Are you a plant lover who's been hesitant to add peonies to your garden because of their reputation for being difficult to keep alive?
That's where Angela Pham, an acclaimed commercial photographer and burgeoning gardener based in NYC, comes in to debunk this myth.
In a recent viral TikTok video, she shares her heartwarming journey of growing peonies, the emblematic flowers of cottage aesthetics, in her upstate New York garden.
Watch the video below. We're about to change your entire perception about growing peonies!
@phamgela As a new gardener, I never thougt I could successfully grow peonies. I’m so glad I did! #gardeningtiktok #gardening #flowergarden #flowergarden #gardenaesthetic #cottagelife #cottagecore #flowergardenideas #gardening101 #cutflowers #cutflowersforbeginners #cutflowergarden ♬ original sound - Angela Pham
Known for her captivating content on cooking, fashion, and photography, Angela (@phamgela) has built a strong following on TikTok.
But it was her gardening voyage growing peonies that struck a chord with viewers around the globe, gaining an astonishing 1.5 million views.
Are Peonies Hard to Keep Alive? Debunking the Myth
Often associated with romanticism and luxury, peonies have long been perceived as high-maintenance flowers, intimidating for novice gardeners.
Angela debunks this assumption and takes us on an enriching journey from being a "total noob" in 2020 to proudly flaunting her flourishing peony garden in 2023.
Contrary to popular belief, peonies are actually quite hardy and can thrive with minimal care.
In fact, they're one of the most popular and beloved flowers in the world, thanks to their stunning blooms and sweet fragrance.
Did you know that peonies have been cultivated for over 2,000 years?
They were first grown in China, where they were prized for their medicinal properties as well as their beauty.
Today, peonies are grown all over the world and come in a wide variety of colors, from white and pink to red and even yellow.
Peonies are also incredibly versatile and can be used in a variety of ways.
They make beautiful cut flowers for bouquets and arrangements, and their petals can even be used to make fragrant tea.
Read more: Will Peony Buds Open After Cutting?
Plus, they're a favorite of bees and other pollinators, making them a great addition to any garden.
Peony Inheritance: 100-Year Old Blooms!
There's something incredibly inspiring about how Angela demystifies the world of peonies.
"I inherited my purple peonies from my grandma, and they are HEAVY DUTY. Even my two pit/hound mixes can't disrupt them," says one of her followers, @karolinawithac.
And it's true! Peonies are long-lived perennials that can live for decades with proper care.
In fact, some peony plants have been known to live for over 100 years! The lifespan of a peony plant depends on a variety of factors, including the variety, growing conditions, and care.
Generally, peonies can live for 20 to 30 years or more, and they tend to bloom more profusely as they mature.
How To Keep Peonies Blooming
In her video, Angela shows us that it takes just a bit of patience and love for these low-maintenance plants to reward you with a lavish display of blooms.
As per her experience, peonies require no feeding, pruning, or extra watering.
She emphasizes, "They live forever and just love full sun, some patience, and some staking if you don't want floppy blooms."
However, it's crucial to remember that like every plant, peonies too have their preferences.
As a user pointed out, and Angela concurred, these splendid blossoms may not fare as well in warmer climates.
So, it's always wise to be aware of your gardening zone before you start your peony adventure.
Yet, for those who reside in suitable climates, peonies hold a treasure of delightful surprises.
Take it from @deanierigney, another follower of Angela, who shares, "My peony bush belonged to my grandmother who passed in 1981. It had about 50 blooms this year. So beautiful."
Angela lives in Zone 5. Check out what other plants thrive in this zone:
- The 17 Best Plants To Grow In Zone 5a -20 To -15 °F (-28.9 To -26.1 °C)
- The 17 Best Plants To Grow In Zone 5b (-15 To -10 °F (-26.1 To -23.3 °C)
Time to Grow Your Own Peonies!
It’s not just about creating an attractive garden; it's about feeling connected to nature, understanding the rhythm of life, and experiencing the thrill of witnessing something grow from scratch.
If you've been contemplating starting your garden, perhaps it's time to let Angela's story inspire you to take the plunge.
After all, every great journey begins with a single step—or, in this case, a single peony root tuber.
For more peony information and growing tips, check out these other great reads:
A tip of the trowel to OpenAI's ChatGPT for helping cultivate this article.