An unexpected peony

The herbaceous peonies were obvious, big and robust plants in borders and along fence edges.  They're just starting to show a bit of petal;  they'll be opening soon.

But the surprise was the already open peonies arising from woody stems -- tree peonies or shrubby ones -- as we cut back an overgrown Aronia near the small animal barn (where the chickens live).

Amazing.  I haven't really paid attention to peonies in the past, but these flowers are rather extraordinary.  They're the size of salad plates. And I notice that the former owner had a photo of one included on a page of his antique listings -- nice.

Two sauce-size peonies
This photo has an unfortunate highlight, thanks to my sloppy iPhone technique, and the scale is hard to read, as the flowering branches had drooped down (to escape the shade of the Aronia, I suppose, but -- remarkable.