Dutch-grown Peonies available in the fall season? At nursery Pioenieren in Noordwijkerhout, NL, it is possible! Their dream to enjoy Peonies a little longer became reality. Hence the company name: a combination of Peony and pioneering.
Hidden between the fields and greenhouses of Noordwijkerhout the van of Pioenieren becomes visible. Ton and Jolanda van Eijk are busy loading their Peonies freshly cut from the greenhouse. Their Peony season is far from over. Every autumn they supply fresh, Dutch Peonies. How is that possible? “That’s indeed very unique”, Ton admits. “We are the only ones in the world supplying these types of Peonies at the moment.”
Where the first Peonies appear in the spring and we have to say goodbye to these beautiful flowers again in the summer, Ton and Jolanda thought it would be a nice challenge to extend the Peony season a bit. “We started experimenting in 1999,” says Ton. “With a lot of trial and error, it is getting better and better to supply high-quality Peonies from Dutch soil even after the usual Peony season.”
Ton points to the crates in a row in the greenhouse, where the first cups carefully protrude above the earth. “There are two clods in each crate, from which about eight stems grow,” he says. “These clods have just come out of the cold store, where their growth has been inhibited. Once in the greenhouse, they grow into flowers with beautiful buds within four weeks, ready to be harvested.” Jolanda: “We want to be ready before November when Peonies from Chile are available again.”
A Lot of Knowledge
Early in the morning, as soon as the sun rises, Ton and Jolanda can be found in the greenhouse. Plucking Peonies, checking for caterpillars – who really like the buds – and harvesting on time: the work actually goes on all day long. “We remove the side flowers by hand so that all the energy can go to the main flower. This way we grow a larger main flower. This is a real monks’ job!”
Growing Peonies in the fall is not easy. “It’s really hard work,” admits Jolanda. “Every year we experiment with new varieties and make mistakes, from which we learn more and more. One time, for example, we gave too little water, so that the buds remained too small. You need a lot of knowledge to grow Peonies in this way. That keeps this work exciting.”
Autumn Wedding with Peonies
In total, about 250,000 stems are harvested, Ton estimates. “Our Peonies even end up in New York and Qatar. Peonies do well at events and weddings, which take place in September.” Will you say yes in the autumn – with Peonies from Dutch soil? Your wedding won’t get more exclusive!
Pioeneren Peonies at The Holex Webshop
At the Holex Holland webshop, you can find the Dutch Fall Peonies assortment of Pioeneren. Search for Peony of Paeonia and the offerings will appear! Surprise your customers with these amazing flowers at this time of the year!