The first peonies of the year began to open yesterday. In most years, Paeonia mascula opens the year quickly followed by P. emodi and P. wittmanniana. This year P. emodi is taking its time, but this morning both P. mascula and P. wittmanniana were wide open.
In the images above Paeonia mascula is the pink flower, P. wittmanniana is the white one.
Some sensible gardeners, notwithstanding their admiration for these beautiful flowers, will not want to give space for them in their own gardens: the flowers are fleeting. And not only are the flowers fleeting but they fade if it is warm and sunny.