Swenson Gardens


Ok, so the term ‘presumed’ bloom times from my previous post, is now thrown out the window. The top three events that can affect peony bloom times are: 1) late frosts, 2) inclement weather and 3) high temperatures. Lets elaborate a bit on each but focus later on number 3.

For those of you who attended our 2020 Peony Field Days, you probably noticed less blooms and plants void of any blooms. This was caused by late frosts that froze out the buds. It was very noticeable on very early, early and early to late blooming peonies. The cold temperatures did not allow the buds to form thus eliminating some to most of the color. Mid to very late blooming peonies were not affected as much due to the fact that their buds were not developed yet at the times of freezing temperatures. The flip side though is that the following year after late frosts, peonies will set more stems and buds as their energy went into more root production. Go figure, in 2021, the peonies are amass with buds and blooms!

Inclement weather can be disastrous to say the least. In the past we have cancelled many Peony Field Days due to rain, wind and hail damage. I don’t see this happening the next couple of days so I’m thinking we are ok with inclement weather. In previous posts you will see pictures of our driveway being flooded out due to massive rain storms and way back when, straight line wind damage to one of our fields. The former owners of our farm experienced a massive flood in 1990 that required the use of a boat for 2-weeks in order to get to our home on the hill and 70th St SW. This is one of the reasons why we plant our peonies over many different fields in case flooding may occur. Thank the good Lord we have been spared from major damage including a tornado that traversed south of our home and damaged property SE of us on Labor Day 2020.

High temperatures? You betcha! Yes dear friends the next few days could also be termed inclement weather AND high temperatures. This will not harm peonies but the term ‘presumed’ bloom times is null in void. Meaning peony blooms will blow out (bloom quickly) as their way of saying, ‘I DO NOT LIKE HIGH TEMPERATURES’! Yes we have color now with some early, early to mid and mid blooms, but we are at the mercy of high temperatures which may see later peonies blooming as well. We’ve been blooming with very early varieties for the past 2-weeks. Lovely to say the least but they are done for this year.

Make sure to stay hydrated while walking our fields on June 4th and 5th. We do not have water available onsite so bring plenty with you. We will do our best to greet you in the peony fields but we also need breaks from the sun. Be safe in our peony fields as you enjoy Swenson Gardens 2021 Peony Field Days!

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