Big Ben Peony

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Peonies are beloved for their stunning flowers and delightful fragrance, and Big Ben Peony is no exception. This article will delve into the history, characteristics, growing tips, common diseases, and landscaping uses of the Big Ben Peony.

History and Origin of Big Ben Peony

The Big Ben Peony, scientifically known as Paeonia lactiflora ‘Big Ben,’ has a rich history and enchanting origin. While specific details may vary, it is believed to have been cultivated in Europe, possibly originating in France or the Netherlands. This peony cultivar is cherished for its robust growth and captivating blossoms.

Description and Characteristics of Big Ben Peony

The Big Ben Peony boasts a number of noteworthy characteristics that make it a sought-after variety amongst gardening enthusiasts. Here are some key features:

  1. Flower Appearance: The blooms of the Big Ben Peony are known for their impressive size and captivating color. They typically exhibit vibrant shades of deep red or burgundy, often with a hint of cerise or purple. These large, showy flowers are double-petaled, creating a lush and romantic appearance.
  2. Growth Habit: As a herbaceous perennial, the Big Ben Peony has a bushy growth habit with sturdy stems that provide excellent support for the hefty blooms. Its foliage consists of lush green leaves that add to its overall aesthetic appeal.
  3. Size and Height: On average, the Big Ben Peony reaches a height of around 3-4 feet (0.91-1.22 meters) and spreads to about 2-3 feet (0.61-0.91 meters) wide. This compact yet substantial size makes it suitable for a variety of garden settings.

Stay tuned for the next sections of this article, where we will explore how to successfully grow and care for Big Ben Peony, common diseases and pests to be aware of, and the different ways you can incorporate this beautiful peony into your landscaping projects.

  • Big Ben Peony is a beautiful and popular flower with a rich history and origin.
  • It is characterized by its stunning flower appearance, tall growth habit, and impressive size and height.
  • Growing and caring for Big Ben Peony requires proper planting, sunlight and soil requirements, regular watering and fertilizing, as well as pruning and maintenance.
  • Common diseases and pests that affect Big Ben Peony include Botrytis Blight, Peony Wilt, and Aphids.
  • Big Ben Peony can be used in landscaping to create captivating and colorful displays.

History and Origin of Big Ben Peony

The Big Ben Peony has a rich history and originates from China. This stunning flower is renowned for its large blossoms and captivating fragrance. Its cultivation dates back to the Tang Dynasty and it gained popularity during the Ming Dynasty. Inspired by the iconic clock tower in London, England, this peony variety showcases sturdy stems and is perfect for both cut flowers and as a focal point in any garden. When planting, it is important to select a location with well-draining soil and abundant sunlight. Ensure that the planting hole is deep enough and avoid burying the crown too deeply. To encourage vigorous growth and exquisite blooms, regular watering and fertilization during the blooming season are essential. Embrace the grace and allure of the Big Ben Peony in your own garden.

Description and Characteristics of Big Ben Peony

Looking at the mesmerizing Big Ben Peony, we’ll uncover its distinctive features and allure. Delving into its flower appearance, growth habit, and impressive size and height, we’ll reveal the captivating aspects of this magnificent bloom. Prepare to be amazed by the stunning characteristics that make the Big Ben Peony a true standout in the floral world.

Flower Appearance

The flower appearance of the Big Ben Peony is truly remarkable. This peony has a large and showy flower appearance that is sure to catch anyone’s eye. The size of the blooms is impressive, often several inches in diameter. They can have a single layer of petals or a semi-double arrangement, creating a rich and voluminous look. With 5 to 8 petals, the flowers display a beautiful array of colors and textures.

Speaking of colors, the Big Ben Peony comes in various hues, including pink, white, red, and more. These vibrant colors add charm and vibrancy to gardens and floral arrangements, making them even more stunning. But it’s not just about the visual appeal. These flowers also emit a captivating fragrance that enhances the sensory experience. The fragrance is truly captivating, drawing in anyone who comes across it.

For growers, cultivating the Big Ben Peony is a joy as they anticipate the beautiful flowers in bloom. The flower appearance of this peony is truly something to be admired, making it a prized addition to any garden or floral display. If you want a flower that will make a statement, the Big Ben Peony is an excellent choice.

Attention Big Ben Peony lovers, get ready to be enchanted by the majestic beauty and fascinating history of this floral time traveler.

Growth Habit

The growth habit of Big Ben Peony is vigorous and upright. The plant has sturdy stems that support large blooms. It forms a clump of dark green foliage that remains attractive throughout the growing season.

The growth habit of Big Ben Peony is important for its placement in the garden. Its sturdy stems make it suitable for use as a cut flower, as well as in borders and perennial gardens. The upright growth habit ensures that the blooms are prominently displayed and not hidden by the foliage.

To ensure optimal growth, plant Big Ben Peony in well-draining soil with full sun or partial shade. Adequate watering and regular fertilizing promote healthy growth and abundant blooms. Prune in early spring to remove dead or damaged foliage and encourage new growth.

The growth habit of Big Ben Peony enhances its beauty and versatility as a garden plant. Its strong stems and attractive foliage make it a popular choice among gardeners who want to add elegance and color to their landscapes.

Size and Height

The size and height of the Big Ben Peony can vary depending on growth conditions and maturity. The table below lists the typical size and height ranges for the Big Ben Peony:

Size and Height Range
Flower Diameter 6-8 inches
Plant Height 3-4 feet
Stem Length 30-40 inches

The flowers of the Big Ben Peony can reach a diameter of 6-8 inches. The plant typically grows to a height of 3-4 feet, with stems reaching 30-40 inches.

It is important to note that these size and height ranges are approximate and can vary depending on factors such as growing conditions, soil quality, and pruning practices. Adequate sunlight, well-drained soil, and regular watering can help promote healthy growth and maximize the size and height of the Big Ben Peony.

When planting and caring for the Big Ben Peony, consider its potential size and height. Choose a suitable location in your garden that allows enough space for the plant to grow to its full potential. Proper pruning and maintenance techniques can also help promote optimal growth and enhance the overall appearance of the Big Ben Peony.

By considering the size and height of the Big Ben Peony, you can effectively plan for its placement in your garden and ensure it thrives in its surroundings.

If you want your Big Ben Peony to thrive, give it some sunlight, good soil, and a little TLC…or else it might just give you the floral version of the cold shoulder.

Growing and Caring for Big Ben Peony

Growing and Caring for Big Ben Peony - Big Ben Peony

Photo Credits: Fortheloveofgardeners.Com by Gabriel Garcia

Discover the secrets of growing and caring for the magnificent Big Ben Peony! From planting to maintenance, this section will take you through the essential aspects of cultivating this stunning flower. Uncover the best practices for planting Big Ben Peony, learn about the ideal sunlight and soil requirements it needs to thrive, understand the importance of proper watering and fertilizing, and discover the art of pruning and maintaining this remarkable plant. Get ready to witness the beauty of Big Ben Peony unfold before your eyes!

Planting Big Ben Peony

When planting the Big Ben Peony, it is important to follow these steps for successful growth. Choose a suitable location that receives full sun or partial shade. Next, prepare the soil by digging a wide and deep hole for the plant. Then, amend the soil with organic matter like compost to improve drainage and enrich it. After that, place the peony plant in the hole, making sure the buds are no more than 2 inches below the soil surface. Backfill the hole with soil, gently firming it around the roots to remove air pockets.

To care for your planted Big Ben Peony, consider the following suggestions. Water the plant thoroughly after planting and regularly thereafter, keeping the soil evenly moist but not waterlogged. Fertilize the plant in early spring with a balanced, slow-release fertilizer for necessary nutrients. Provide support with stakes or cages to prevent the plant from flopping. Keep the area around the plant clean and weed-free to maintain its health.

By following these steps and providing proper care, you can successfully plant and grow your Big Ben Peony.

Get ready to give your Big Ben Peony the VIP treatment by providing it with the perfect balance of sunlight and soil.

Sunlight and Soil Requirements

When growing and caring for Big Ben Peony, understanding its sunlight and soil requirements is crucial for successful development and blooming.

Sunlight Requirements: Big Ben Peony thrives in full sun and needs six hours of direct sunlight per day. Find a location in your garden that receives ample sunlight throughout the day.

Soil Requirements: Big Ben Peony prefers well-draining soil rich in organic matter. The soil should have a pH level between 6.5 and 7.5, slightly acidic to neutral. Adequate drainage prevents waterlogging since peonies don’t tolerate wet soil.

Soil Preparation: Before planting Big Ben Peony, prepare the soil properly. Loosen the soil to a depth of 12-18 inches and add compost or well-rotted manure to improve fertility and drainage. This will create a good growing environment.

Watering: Although peonies are drought-tolerant, they still require regular watering, especially during dry periods. Keep the soil consistently moist, but not overly saturated, to avoid root rot.

Fertilizing: Big Ben Peony benefits from regular fertilization. Apply a balanced, slow-release fertilizer in early spring before new growth emerges. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for proper application rates. Topdress the soil with compost annually for ongoing nutrients.

By providing Big Ben Peony with adequate sunlight and well-draining, nutrient-rich soil, you will create a favorable environment for its growth and ensure healthy flowering.

Give your Big Ben Peony the right balance of water and fertilizer, because it needs nourishment, just like your favorite reality TV show needs drama.

Watering and Fertilizing

When it comes to watering and fertilizing your Big Ben Peony, it’s important to follow these steps. First, make sure to water deeply once or twice a week, allowing the soil to slightly dry out between waterings. This will help prevent root rot, so be careful not to overwater.

Next, in early spring before new growth appears, apply a balanced fertilizer. You can choose to use a slow-release fertilizer or apply liquid fertilizer every four to six weeks throughout the growing season. It’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for dosage to ensure proper application.

To retain moisture, suppress weeds, and provide nutrients as it breaks down, consider mulching the base of your Big Ben Peony with organic mulch. This will help create an ideal growing environment for your plant.

It’s a good idea to conduct a soil test to determine nutrient levels and pH. Peonies prefer slightly acidic soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. Adjusting the soil’s acidity can contribute to the overall health and blooming of your Big Ben Peony.

Watering and fertilizing have been essential practices in horticulture since ancient times. Cultures such as the Egyptians and Mesopotamians recognized their significance in promoting healthy plant growth and flowering. Over time, techniques and methods have evolved, leading to a better understanding of the specific watering and fertilizing needs of different plant species, including the Big Ben Peony.

Pruning and Maintenance: When it comes to Big Ben Peony, giving it a little trim now and then is the horticultural equivalent of giving it a fresh haircut – always stylish and keeps it looking sharp.

Pruning and Maintenance

Pruning and maintenance are crucial for the health and proper growth of the Big Ben Peony. It is important to regularly prune the plant to eliminate dead or damaged branches and allow for the plant to focus its energy on healthy growth.

By removing broken or diseased stems first, we can prevent the spread of diseases and pests. In late winter or early spring, it is advisable to prune back old foliage and stems to encourage new growth. To stimulate strong shoots, it is recommended to trim the stems to about 2 inches above the ground.

During the growing season, it is necessary to deadhead spent flowers by cutting the stem above a healthy leaf node, as this can increase blooms the following year. To prevent disease transmission, it is also important to sanitize pruning tools before and after each use.

In terms of maintenance, deep and even watering is essential to keep the soil consistently moist without becoming waterlogged. Applying a balanced fertilizer annually in early spring will provide the plant with essential nutrients for healthy growth.

Common Diseases and Pests of Big Ben Peony

Big Ben Peony enthusiasts, brace yourselves as we dig into the common diseases and pests that can plague these beautiful flowers. From the notorious Botrytis Blight to the stubborn Peony Wilt and the unwelcome presence of Aphids, we’ll unravel the challenges that Big Ben Peony growers face. Get ready to learn how to identify, prevent, and treat these pesky intruders, ensuring your Big Ben Peonies stand tall and vibrant year after year. Let’s dive in and safeguard our beloved blooms!

Botrytis Blight

Botrytis blight, also known as grey mold, is a common problem that affects Big Ben Peony plants. This particular disease is caused by the fungus Botrytis cinerea and can have detrimental effects on both the flowers and foliage.

To identify botrytis blight, look out for greyish-brown patches on the flowers or buds and a fuzzy grey mold. Unfortunately, this disease spreads quite rapidly, especially in cool and moist conditions with poor air circulation.

Fortunately, there are measures you can take to prevent botrytis blight. First and foremost, it is important to maintain the overall health of your plants. Providing good air circulation is crucial in combating this fungal infection. One way to achieve this is by removing any dead or decaying plant material promptly, as these can become breeding grounds for the fungus. Another preventive measure is to avoid overhead watering, as this creates a damp environment that is favorable for fungal growth.

In the event that you detect botrytis blight on your Big Ben Peony plants, it is imperative to act quickly. Removing and destroying affected flowers or foliage is crucial in preventing further spread of the disease. It is recommended to use a fungicide specifically formulated for peonies. To ensure effective treatment, make sure to carefully follow the instructions provided with the fungicide.

By taking these necessary precautions and promptly addressing any signs of botrytis blight, you can effectively protect your Big Ben Peony plants and ensure their health and beauty throughout the growing season.

Peony Wilt

Peony wilt is a common disease that affects peony plants, including the Big Ben Peony. This fungal disease, caused by the botrytis paeoniae fungus, can damage the plant if not addressed. It leads to the browning or blackening of leaves, and the plant may wilt and eventually die.

To effectively prevent and manage peony wilt, it is important to take certain steps. First, ensure that the peony plants are planted in well-drained soil, as waterlogged conditions can promote the growth of fungi. Providing adequate spacing between plants allows for proper air circulation, which prevents the spread of the disease.

In the event that peony wilt is observed, immediate action is necessary. Remove and discard any infected plant material to prevent the spread of the fungus. Fungicides can also be applied to control the disease, but it is advisable to consult with a local garden center or professional for specific recommendations.

Peony wilt can have detrimental effects on the health and aesthetics of peony plants. Therefore, it is important to remain vigilant and implement appropriate measures to prevent and manage this disease.

Fun fact: Peony wilt is more likely to occur in areas with high humidity and prolonged periods of rainfall. This highlights the significance of proper drainage and air circulation in preventing the disease.

Aphids love Big Ben Peonies so much, they throw a party on the petals – just don’t forget to invite the exterminator!



Aphids are pests that can harm Big Ben Peony plants. Here are some important points to know about dealing with aphids:

1. Identification: Aphids are small, soft-bodied insects that can be green, brown, black, or pink. They cluster on plant stems, leaves, and flower buds.

2. Damage: Aphids feed on plant sap, causing leaves to curl, distort, or turn yellow. They produce sticky honeydew, attracting ants and promoting black sooty mold growth.

3. Prevention: Regularly check Big Ben Peony plants for aphids. Clear away weeds and debris that can harbor aphids or their eggs. Introduce beneficial insects like ladybugs, lacewings, or parasitic wasps that eat aphids.

4. Natural remedies: Use a strong stream of water to dislodge aphids. Make homemade insecticidal soap with mild dish detergent mixed with water. Neem oil can also deter aphids.

5. Chemical control: If infestation is severe and natural remedies fail, consider using insecticides labeled for aphid control. Follow instructions carefully and ensure product safety for peonies.

6. Regular maintenance: Keep plants healthy by providing enough water, fertilizing when needed, and removing dead or infested plant material. Healthy plants are more resistant to aphid infestations.

By following these suggestions, you can effectively manage aphids on your Big Ben Peony plants and ensure their growth and beauty.

Uses and Landscaping with Big Ben Peony

Uses and Landscaping with Big Ben Peony - Big Ben Peony

Photo Credits: Fortheloveofgardeners.Com by Nathan Walker

The Big Ben Peony is a versatile plant that can be used in various landscaping applications. It serves as an excellent focal point, adds borders, acts as hedges, and even makes stunning cut flowers.

With its showy blooms and elegant form, the Big Ben Peony effortlessly captures attention and enhances the beauty of any landscape. When planted along borders or used as a hedge, it creates a visually stunning effect.

The lush foliage and abundant blooms also provide a natural and colorful barrier, offering privacy and defining your garden space. As cut flowers, the Big Ben Peonies are exquisite, making them perfect for floral arrangements and indoor decorations. Their large and fragrant blooms bring an element of elegance to any setting.

These flowers play a crucial role in supporting pollinators such as bees, butterflies, and other insects, making them an asset to your garden.

Originating from the United States in 1943, the Big Ben Peony is a hybrid cultivar developed by A. P. Saunders. It has gained popularity for its breathtaking blooms, vigorous growth, and remarkable versatility in various landscaping uses.

Whether you are a garden designer or enthusiast, this timeless beauty can effortlessly enhance any outdoor space.

Some Facts About Big Ben Peony:

  • ✅ Peony Big Ben is a Chinese Peony or Common Peony. (Source:
  • ✅ It is recommended to plant the Peony Big Ben with the eyes 2″+ below the soil and the crown at soil line. (Source:
  • ✅ The plant requires moderate watering and can tolerate full sun to partial sun. (Source:
  • ✅ The Peony Big Ben has a botanical name of Paeonia lactiflora ‘Big Ben’. (Source:
  • ✅ The bloom season for Peony Big Ben is from mid-spring to early summer. (Source:

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the recommended planting depth for the Big Ben Peony?

The Big Ben Peony should be planted with the eyes 2″+ below the soil and the crown at soil line.

How large does the Big Ben Peony grow?

The Big Ben Peony can reach a height of 30-36 inches.

What is a field grown division?

A field grown division refers to a plant that has been grown in a field and is ready for transplanting.

Do you offer gift certificates for the Big Ben Peony?

The availability of gift certificates for the Big Ben Peony can be found on our website or by contacting our customer service.

What is the recommended planting proximity for the Big Ben Peony?

When planting the Big Ben Peony, it is advised to keep a proximity of 2-3 feet between each plant.

Can the Big Ben Peony tolerate hot climates?

Yes, the Big Ben Peony can tolerate full sun to partial sun and appreciates some afternoon shade in hot climates.

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