Paeonia mlokosewitschii (Molly the Witch Peony) is a herbaceous perennial peony native to the Caucasus Mountains and parts of Asia Minor. It is a unique and charming peony species that is highly regarded for its delicate flowers and graceful appearance.
Appearance: Molly the Witch Peony is a herbaceous peony that grows from a clump-forming root system. It typically reaches a height of 2 to 3 feet (60 to 90 centimeters). The plant has attractive, fern-like foliage with deeply divided, toothed leaflets. The leaves emerge in spring and turn yellow in the fall, adding to the plant's ornamental appeal.
Flowers: The flowers of Molly the Witch Peony are the main highlight of this species. They are characterized by their unique and delicate appearance. The blooms are cup-shaped with narrow, pale yellow petals that are often slightly twisted or crinkled. The flowers have a lovely fragrance and can measure up to 4 inches (10 centimeters) in diameter. The center of the flower is adorned with a cluster of yellow stamens.
Bloom time: Molly the Witch Peony typically blooms in mid to late spring, depending on the climate and growing conditions. The flowering period is relatively short, lasting for a few weeks. The charming yellow flowers stand out among other spring blooms and add a touch of elegance to the garden.
Growing conditions: Molly the Witch Peony thrives in well-drained, fertile soil that is rich in organic matter. It prefers a sunny or partially shaded location in the garden. The plant is generally hardy and can withstand cold temperatures, tolerating USDA hardiness zones 4 to 8.
Landscape use: Molly the Witch Peony is highly valued as an ornamental plant for gardens and landscapes. Its delicate flowers and graceful foliage make it an excellent addition to perennial borders, cottage gardens, or woodland gardens. It can also be grown in containers or used as a cut flower.
Maintenance: Once established, Molly the Witch Peony requires minimal maintenance. Regular watering is important, particularly during dry spells or in the first year of planting. Mulching around the base of the plant helps conserve moisture and suppress weed growth. The plant may benefit from staking to support the blooms, as the delicate flowers can be vulnerable to wind damage. In late fall or early spring, removing any dead foliage and applying a layer of compost can help nourish the plant.
When selecting Molly the Witch Peony, it's advisable to obtain healthy plants from reputable nurseries or specialty growers. Planting peonies in the right location with proper care and maintenance will promote healthy growth and abundant flowering.