This Peony Farm Is a Dream for Cottage Garden Enthusiasts

The Local Bouquet is a floral business dedicated to using 100-percent local and American-grown flowers.

Peonies from the Local Bouquet
Photography by Maaike Bernstrom

Text by Bethany Adams

Set against the backdrop of a 3-acre peony farm in Rhode Island, The Local Bouquet’s farmer florist class Perfect Peonies is designed not only to teach attendees everything they want to know about the popular bloom but also to help build community. “I think peonies just have a place in people’s hearts,” says Mary Kate Kinnane, owner of The Local Bouquet, a floral business dedicated to using 100-percent local and American-grown flowers.

Peonies from the Local Bouquet
Photography by Maaike Bernstrom
When arranging peonies, Mary Kate Kinnane suggests selecting flowers in different stages of bloom, from just beginning to loosen to being fully blown open. “It just gives you—yourself but also all of your guests coming into your home—that chance to see the peony in all of its stages in bloom,” she says.

In an attempt to raise awareness of the field-to-vase movement, Mary Kate teamed up with local peony farmers Anne Kubik and David Rockermann for one part of a three-part series designed to give cottage garden enthusiasts, floral professionals, and everyone in between a chance to expand their skill set and fill their gardens with bursts of color all summer long.

Peonies from the Local Bouquet
Photography by Maaike Bernstrom

During the course, attendees can visit the farms where the flowers are grown and get their questions answered. “You’re able to connect with the farmer, you’re able to see those answers live right in front of you, and you’re able to then turn that into practice in your own gardens,” Mary Kate says.

Peonies from the Local Bouquet
Photography by Maaike Bernstrom

From ‘Coral Sunset’ to ‘Mahogany’, attendees have the chance to work with over 30 peony varieties featuring a wide range of rich and cheerful hues. “We definitely want them to walk away with some good solid knowledge about how to care for their peony plants,” Mary Kate says. “Whether they have one or two in their backyard or they have a huge collection, we want them to be thinking about more organic and sustainable ways to care for that plant.”

To learn more about the Perfect Peonies workshop and the entire series of classes, visit thelocalbouquet.com.
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