“Pliny the Elder, writing in the 1st century BC … describes 20 illnesses that the peony will cure, including jaundice, nightmares, liver disease and stomach ache. This all-powerful plant was even dedicated to Paeon, Greek physician to the gods, and its potency gave rise to the theory that the plant was positively dangerous. Pliny recorded that peonies should only be dug up at night. If you dug them up in the day, a woodpecker would come and peck out your eyes. …” (In praise of peonies, a perfect plant)
Peonie research at the UAF Georgeson Botanical Garden:
“There are now 35 peony growers statewide with more than 500 roots in the ground, and more than 150 people are working toward that goal. Most are members of the Alaska Peony Growers Association.”
“Peonies thrive in sunny locations and well-drained soils, tolerating a wide range of soil types. Best growth is in soil with a pH range of 6.5 to 7.5, deep and rich in organic matter. They are hardy from zone 8 to zone 2, with some exceptions…” (from uri.edu factsheet) –just the right conditions at the UAF Community Garden!