Friday, February 17, 2012

How Many Peony Plants Do You Have?

This is a question that we seem to get asked at least a couple of times a year.  We were talking to an acquaintance that we ran into in a restaurant at lunchtime the other day and she asked the question "How many peony plants do you have?"     I always have to stop and think since we are planting new peony plants every year so the number is constantly changing and I seem to lose track as soon as I figure it out.

The truth is right now I have lost count of how many peony plants we actually have.   I knew at one point a few years ago but then we planted more, and more, and I have lost count.
Our son is in 4th grade and always seems to need math help so I always try to find creative ways to get him to learn math without letting him think it is schoolwork.  I learned about this trick from a site I found called Math Goodies and I use it whenever I get a chance. If he thinks its related to homework or schoolwork then he won't want to do it. 

So I got out some old charts of our peony fields that I had made a few years ago by walking around with a clipboard and drawing a sketch of each peony field with the number of rows of plants in each area and asked him to help me tally the numbers up so I could remember how many peony plants we have.  He did a good job in tallying up the first few sheets for me but then found something more interesting to do and left me to do the counting myself.

In the spring once our peony plants are up out of the ground which will probably be mid to late April  I plan to do another inventory by walking around and counting our peony plants.  Until then I will just use the estimate I came up with from my old inventory which is around 6000 plants.

Another question that we are also asked often is how to grow peonies.  This article gives some good background info on growing peonies

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