Monday, May 31, 2010


This beautiful peony is a luscious shade of coral--hence the name, PINK HAWAIIAN CORAL PEONY. Semi-double coral-pink blooms, unlike any other peony. It is an award winner of the American Peony Society's Gold Medal. It is just breaking bud, and is so pretty in the front bed.
This bright pink tree peony, KAMATA FUJI, is stunning!  The pink petals look like satin, and the dark yellow stamens frame the deep rose-pink center.  This tree is especially hardy and pest free.  The blooms are 6-7" across and has been a fast grower--one of my favorites!  

A very unique herbaceous peony, PRAIRIE MOON, is a soft yellow surrounded by golden stamens. The elegant 6-7" blooms have a light floral scent. Its foliage is glossy green with strong stems. A Long-lived and pest free perennial, people can't believe it when they see a yellow peony!  Awesome!
When I was growing up, I remember my parents getting ready for Memorial  Day by picking all the peony blooms early, when they were just small buds, and placing them in big buckets of warm sugar water, and putting them downstairs where it was dark and cool.   When the day came, they would bring them up and sale them for Memorial day.  The flowers last longest if cut when the buds are about half open and the first petals are beginning to unfurl.  But, remember to leave two sets of strong leaves on your plants when cutting the stems.  Buds can also be stored dry in the refrigerator for 3-6 weeks (Yes, that's right!) if you cut off the foliage and wrap them in newspaper or paper towels.  A few days before you want flowers, take them out, recut the stems, and place them in a deep container of warm water.  Peonies are one of the longest-lived perennials--some that I have came from my Grandma Holland and are over 85 years old!      

We all get together every Memorial Day for a family cookout.  It's fun to get together!  This year everyone brought such fun things to eat!  My daughter, Libby, made my favorite BLACK BEAN AVACADO SALSA and a quick and easy FRUIT PIZZA.   Here are those super easy recipes:
1 pkg sugar cookie  dough
1/2 pint whipping cream, whipped
1 8-oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 C powdered sugar
Assorted Fruit 
Press cookie dough evenly on a greased pizza pan or round skillet.  Bake at 350 for 15-17 minutes.  Take out and cool.  Whip cream.  Set aside.  In another bowl, mix the softened cream cheese and powdered sugar, then fold in whipped cream.  Spread evenly on cooled crust.  Decorate  the top with desired fruit.  We like strawberries, bananas, kiwi, mandarin oranges, blueblerries, canned pineapple chunks, and raspberries.  You can make any pattern with fruit you like.  This is a great project for young children!  Refrigerate until serving.  Cut with pizza cutter.
1 small can black beans, drained
6-8  tomatoes, chopped (I prefer Romas)
2 avacados, seeded and chopped
3 green onions, chopped fine
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped  (Libby omitted this in ours)
1 can white or shoe peg corn, drained
1 pkg. Good Seasons Italian dry dressing
Mix Italian dressing as directed on package.  Stir in black beans, tomatoes, avocado, green onion, cilantro and corn.  Serve with tortilla chips. 
(I prefer Scoops-they hold the salsa well)

Susanne Holland Spicker Mother, Grandmother, Homemaker, Gardener, Teacher, Photographer

Passion is defined as the love of, or the object(s) of affection and emotion. I am passionate about family, friends, flowers, food, photography and fabulous music! This blog is dedicated to those loves.


  1. I am going to make that fruit salad! Looks yummy! Thanks for sharing.

  2. mmmmmm.. i love me some fruit pizza..