Lycoris squamigera (Nekkid  
> Ladies)
> inside the outside border of your peonies so that those "Nekkid"  
> stems would
> come up through the peony foliage and look like a totally different  
> plant
> with it's pink blooms!  (We had some growing through a short  
> juniper hedge
> at one house and it, too, made a statement.  I wouldn't think the  
> strap like
> leaves to follow would cause any problems for the peonies, but  
> maybe Gene
> would know.)
> Blessings,
> Bonnie (SW OH - zone 5)
> -----Original Message-----
> From: owner-gardenchat@hort.net [mailto:owner-gardenchat@hort.net]  
> On Behalf
> Of Gene Bush
> Sent: Monday, May 08, 2006 6:33 AM
> To: gardenchat@hort.net
> Subject: Re: [CHAT] Underplanting peonies
> Cathy,
>     I made a new bed with peony about 3 years back. Full sun. I  
> used both
> vineing clematis and the clumpers. the trailing ones get placed on  
> the peony
> foliage each spring after it is up. Also use siberian iris clumps,  
> lilium in
> a couple of clumps, hardy geraniums. Bit of a traditional early  
> summer bed,
> but I am after the foliage effect the rest of the year.
>     You do not have much width to your bed.. peony will take all of  
> the 3
> feet eventually.
>     Gene E. Bush
> Munchkin Nursery & Gardens, llc
> www.munchkinnursery.com
> genebush@munchkinnursery.com
> Zone 6/5  Southern Indiana
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Cathy Carpenter" <cathy.c@insightbb.com>
>> Any suggestions for plants that would look good with herbaceous
>> peonies in a west facing, full sun bed? The bed is no more than 3  
>> feet
>> wide. The peonies are a dark pink when in bloom, but my concern is
>> mostly what could bring interest to the bed after the peonies have
>> done their thing.
>> Cathy, west central IL, z5b
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