Peonies are in season – florists share styling tips and the color-changing variety that is a must in any bouquet
Florists reveal how to style this mythical flower into your home – but you will need to act fast before the season ends
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It is perhaps only fitting that the peony, the flower that stems from Greek mythology, boasts magical abilities. While all peonies radiate a mystical aura in their own right, one species, in particular, is entirely mythical: Coral Charm Peonies.
This herbaceous perennial blooms from late spring to early summer, in which time their petals change from soft salmon pink to apricot orange, and, lastly, a zesty lemon yellow. These transformative flowers are unsurprisingly admired for their ability to add an ornate and ever-changing drama to both homes and gardens, and when planted outside, return year after year.
Differing from tree peonies, these herbaceous perennial flowers die back into the ground over the winter months. However, their blossoming season is notably short and thoroughly mysterious. Like all peonies, this only adds to their allure and means they are the most sought-after stems of the season.
Below, we investigate their charm – you can find out more about how to plant peonies in our separate guide.
'We love the dreamy color-changing petals of the Coral Charm Peonies (opens in new tab) – when they blossom, their vibrant coral petals lighten to a peachy pink shade before turning creamy white, it almost feels like you're getting three flowers in one,' shares Olivia Harvey, director at Bloom & Wild.
How should we style peonies in our homes?
If you're planning on planting peonies in your garden, take note of these myths about planting peonies, but if you're bringing them into your home, follow the florists' expert styling tips below.
1. When in doubt, opt for bold colored peonies
If you decide against Coral Charm peonies and choose a bloom whose color remains static, follow the advice of celebrity London designer and founder of luxury online florist Bloom (opens in new tab), Larry Walshe, who suggests investing in a rich dark red peony, which has already captivated for centuries.
'Deep Red is the most prized peony variety in China and Japan and has the strongest ties to honor and respect. It's also the most symbolic of wealth and prosperity in those cultures,' Larry explains.
2. Trim them short
See: Flower bed ideas – beautiful ways to create floral displays in your garden
It's the question every flower owner debates – do we leave long our flowers long, or cut their stems? According to Kate Kern, the Head Florist at Maison de Fleurs (opens in new tab), the most stylish option is to cut the peonies short before mixing them in a colorful vase with herbs.
'We love to style all shades of peonies [by] cutting them short and mixing them with herb foliage and placing them in colorful glassware. The herbs ensure the bouquet oozes with 'a gorgeous fresh scent perfect for dressing tables for dinner parties, or kitchen tables,' Kate shares.
'This is a gorgeous way to style them for a hallway or feature table as you enter the home – a fresh burst of color as you come through the door,' she adds.
3. Style them in a fishbowl vase
While we chose peonies for their aesthetic value, the correct shaped vase can make all the difference in the overall appearance of your room. Therefore, it is just as important to get the vase right.
According to Liam Lapping, florist at Flowercard (opens in new tab), the chicest way to do your peonies justice is with a fishbowl vase. Liam similarly urges us to cut our stems before arranging them in a fishbowl where we can see the full flower head.
'Ensure you spread the flowers out evenly to give the peonies a chance to bloom,' Liam adds.
4. Curate a front-facing bouquet
See: Raised bed garden ideas – build raised planters now for productive, low- maintenance gardening
Bloom and Wild may be renowned for their Coral Charm Peonies bouquets, but they're also full of styling tips that will improve the appearance of your blooms throughout your interiors. Their florist Harriet Parry encourages us to style our peonies into a large front-facing bouquet once the flowers open up big when they bloom.
'A front-facing bouquet makes things extra impactful. Cut a mix of your stems into three different heights. Pop the tallest at the back, the medium in the middle, and the shortest at the back. Remember to leave room for the peonies to bloom, so keep them spaced out as you go. Cramming them means they won't be able to open up as fully,' Harriet suggests.
Though peony season is only short, we're certainly going to make the most of it while we can – the race to bring them into our homes has begun.
Megan is the News and Trends Editor at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes. As the News Editor, she often focuses on emerging microtrends, sleep and wellbeing stories, and celebrity-focused pieces. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.
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