Since reading Lucinda Rooney's book Bouquets With Personalities, I will never again see my garden flowers in quite the same way. She cleverly notes how flowers exhibit a variety of personalities both in the garden and floral arrangements, and asks us to consider that some flowers are bold and exhibit "type-A" personalities that demand center stage (birds of paradise come to mind). Meanwhile others, she explains, serve as "peacemakers" and "team players" because they support the stars with their shape, color, texture, and variety that enhances the overall harmony of the design. And still, there are a few unpredictable "troublemakers" that are difficult to control, but when used properly, offer a unique richness all their own.
And my beloved peonies? She notes that they, along with garden roses and ranunculus, embody a romantic "gentle strength" whether used alone or in a bouquet. Love that!
"When working with the distinct personalities of flowers,
try to relate even to the difficult ones with grace and candor.
Never try to force a relationship...
Flowers, like people, are wonderful to work with
once you know how to relate to and handle their individuality and purpose".