Japanese forest peony Paeonia obovata var. alba 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Japanese forest peony (Paeonia obovata var. alba) pay-OH-nee-ah oh-bo-VAY-tah variety AL-bah Genus: Paeonia This plant is a beautiful addition to the garden from early spring until autumn. Red shoots with a crystalline dusting emerge in early April, followed by 5-inch-long, egg-shaped leaves that mature to a dark, reddish green. Each 18-inch stem bears a 2-inch-wide, chalice-like, single pure-white flower with yellow anthers and purple filaments. Mature seedpods open to reveal metallic-blue pea-sized fertile seeds and holly-berry red unfertilized seeds. Noteworthy Characteristics: Often confused with P. japonica , which bears similar flowers but blooms later. Crown increases much slower than other herbaceous peonies. Care: Prefers fertile, humus-rich, moist (but not soggy) soil. Avoid contacting the fleshy spring shoots with inorganic fertilizer, which burns the tender leaves. Propagation: Best from seed, although slow. Plant only fresh fertilized seeds, which are metallic blue, in the autumn for good germination rates. Plants will bloom in the third or fourth year. Problems: Botrytis is an infrequent problem. 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 Showy Flowers, Showy Foliage, Showy Fruit, Showy Seed Heads Bloom Time Spring Flower Color White Uses Beds and Borders, Cut Flower, Specimen Plant/Focal Point Style Cottage Garden, Woodland Garden Seasonal Interest Spring Interest Tolerance Deer Tolerant Type Perennials Related Plants to Paeonia obovata var. alba 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red' 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Common garden peony Paeonia lactiflora 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 'Crimson Curls' coral bells Heuchera 'Crimson Curls' 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Hosta Hosta 'Sun Power' View the discussion thread.