Pageant

‘Pageant’ cannot be easily confused with any other Saunders peony.  It blooms very early and the flowers have a very large boss of stamens (Silvia Saunders calls this a “large heart”).  Sometimes these are spoiled by a late frost.

The petal color is a slightly blue-toned pink, causing H. F. du Pont to vanquish it to the cutting garden from the display gardens at Winterthur where he felt its coloration did not match the nearby azaleas.

Cultivar: Pageant
Year: 1941
Seedling No: 12388.
Parentage: 27B: F2 of ((officinalis Rosea Plena X 4992 (4992 = lactiflora X macrophylla)) 
Flower: Color: light pink (blue-toned)
Form: single, 8 petals, open flat form
Blooms: Week 3
Carpels: 2-3, grey, woolly
Stigmas: dark pink
Disc:

pale pink, if any (Silvia Saunders) white, edged pink, obscure

Stamens: filaments light yellow, many stamens
Plant: Habit: upright – spreading in 2021
Foliage color: dark green, shining
Foliage form: lower leaves entire (not lobed)
Height: 48″ (reported); 34″ in 2021
Recommendation: Recommended
Availability: Several specialty nurseries