Double peonies, with multiple rows of petals, pack extra petal punch. One light pink 'Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt' and one magenta 'Diana Parks' fill a vase.
Tips for longer-lasting cut peonies:
• Cut peonies in the morning or evening when it's cooler.
• Cut flowers that have just started to bloom.
• Trim about an inch off the bottom of the stem, cutting at an angle to expose more stem to water.
• Remove leaves that will be under water when the peony is in a vase.
• Keep peonies out of direct sunlight.
• Replace the water every two to three days.
Midwest buying sources for peonies include:
• Klehm's Song Sparrow Farm and Nursery, Avalon, Wisconsin (800/553-3715; songsparrow.com).
• Gilbert H. Wild and Son, 2944 State Hwy. 37, Reeds, Missouri (888/449-4537; gilberthwild.com).