Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Chinese Peony, Garden Peony
Paeonia lactiflora 'Felix Crousse'

Family: Paeoniaceae
Genus: Paeonia (pay-OHN-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: lactiflora (lak-tee-FLOR-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Felix Crousse

» View all varieties of Peonies

4 vendors have this plant for sale.

10 members have or want this plant for trade.


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)
USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring


Other details:
Flowers are fragrant
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Flowers are good for cutting

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

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By lmelling
Thumbnail #1 of Paeonia lactiflora by lmelling

By amulet
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By zone5girl
Thumbnail #3 of Paeonia lactiflora by zone5girl

By amulet
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By burningrome
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By Terri1948
Thumbnail #6 of Paeonia lactiflora by Terri1948

By Terri1948
Thumbnail #7 of Paeonia lactiflora by Terri1948

There are a total of 8 photos.
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3 positives
1 neutral
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral hckybreath On Jul 1, 2013, hckybreath from Keyport, NJ wrote:

Although having a dozen Peonies in my garden; only Karl Rosenfeld would bloom; and that was in mid-season Now I'm trying to remedy the situation by installing early, mid, and late varieties;
" Felix Crouse " seems to be cited as a dependable, late season red; however those remaining in nurseries appear to have weak stems and some disease on their leaves. I know there is a great variety of growth in Peonies and wonder if this is just the result of being in a pot too long ?
I should also say here, there is a great variety of Peony plant materiel in the local garden centers ( 7/1/2012 ) ; some seem to be from divisions of only a year or two healthy, but not very large clumps ; Will they take a few years to bloom ? ; some have been over-wintered in their pots for several years with large clumps;
I bought a Sarah Bernhardt ( 6/15/2013 ) with two large blooms and four large buds; I stuck the pot on my porch and it dependably bloomed for over 10 days; I clipped each bloom after it was almost spent and it held another 3 days inside a vase with water; when it was finished I planted in my new Peony bed; it was almost rootbound in the pot and had some dsiease on it's leaves but hopefully with some pampering it will again put on a show next year; this time in the ground.
With this experience I made my rounds of local garden centers looking for other types; I remain stuck on Felix Crousse because it is one of the few late reds; I just worry about the strength of it's stems and the conditions of it's leaves; Perhaps it needs a Peony ring to hold up it's foliage until fall..................

Positive LauraSteele On Jun 11, 2011, LauraSteele from Fort Wayne, IN wrote:

Love this peony. It was my grandmother's favorite one out of our dozen or so varieties in the back yard. Deep rich red with a hint of blue, almost a raspberry red. Smooth edged petals, very full double flowers on a smallish (18" - 24") bush that doesn't produce lateral buds. Will take a bit of shade in the afternoon and still bloom. Hybridized and introduced by Crousse in 1881.

Negative otter47 On Mar 27, 2010, otter47 from Livermore, CA wrote:

I've tried 3 times to grow herbaceous peonies in Calfornia, without success. I have seen them grow and bloom well in East Bay communities -- Livermore, Pleasanton, and Danville, CA (all in Sunset zone14), and I note that in these gardens the peonies were grown in beds by themselves. Because peonies don't get much winter chill here, they are not as large and strong a plant they are in colder winter climates. Where I grew up in Ohio, peonies were among the most iron-clad hardy and reliable perennials, succeeding in gardens where no one cared for them. There, old standard varieties like Felix Crousse or Festiva Maxima would thrive in neglected yards. I suspect that my failure in California is partly due to the peonies being overwhelmed by other plants. Next time I try one, I will plant it in a large container and locate this in the coldest part of my garden. I suspect that some varieties of herbaceous peonies need less winter chilling than others, so if anyone knows which varieties prosper in California, I would appreciate this knowledge.

Positive Tokoro On Feb 24, 2009, Tokoro from Sacramento, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

I love peonies, but have always thought my zone 9 / 8b was too warm for success. But my friend Bob Hamm, who has run the AIDS benefit plant sales here for many years, assures me that this will thrive in Sacramento.

It is breaking dormancy now, with a large number of beautiful shoots. It has had adequate slug protection (these critters are the bane of the warm climate gardeners).

I'm starting with a positive, though it's really "no data yet," because I'm a positive-thinking gardener!

I'll report back when I have some real experience.

Positive lmelling On Oct 28, 2004, lmelling from Ithaca, NY (Zone 5b) wrote:

Felix Crousse is a double flowering garden peony. I would call the color nearer to deep hot pink or rasberry rather than red with darker ceners and ruffled, silver-margined petals. It likes well drained soil but a lot of water in spring. Flowers here in zone 5 about the first through third week in June.

Great cut flower and good for drying for arrangements.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Sacramento, California
Patoka, Illinois
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Gardiner, Maine
Andover, Minnesota
Stockett, Montana
Keyport, New Jersey
Ithaca, New York
Painesville, Ohio
Knoxville, Tennessee
Arlington, Virginia
Richmond, Virginia

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