The flowers of both herbaceous, or bush and tree peonies, come in a rainbow selection of colours including white, cream, pink, coral, red and yellow, along with less common colours. Although many peonies have a predominant colour, they are not always a solid colour, and sometimes they have a different colour centre. The most common peony flower colours are the pinks, reds and whites. Different varieties have different shaped flowers with single, semidouble and double the most common.
White and Cream
Pure white peonies include the Paeonia lactiflora 'Duchesse de Nemours,' a double flower. Both it and the semi-double Paeonia lactiflora 'Miss America' have a compact height and spread of 2-1/2 to 3 feet. Although many peonies do not have a native range, the Paeonia japonica, a white, single with yellow stamens, is native to Japan. It is small with a height and spread of 1 to 1-1/2-feet. The Paeonia lactiflora 'Alley Cat' is an example of a creamy white peony, its height and spread are 2-1/2 to 3 feet.
Displaying more colour is the Paeonia lactiflora 'Angel Cheeks,' a white, blushed-pink double and the Paeonia lactiflora 'Raspberry Rumba,' its flower is a creamy-white streaked with raspberry. They both have a height and spread of 2 to 2-1/2 feet.
While the previous six peonies were herbaceous, the Paeonia ostii 'Feng Dan Bai' Phoenix White is a tree peony. Its flower is white with a yellow centre and it has a height and spread of 4 to 5 feet.
Pink and Red
The Paeonia 'America' with a flower that is red with a golden-yellow centre, the Paeonia 'Coral 'n' Gold' with a coral and gold single flower, the Paeonia 'Coral Sunset' with its flowers a coral pink with gold centres and the Paeonia lactiflora 'Alice Harding' with its pink petals with white centre.
Examples of tree peonies include the Paeonia delavayi var. lutea 'Hesperus' with a flower that is rose-pink with yellow single and the Paeonia 'Themis' with a solid pink flower.
Each of these peonies bloom in May.
The Paeonia 'Goldfinch' has a pure yellow flower and is fairly big with a height and spread 3 to 4 feet. While the Paeonia 'Prairie Moon' has a flower that is yellow with darker yellow centres. Its height is 2-1/2 to 3 feet and its spread is 2 to 2-1/2 feet.
Green, Orange and Purple
Paeonia lactiflora 'Green Lotus' has a pale lime green flower with pink overtones and yellow centres. Its height and spread is a compact 2 to 2-1/2 feet. The 'Green Lotus' is an herbaceous peony, as is the larger Paeonia 'Tessera' peony, which produces an orange semidouble flower and stands 3 to 5 feet tall with a spread of 3 to 4 feet. The Paeonia suffruticosa 'Kamada-nishiki' Kada Brocade has a dark purple semidouble flower. Although it is a tree peony, it is the same size as the 'Tessera' and all three bloom in May.
- Sunset: Peony (Paeonia) Quick Facts and Care Essentials
- National Gardening Association: Peony: The King of Flowers, By Charlie Nardozzi
- Colorado State University: Plant Peonies in the Fall
- Missouri Botanical Gardens: Plant Search on - type "Peony" in "PlantFinder" search box menu, hit enter
- Iowa State University: Growing Garden Peonies
- North Carolina State University: Peonies for the Home Landscape