Show me your clematis, I'll show you my peony...

I'm told I have a rather large peony of which other men would be jealous. Oh, what the heck, I'll show you both. They're side by side and bloom at the same time.

From bottom up, May apples, peony, clematis and million bells in cone-shaped basket.

From left to right on uprights, Dutchman's pipe, honeysuckle, clematis, chocolate akebia vine.
Below them are a mishmash of ferns, grasses, May apples, bleeding heart, hosta peony and, special guest star this season, a silver dollar plant. Next year, I take one-third of the stuff out of there. It's gotten to be too much of a jungle and needs more definition between plants, so they can be better appreciated. Though they're all happy.


  1. Jim ... this is absolutely gorgeous ! You can be VERY proud of your peony's size ? LOL
    I know what you mean about plants becoming too much of a mish mash .. I have the same problem coming forth now too .. and yes ! I like a plant to have definition as well, even in a grouping.

  2. I happen to like the jungle look. I've never thought to grow Peonies near Mayapples, as I'd thought the needed different light conditions, but they both look very happy together in your garden. What is that Clematis?

  3. I like the way your garden looks...the different leaf shapes and textures help differentiate them! But then I do have a jungle as I wait for the mass of Susans to bloom! gail

  4. Ha hah ha! Size isn't always what counts, Jim...but in this case, I love the robust, exuberant jungle look. Well, in all cases I love the jungle look. Except in my garden where all the rain is making a jungle of weeds...

  5. I'm not going to show my husband that peony. LOL.

    Love your terrace vignette. You didn't mention your embellishments--the mirrors on the fence and the carpet. Really nice touches.

    Is your Akebia a newbie? Or perhaps it's your climate. Here in the PNW at least in my garden, this vine is manic, giving Wisteria a run for its money.

  6. GardenJoy4Me,
    The mayapples have run a muck, the hosta are so covered by a huge waning bleeding heart, the Dutchman's pipe is taking over and the peony is almost hidden by ferns. The aphids seem to be doing a good job keeping the honeysuckle from overtaking the clematis. It's a jungle out there.

    MrMcG's Daughter,
    When I planted the May apples, they were left-overs from my mothers woodland garden. They seem to thrive here and multiply every year.

    I like the shapes and textures in this section of the garden too, but they're at the point where the poor guys in the back aren't getting the sun they so deserve.

    That's one thing I don't have to worry about here, weeds– or size!

    I wouldn't want your husband to feel inadequate. The mirrors have bee there for a few years. Usually there's torches in front of them for night-time atmosphere. The rug is one of two I have outside. It's made from recycled soda bottles. Best thing is, it doesn't need vacuuming!

  7. Jim, your peony is a champion, no doubt, but that clematis is gorgeous, too!

  8. jim, very pretty and funny too! i need to think about plant separation too... such hard and heart rending work for me! great post!

  9. If you've got it, flaunt it and those are both impressive plants. Whoever says size doesn't matter has small peonies. Love your art mimicry below.

  10. Tatyana,
    Thank you. The clematis in the last couple years has been this profuse. But I have noticed that the color gets less intense each year.

    Tough for me to pull and trim happy plants too. But the longer I garden, the more ruthless I have become.

    "Whoever says size doesn't matter has small peonies." Well said!

  11. Claudia,
    Boy, if I had a nickel for every woman that's said the love my peony, I'd... well... I'd have a nickel.

  12. That is an eye popping clematis display.

  13. Oh Jim, c'est absolument magnifique !

  14. I am jealous of your garden! My plants seem to a month behind. I blame our weather, but I am just outside of Toronto, not far from Buffalo as you may know, so maybe it's more than the weather. Sigh.

  15. mothernaturesgarden,
    Purely the luck of plant & place. No skill on my behalf.


    Jealous - or green with envy? I think it's a weird year too. Some things that never bloom together overlapped this year and other than roses and a few annuals, there's not much color out there yet. But the lilies are about to start so that'll all change.

  16. methinks you need some origami to go with your peony and clematis...


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