Friday, April 24, 2009
A Plethora of Peonies
This morning I headed out to Jingshan Park, which is just north of the Forbidden City. Over a year ago my friend took me there and we saw the area where peonies are grown, but as we were there in winter, there were just bare branches cut back in sectioned off squares of dirt, waiting for the spring.
And so this year I was determined to check out the peonies before they finished blooming for the season.
Already before 11am the park was flooded with domestic tourists visiting Beijing by the busloads. The locals were already there doing their daily exercises from balancing a ball on a kind of racquet and ribbon dancing.
Along a path there were many peony bushes and everyone was taking pictures of them. A young man in a security guard uniform periodically used his bullhorn to politely tell people to get off the grass even though there were already signs by the bushes with a pair of bare feet and a red line through them.
Last night we had a strong rainstorm and heavy winds, blowing many of the peonies and the rain drops weighed down the flowers.
Nevertheless this morning the peonies were the stars of the park, looking even more beautiful with the rain drops on them.
The area where the peonies were was far from bare and now covered with many bushes in full bloom. They were in various shades from light pink to mauve, dark fuchsia, white and pale yellow.
Gardening fans would be in flora heaven seeing so many peonies together.