“I’m always looking for new and strong peony varieties to add to my assortment.”
Harry van Dongen has the touch. While studying at HAS Larenstein, he started cultivating peonies for its perennials. The small plot of land where he started out on has grown immensely since then. In 2000, he decided to add flower cultivation to his arsenal.
Harry has a trick up his sleeve; he creates his own starting material. This allows him to cultivate peonies of the best quality. Varieties such as Florence Nicholls, Pillow Talk and Reine Hortense were reintroduced by Harry in the Netherlands after years of absence. He grows about 80 varieties for their cuttings. A small part is used for their flowers.
Van Dongen distinguishes himself with his special varieties, often exclusively found on his land. He is a passionate grower who’s always looking for new varieties and enjoys putting them on the market. The knowledge that is obtained during breeding is passed on to growers that buy his creations. All kinds of factors – cutting stage, vase life, production – are extensively tested on his fields to determine if a new variety can be successfully cultivated.
The peony market has been growing these last few years, not least because of the expanding range of varieties. The introduction of new peony varieties attracts curiosity, which in turn increases the number of potential buyers. And that’s great news for everybody that loves peonies. We, at My Peony Society, are big fans of Harry’s work and couldn’t be more happy to be in business together!