A 100-year-old field of gorgeous peonies is blooming now at Eden Prairie’s Cummins-Phipps-Grill House.
The flowers, in colors ranging from flaming fuschia to pale pink to delicate white, have been enjoyed every June by generations of Eden Prairie residents.
The garden was originally planted by former resident Harriet Phiipps around 1920 on the east side of this historic property, which was home to several Eden Prairie families.
In a 1980 interview, former house resident Mildred Grill remembered, “The peony bed has been there for over 60 years. Mother put in over 500 plants. There wasn’t another bed like it in the county. She sold flowers in season.”
Longtime Eden Prairie resident Geri Martin says she has visited the peony garden once or twice every June for the past several years. “It’s one of my favorite things to do in the month of June,” she said. “It kind of feels like a hidden gem that not very many people know about. It’s just beautiful.”
The next few days will be the ideal time to visit the garden, as many of the plants are still covered in buds and will bloom this week. Martin noted that this is much later than in past years. “Usually by June 4 they’re in full bloom,” she said.
The garden is tucked away behind the house and surrounded by trees, making it a quiet and restful place to enjoy the flowers, read a book on a bench, or simply enjoy being in nature.
The property, now owned by the City of Eden Prairie and leased by the Eden Prairie Historical Society, is located at 13600 Pioneer Trail near Staring Lake.
Admission is free. Picking or cutting the plants is prohibited by city code, but visitors can still take away photos and memories of the gorgeous blossoms.
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