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May flowers: Peonies

Terra Ceia Farms in Pantego sells thousands of bulbs and bare root perennial plant to gardeners all over the world. But once a year, right around Mother's Day, florists and flower lovers depend on this family owned Beaufort County farm to provide them with gorgeous peonies.

Although the farm was established by the Van Staalduinen family in 1943 with the purpose of growing and selling cut flowers including daffodils and irises, peonies now are the only fresh flowers offered to the public. Most of the Terra Ceia peonies are sold to florists and other retailers.

But from late April until early May, some peony stems may be available for purchase at the farm.

Brenda Credle, who has worked at Terra Ceia for 35 years, usually answers the telephone at the farm and can accept orders and provide details on what's available. If you want peonies, call before you go.

The flowers are sold in bunches of five stems while the peonies are still in tight buds. Colors are white, light pink and dark pink. Follow the care directions provided by Terra Ceia and you will be rewarded with large scented blooms that last a week or more.

Terra Ceia Farms

3810 Terra Ceia Road

Pantego, NC 27860 1-800-858-2852 www.terraceiafarms.com

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