Swenson Gardens

Monthly Archive: February 2021


Happy 2021 to all our dear peony friends! Winter has its benefits here on our peony farm for us mere mortals as well as the peonies still enjoying their winter hibernation. For the most part, the winter of 2020/2021 has been on the warmer side with -5 to -15 F temps forecasted this weekend for the first time this winter. Normally by this time, multiple nights of -10 to -20 F are the staple. We could accumulate more snow though!

Becky continues to enlighten garden clubs around the US with her online peony presentations. Some of you may have heard her speak but if not and you are part of a garden club or event, email us for more information on how you can book her. Maybe next year yours truly will be available as well for online and in person speaking opportunities.

We are still having issues with our ‘blog’ by not being able to upload pictures and videos. Our webmaster is looking in to this so stay tuned for a new ‘blog’ in the near future. For those of you who are not following us on social media, being able to post pictures versus just text on our blog is a short term goal.

Peony Field Days will be on our radar, and hopefully yours too, once we get in to May. We’ve been talking about adding more days to this event to accommodate more guests and to afford additional bloom time viewing. Depending on the weather and temperatures, early to mid, mid, mid to late and some late blooms are available to view. Very early, early, late and very late varieties are either past or haven’t bloomed during the time we are open to the public. Each year is a struggle trying to be open during peak bloom especially when we are besieged with high temperatures. Stay tuned as we get closer to bloom time for the potential of additional times we are open.

Dan Zabel (our hybridizer who was mentored by Roger Anderson) and I are like kids on Christmas morning waiting for our new seedlings to bloom. Hybridizing is painstakingly hard work when it comes to the meticulous record keeping of all our crosses. Yes its fun to see the 1st generation but when you get to the 3rd and 4th generation, the genealogy requires a huge investment of time, notebooks, spreadsheets and most importunately back ups to the back ups in case of a computer crash. Thankfully our IT person had us invest in multiple backup devices onsite and offsite as this information is irreplaceable. With our multiple generations of breeder plants, like the song from BTO, ‘you ain’t seen nothing yet…’ when it comes to our soon to be released new peony seedlings!

Recovery from my rotator cuff surgery on 19 November hit a brick wall last week. I told my doctor that I am special when it comes to surgeries so my follow up meeting with him tomorrow may afford an additional surgery or two. PT was going great and then when I started to use my left arm on its own, things went bad as I’m not able to lift my left arm on its own without help. Please pray for my follow up doctor appointment tomorrow and perhaps resolve as I’m hoping to be able to work in the fields come May or June or July or ?

I am thankful though that I can now type with both hands…for now at least! Enjoy your day!