Common garden peony Paeonia lactiflora Paeonia lactiflora 'Festiva Maxima'Photo/Illustration: Jennifer Benner 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Common garden peony (Paeonia lactiflora) pay-OH-nee-ah lak-tih-FLOOR-ah Synonyms: P. albiflora Genus: Paeonia This stunning herbaceous woodland peony has upright red-mottled stems and dark green leaves that are elliptic or lance-shaped with rough margins. It bears usually solitary, single creamy white to pale pink blossoms that are cup-shaped and elegant. The blooms measure 3 to 4 inches across and have pale yellow stamens. Like all peonies, the flowers are with us for too short a time. They are followed by beautiful seedpods. Noteworthy Characteristics: Use in mixed, herbaceous, or shrub borders. Peonies are very long-lived. Care: Provide deep, fertile, humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil in full sun or part shade. Large cultivars may need support. Propagation: Divide in early autumn and replant, placing the new growths 2 inches below the surface; take root cuttings in winter. Problems: Prone to ringspot virus, Verticillium wilt, Botrytis blight, tip blight, leaf blotch, stem rot, Japanese beetles, and nematodes. Overview Height 1 ft. to 3 ft. Spread 1 ft. to 3 ft. Growth Habit Clumps Light Full Sun to Part Shade Moisture Medium Moisture Characteristics Fragrant Flowers, Showy Flowers Bloom Time Early Summer, Late Spring, Spring, Summer Flower Color Pink, White Uses Beds and Borders, Cut Flower Style Cottage Garden Seasonal Interest Spring Interest Type Perennials Paeonia lactifloraView the discussion thread.