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'Peonies' by Claire Austin

This April, Claire Austin is due to self-publish ‘Peonies’, the most comprehensive and highly illustrated book ever published on one of the world’s best loved flowers. ‘Peonies’ has been 38 years in the making, and is the culmination of a lifetime of growing, exhibiting, selling, photographing and researching peonies around the world.

Published in hardback, ‘Peonies’ is the ultimate guide to peonies with detailed descriptions and beautiful photographs of 350 varieties, categorised by Species, Herbaceous, Tree and Intersectional peonies. Every single one of the 350 has been grown by Claire at some point in her career either in her private gardens, on her hardy plant nurseries (she relocated both 4 times) or as the holder of the National Collection of Hybrid Herbaceous Peonies.

In addition to the extensive A-Z section, there are 9 highly illustrated chapters on Growing peonies; Peonies in the garden; Peonies in history; My peony story; Lactiflora peonies; Garden-worthy species peonies; Hybrid peonies; Intersectional peonies; and Tree peonies.

Bursting with clear, practical advice for experts and beginners alike, the book covers every aspect of successful peony cultivation, and highlights the stand-out varieties for colour, scent, showing, cutting and to withstand wind and shade. Claire advises on perfect peony planting combinations and how to use colour in the border, illustrated in stunning photographs of her private garden in the Welsh Borders.

‘Peonies’ by Claire Austin is now available to pre-order for £25 including post and packaging from

Claire Austin will be opening her gardens and peony fields for the National Garden Scheme on 25th June from 10am to 4pm. Tickets cost £5 per adult (child tickets are free) and are available to pre-book through the NGS website .

About Claire Austin

The daughter of the famous rose breeder, David C.H. Austin, Claire Austin chose to pursue her own passion for perennials and has established her own highly successful mail-order plant nursery, Claire Austin Hardy Plants.

Famed for her medal-winning show exhibits of peonies and bearded irises, including Gold at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, Claire Austin is a highly regarded garden writer. Her earlier titles ‘Claire Austin’s Book of Perennials’ and ‘Irises - A Gardener’s Encyclopaedia both won ‘Reference Book of the Year’ at the Garden Media Guild Awards..

Praise for Claire Austin’s Book of Perennials:

Paula McWaters in Gardens Illustrated: “Claire Austin has horticulture running through her veins and this book is a distillation of all she has learned through hands-on experience over 30 years of perennial plant growing.”

Claudia de Yong, garden designer: “This book will be a great addition for anybody who loves plants and will no doubt become a gardening classic.”

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This story was published on: 26/03/2021

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