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Rock’s UK Form (Highdown)
This plant was supplied to me as P. Ice Storm, a pure white Tree Peony. Unusually for this supplier a mistake had been made and I found myself with a rather splendid, classic “Peony Rockii.” The form is superb and the fully open flower measures 22cm. I have studied the supplier’s catalogue and book and began to suspect the true identity of my plant because they offer ‘Rock’s UK’ and ‘Rock’s US’. However, as anyone who has ever studied the genesis of the original imports to Britain and America will know, the plants located at various places in these countries differ and almost certainly seem to be what we now call ‘Gansu Mudan hybrids.’ Dr. Will Mclewin of Phedar Nurseries has researched this rather involved matter and has written extensively on it in his book ‘Peony Rockii and Gansu Mudan’. I have studied his photographs of the Highdown plant and most revealingly, read his extremely (one might say, minutely) detailed description of the flowers as they develop, even down to the varying colours of the inner and outer filaments. These identifying factors together with the changing colour of the foliage as it develops (also described by Dr.McLewin) have completely persuaded me that my plant corresponds exactly to it. Dr.McLewin’s description can be found on pp 62-63 of his book. Plant Source: Riviere.
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