Welcome Everyone.

Welcome to News From Italy, my blog about our Italian Adventure. Although this blog has now ceased publication I will be continuing to blog and I am sincerely hoping that my many followers here will move with me to Travel Tales blog to follow my next adventures wherever they may take me. The links to my other blogs are:-


I look forward to keeping in touch with you via them, thanks once again for all the support you have given 'News From Italy' over the years.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Peonies - Peonie - Centro Botanico Moutan



At the beginning of the month we visited Centro Botanico Moutan somewhere we have wanted to visit since a friend told us about this Peony Centre a couple of years ago. Of course although it is open all year round for purchases, if one wants to see the peonies in flower timing is of the essence to view this unique collection of Chinese Peonies at their best.
The centre was founded in 1993 and the name ‘moutan’ is a direct translation of the Chinese word for tree peony. The founders had for many years been passionate about peonies and decided to grow a themed garden, this desire grew as they studied the varieties and species available throughout Asia. Importing them to Europe and collecting them in one place whilst studying and promoting their cultivation has today led to this fifteen hectare estate cultivated almost entirely with peonies nestling at the foot of the Cimini mountains in the Viterbo region.
During April and May the estate is open for visitors to stroll amongst the peonies, over 100,000 thousand plants belonging to around 600 different varieties. It is a fantastic display and ones sense of vision and smell are literally bombarded, quite an experience.  I am not sure if our visit was timed for the peak flowering but it was nonetheless impressive.
At prices ranging from Euros 30 to 90 for mature plants these often rare specimens belong to many different species, some of which cannot be found any where else in the world. I have a catalogue of the species but not being an expert on peonies I shall not attempt to try and label my photographs in case I get them wrong. I hope you will enjoy the selection I have chosen to share with you, they were all so stunningly beautiful, the full album of my photos can be viewed at Flickr.com Centro Botanico Moutan. It was very difficult to choose just a few to publish here, so I have concentrated on close ups, more general views of the centre can be seen in my Flickr album here !    











The centres own website is also well worth a visit and is available in English, French and Italian Official Website - Centro Botanico Moutan this is where I gleaned the information quoted in this post and you will also find a lot more detailed information.
You may have noticed that I am experimenting with putting a signature on my photos. I did this via Picnik from Flickr but it is a time consuming process as each photo has to be dealt with individually and saved again within the editing programme. Do any of my photography friends know if there is an easier way to do this, direct to the original maybe? I would be grateful for any advice you may have. By the way none of the photos are edited in any way, apart from the signature addition.
Today I am linking this post up with other garden lovers over at Fishtail Cottage for Cottage Flora Thursday


Cottage Flora Thursday
Welcome to ‘News From Italy’ to the other participants Cottage Flora Thursday, thankyou for calling by. I hope you have found some pleasure here today.

30 comments:

  1. So beautiful! I saw a lady on a bike yesterday, with a very large bunch of peonies on her carrier. They looked lovely too!

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  2. These photos are absolutely stunning.

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  3. WOW! The peonies are fabulous!

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  4. Gorgeous peonies here! The detail is really very good.

    I do my signature in Photoshop CS3, but I shoot in RAW so I do more editing there as well. Not sure if there is an easier way, but if I come across something I will share it with you!

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  5. Ah, peonies! What beautiful photos – I can see why you've wanted to visit and with 100,000 plants! I can't imagine how incredible it must smell! Peonies are so expensive here, too. We have only one that was here when we bought the property. Thank you for the inspiration – you captured terrific detail in your photos.

    As for the watermark signature, I use Lightroom and can add it there before export or you could run an action in Photoshop. Lots of times I do it manually like you have done, though, because I am making a mosaic or something. Good luck and have a lovely weekend!

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  6. What a heavenly place!
    I hope you didn't get an headache with all those scented Peonies!
    xxx

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  7. A friend gave me 2 peonies the other day. After the transplant they look a bit weary but should come back. I don't know any other way to do it but if you google "watermarks" you might get some advice.

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  8. Wow and wow and more wow! These photos are pure magic!

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  9. They are wonderful!! Did you buy any plants for home? Jackie in Surrey.

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  10. Oh Linda, they are so beautiful! You have discovered a stunning place!
    About watermarks you could try to visit this site.
    Have a nice evening.

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  11. Gorgeous photos! I love peonies and actually have a small bouquet of them on my coffee table now. I'm also waiting for my three peony plants to bloom. One of my favorite flowers.

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  12. Beautiful photo's - how did you get so close? thanks so much for linking up to Cottage Flora Thursday's & sharing these beautiful blooms! xoxo, tracie

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  13. These photos took my breath away! I'm just beginning to appreciate tree peonies after my visit to some English country houses and estates and have been trying to photograph and
    write down the names from any labels hiding in the massive amount of leaves at this time of the year. Do you think peonies grow more successfully in your area of Italy?

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  14. How utterly beautiful. I misread at first and thought you'd typed ponies...was a tad confused for a few minutes. That'll teach me to read more carefully. I blame the running eyes. I can't see properly today.
    The colours are fabulous. You have inspired me to try an dplant some in our garden. At the moment I nly seem to have lavendar and salvias...must try harder!
    Thank you for brightening my day. Hope the sun is shining on you.
    Carol XOXO

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  15. Salut Linda, those photos are really great. I've seen quite a few of these in a park here but for some reason I've failed to take pics - so thanks for sharing these :-) I've just noticed what you've said about followers - oops...
    Have a lovely weekend, I hope it's warmer where you are than here :-) xo

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  16. Beautiful blooms! Sorry I have no experience in the signature part.....

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  17. Beautiful!! I don't see many Peonies in so. California, but I remember them from my childhood in the state of Ohio.

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  18. What a neat place. Those photos are just gorgeous.

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  19. Dear Lindy, yes I missed you and noticed you were too quiet on this end, for a while. Glad to see you back!
    I haven't had time to either write on my blog very much or visit my favorite ones. I am hoping to have more time to do the old things I used to do and used to enjoy, but for now I have been just busy.
    My work is going well and that brings me a lot of joy. As soon as I get something "pretty" to show, I will be blogging about. Stay tuned!
    Have a good weekend!

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  20. Hi Linda! Lovely to see your pretty post and pictures. I adore peonies but they never seem to be available for very long here in Brisbane. I think our summers must just get too hot for them.

    Hope you have been well and enjoying a beautiful Italian Summer! The weather is cool here but it's still so pleasant and beautiful.

    Well, I am off to get myself another cup of tea and read some more blogs. I am going to try and get as much blog reading done while hubby and Big Al are at the rugby. Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

    Best wishes always,
    Natasha.

    PS I still haven't bought that book but the school holidays start in about 3 weeks and I am going to try to read it then.
    xo

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  21. These peonies are absolutely gorgeous. I love these photos so much! Thanks for sharing them with us.

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  22. What a delightful place to visit...and to photograph. About the watermarks, I have never seen anything where you can have it applied to the original...I think it would take a mighty special camera to be able to do that (size, font, placement, etc.). I agree that it is a task, but I continue to "mark" my images when I edit in photoshop.

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  23. I think the 1st photo is my fav, but they are all interesting.

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  24. Stunning photographs Linda, I can only guess at how lovely it must have been in the flesh, so to speak. Love Linda x

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  25. Peonies must be among my favourite flowers. I have several varieties in Luxembourg but hestitate to plant them in Positano as I don't know whether they'd survive long periods without water during our absence in summer. Gorgeous pics!

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  26. I love the photos and it sounds like a wonderful place to visit lucky you getting to go there.

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  27. Dear Lindy, thank you for sharing these links!
    Beautiful!

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  28. Stunning photos! I love peonies, but they don't last very long...seems like we get a heavy rain shortly after they bloom and that is the end of them. Nonetheless, I have several in my garden. Have a happy week, LindyLou!
    Joy and blessings, Beth

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  29. I simply love peonies and miss them so much since they don't survive here in the Southern U.S. Your photos are suberb!

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