Swenson Gardens

Monthly Archive: June 2018


Not sure what is going on with Saturday’s and peonies this year, but today we are experiencing thunderstorms like we’ve had the past two Saturday’s. Thankfully we were able to get in the last cutting of 1st crop hay for the fertilizer production team (FPT) earlier this week. This rain is certainly a relief from the extreme heat we had yesterday. They are contently laying down in the pasture chewing their cud and getting a much needed shower. The color in the peony fields are on the downswing. Yes the intersectional hybrid or Itoh peonies are still displaying their vibrant colors, but most of the herbaceous peonies are done. Now the wonder of our top 3 selling peonies is in full bloom. Yes Candy Stripe is putting on quite a show. Last evening I ventured out into the fields to catch some of the late blooming peonies.

Candy Stripe and Feathertop blew me away with this shot. With the storms and high winds mid-week, they still continue to stand tall.

The Mighty Mo also stood tall and continues to bloom in the fields.

Wow was this a sight to see! Yes Garden Treasure threw open a huge bloom! Garden Treasure is a shorter and more spreading plant habitat that works well in from of a border. Both Bartzella and Garden Treasure are still our favorite ‘yellows’.

I don’t want to sound redundant, but if you do not grow Nancy Nora in your peony cutting garden, she is now our second favorite peony cut flower this year.

We are pleased to announce our latest peony to bloom this year. Yes dear friends, Rose Pearl, surprised us with the lateness of bloom and yes the immense size of her blooms. Oh and our most fragrant peony in the fields and vase. Thank you Rose Pearl for an outstanding display and winner of 2018’s latest peony to bloom.


Thank you again for all who attended Swenson Gardens Peony Field Days for 2018! Our Peony Field Days are now closed for 2018. The weather certainly has not been very favorable this year so for 2019 we will be adding additional days for our fields to be open to the public. We try to accommodate as many peony admirers as possible during peak bloom so hopefully next year the added dates will present more opportunities to view our peonies. You can still order peonies through our online store or mail in orders. That information can be found in more detail on our ‘how to order’ page. Once we tally up the orders from the past few days we will update our website for any sold outs. For those of you who attended Peony Field Days today, June 9th, you are definitely hardcore peony gardeners. Having to wait in your vehicles for the thunderstorm to pass at 9 am, getting chased off of the fields early this afternoon for another round of storms and then trudge through the fields during a rainstorm, you are gardening stars! Thankfully all were safe as viewing peonies vs getting struck by lightening is not a choice. Thanks again for all who attended and we look forward to seeing you at peony pick up days and our 2019 Swenson Gardens Peony Field Days!



Thank you to all who visited Swenson Gardens Peony Field Days today. We appreciated the chance to meet you and for those of you who braved a brief shower this afternoon, you were champs hanging in there until it passed. For Saturday, June 9th, we will be open from 9 am to 5 PM. Looks like a 30% chance of rain before noon, so for those of you coming during that time, you may want to bring an umbrella, rainsuits and boots IF we do get rain. IF thunderstorms, we will be temporarily closed until they pass as we want to make sure everyone is safe. This is the last day we will be open for Peony Field Days this season so praying that the rain/thunderstorms pass us by. Looks like the afternoon is partly cloudy with 0% chance of rain. That said though, check the radar before venturing out here just to make sure. We are still in the mid and mid to late bloom cycle with some late varieties that are just starting. It continues to be peak bloom in the fields for intersectional or Itoh hybrid peonies with all of them still showing great color. Please note that we are not open on Sunday, June 10th and we are so sad that Saturday, June 9th is our last day we are open to the public. Have a safe journey and we look forward to seeing you at Swenson Gardens Peony Field Days!


Real time greeting from Swenson Gardens Peony Field Days at 7:30 am, Friday, June 8th. The showers are over here and sun is starting to shine. We are opening at 9 am and closing at 5 PM. It is a tad muddy in the fields from the rain we had earlier this morning so you may want to bring some boots if coming this morning. It should dry out this afternoon. Oh and please wish Becky a happy birthday! Looking forward to seeing you at Swenson Gardens Peony Field Days!


With the 20% chance of rain/thunderstorms early on June 8th, we are calling it a green light for Peony Field Days on Friday! Looks like a beautiful day to stroll through our peony fields! Can you say peak bloom on the intersectional or Itoh hybrid peonies? Never before have we had all our available intersectionals in this peak of a bloom. Simply breathtaking.

Bartzella and New Millennium really popped with color during an overcast sky tonight.

Gordon E. Simonsin is putting on quite a show with his secondary buds just starting to bloom.

Callie’s Memory presented the shot I have been waiting for that represents its true coloration in full bloom.

White Emperor is just starting to bloom and with the overcast sky presented the warmer shade of white vs when I usually like to shoot white colors in full sun.

Finally Little Jeannie one of our new lactiflora seedlings, is showing off why its hybridizer, Roger Anderson, is considered one of the true pioneers in hybridizing peonies. We are looking forward to seeing you at Swenson Gardens Peony Field Days!


Peony Field Days are prepped and ready to go for Friday, June 8th from 9 am to 5 PM, depending on weather of course. We will update on our blog, Facebook and 763-350-2051 as we get closer and actually see what the weather will be. Earlier this morning we were spared from the thunderstorm that rolled through although the much needed rain was certainly appreciated. Peak bloom will certainly be upon us for Friday and Saturday! Please note that we are not open on Sunday, June 10th. The intersectional or Itoh hybrid peonies are starting to show off in the fields.

New Millennium is certainly no exception to the beauty and long lasting bloom.

Bartzella started to bloom on a few plants yesterday and today he was in full bloom.

Joanna MarleneJ also appeared today and affords a delicacy to ones eyes.

One of our favorite fragrant cut flower peony, Nancy Nora, gave us the scent that we have been missing since last year.

Another one of our favorite cut flowers that are not fragrant is Etched Salmon. A stately and complex bloom style that is held high on stiff, stout stems.

The Japanese style blooms are also starting like Cheese Country.

For those of you who were here last Friday and saw (and ordered) Topeka Coral in its early bloom phase, it has literally blossomed into a row of immense coral blooms.

Coral Supreme was glorious tonight with its rich coral hue that will change to some ivory highlights as it nears the end of its show.

I leave you with this parting shot as the sun was setting. Very fitting to end this collage with yes, Coral Sunset. This is by far our most popular coral knowing its tri-color and tri-phase bloom sequence. Our address again is 10958 70th St SW, in Howard Lake, MN for those of you who will be visiting us. Please note that we are a pet friendly peony farm so feel free to bring your four legged family member as long as they are on a leash and picked up after. Our parking lot is directly east of our driveway as you enter from 70th St SW and yes we do have mini-biffs onsite. Safe travels and looking forward to seeing you at Swenson Gardens Peony Field Days!


Peony Field Days for Saturday, June 2, 2018 is cancelled. The storms have missed us so far but the continual rain has left the fields in very muddy conditions. Please note, we are not open again until Friday, June 8, 2018 and Saturday, June 9, 2018 from 9 am to 5 PM. Praying for better weather next week. Will post more pics on what is in bloom for next weeks Peony Field Days but for now this is what it looks like from out our front door.


Thank you to all who attended our Peony Field Days today. We had a wonderful time talking with you in the fields and enjoying the early to mid peony blooms. For those of you who could not make it today or are our online virtual gardening friends, here are a few highlight pics.

Gordon E. Simonsin continues to leave all of us in awe of its purple/lavender blooms.

Hillary started to open up this morning and left quite an impression on those of you who saw it in bloom.

White Emperor gave us a few blooms to enjoy later in the day. For those of you with small spaces, White Emperor is the smallest intersectional hybrid peony that we grow.  Again thank you to all who attended our Peony Field Days today.