While I was outside taking pictures of the Red Buckeye, my wife asked if I wanted to see another “gotta’ have it… Beautiful Buckeye”. Intrigued because I thought I knew every plant in the Drapescape, I said “Sure, show me”. I was literally stunned when she showed me an incredibly gorgeous, jaw dropping Paeonia officinalis x P. lactiflora ‘Buckeye Belle’ (BB) that she had snuck in amongst her other peonies. It was truly the “Belle of Buckeyes”… alright, alright, it is not a woody ornamental tree, which is why I claimed that I missed its entrance into the Drapescape!
This cultivar ‘Buckeye Belle’ is in the plant family Paeoniaceae that has only one genus Paeonia with approximately 30 herbaceous species and 8 woody species! And the common spelling when referring to this large, flowered family can be peony or paeony, they are both correct! BB is considered to be a very early bloomer in the world of peonies. I can easily state that it is the first peony cultivar to bloom in our landscape and seems to be about 1-2 weeks ahead of the others.
I was amazed at the size of the flower of ‘Buckeye Belle’. It is categorized as a semi-double flower that is upward facing and is 4-6 inches across! I was surprised by the intense description of BB by the peony society… check it out! “Moderately large flowers composed of four, or so, layers of large, dark mahogany red, cupped and rounded outer petals and narrower and more deeply cut central petaloids, interspersed among thick, yellow anthers. Centers can appear turbulent, varying from bloom to bloom and developing with age.”
If for no other reason than just it’s stunning color, huge bloom size and GREAT NAME, enjoy the ‘Buckeye Belle’ and now you have another way to… GET YOUR BUCKEYE ON!!