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The peony, sometimes known as a paeony, is a flowering plant of the genus Paeonia, which is the sole genus in the Paeoniaceae family. Asia, Europe, and Western North America are all home to peonies. Scientists disagree over how many species can be recognized, with estimates ranging from 25 to 40, however the current agreement is 33. The interspecies connections must be explained further.
The majority are herbaceous perennial plants ranging in height from 0.25 to 1 metre (1″3 ft), although some are woody shrubs ranging in height from 0.25 to 3.5 metres (1″11 ft). In late spring and early summer, they feature complex, deeply lobed leaves and big, frequently fragrant blooms in a variety of hues ranging from purple and pink to red, white, and yellow. The flowering period of the flowers is generally about 7″10 days.
In temperate climates, peonies are a popular garden plant. Herbaceous peonies are also widely available as cut flowers, however they are usually only accessible in late spring and early summer.
All Paeoniaceae plants are herbaceous perennials or deciduous shrubs with large store roots and thin water and mineral-gathering roots. Because the crown generates adventitious buds, some species are caespitose (tufted), and others contain stolons. They have big compound leaves with anomocytic stomata and no glands or stipules. New growth arises from scaly buds on the preceding flush or from the rootstock’s crown in woody plants. At the end of the stalk, the huge bisexual blooms are typically solitary.
Few more blooms emerge in the axils of the leaves in P. emodi, P. lactiflora, P. veitchii, and many of the cultivars to which they contributed. At night or when the sky is gloomy, flowers close. Each flower has 3-7 stiff free sepals and 5-8, but rarely up to 13 free petals, and is surrounded by a number of bracts that may form an involucre. However, several of these categories are intergraded, making it difficult to assign them, and the number of pieces may vary. There are many (50″160) free stamens with anthers connected to the filaments at their base, sagittate in form, open with longitudal slits on the outer side, and free pollen grains with three slits or holes and two cells.
A more or less conspicuous, lobed disc is within the circle of stamens, and it is assumed that it does not excrete nectar. A varied number (1-15) of distinct carpels exist inside the disk, each with a very short style and a decurrent stigma. Each of them matures into a dry fruit (known as a follicle), which opens with a longitudinal suture and contains one or more big fleshy seeds. Annual growth is predetermined: if a shoot’s developing tip is removed, no new buds will form that season.
Friedrich K.L. Rudolphi coined the term “Paeoniaceae” in 1830, following Friedrich Gottlieb Bartling’s idea in the same year. A few years before, the family had been given other names. The family’s makeup has changed throughout time, but it has always included Paeonia and one or more genera that are currently classified as Ranunculales
Paeonia has long been thought to be the closest relative to Glaucidium, and some recent research has backed up this theory. Molecular phylogenetic investigations, on the other hand, have definitely shown that Glaucidium belongs to the Ranunculaceae family and order Ranunculales, whereas Paeonia belongs to the unrelated Saxifragales order.