Karl Rosenfield Peony: Brief History and a Quick Guide

Last Updated on June 12, 2023 by Real Men Sow

The Karl Rosenfield Peony is one the most dramatic and deeply colored peonies in the garden. They are also very easy to grow. They are herbaceous peonies and have large, deep-red, and fluffy double flowers. These perennial plants can grow up to 32 inches (38 ft) tall and have ornamental green leaves. 

These large blooms, which can grow to 6-7 inches in diameter on established plants, make beautiful cut flowers and bouquet fillers. Karl Rosenfield Peony, a Paeonia lactiflora cultivar, was introduced in 1908 by John Rosenfield.

Brief History of the Karl Rosenfield Peony

Paeonia lactiflora “Karl Rosenfield” was bred and introduced by John Rosenfield in 1908. Rosenfield named his peony cultivar after his son. Rosenfield bred peonies at his greenhouses in West Point and Omaha, Nebraska.

John Rosenfield is a well-known name in the gardening industry for his introduction of dozens upon dozens of peonies, including the Floral Treasure. Even now, the Karl Rosenfield Peony is one of the most popular peonies in American gardens. This peony is often called the Karl Rosenfeld peony because the breeder was originally named “Rosenfeld”, which means “rose field” in German. He then changed it to “Rosenfield.” 

Growth Size

Karl Rosenfield peonies can grow to about 3 feet in height, with a range of 32-38 inches in height. These perennial flowers are medium-sized and look almost like shrubs during the growing season. Karl Rosenfield peonies can be a wonderful choice if you are looking for large flowers, but also beautiful shrub-like foliage.

When Does Karl Rosenfield Peony Bloom?

Karl Rosenfield peonies bloom mid-late spring depending on where they are located and the weather. They will bloom in the middle of spring if the climate is warm. They will bloom in the middle of summer if they are located in areas with colder temperatures.

How Long Does Karl Rosenfield Peony Bloom?

Karl Rosenfield peonies usually bloom for between 7-10 days. However, they can bloom for up to 10 days. These perennial herbaceous herbs bloom once a year, in the spring.

Karl Rosenfield peonies bloom for just a few weeks, but they can look great for the rest of the year. The blooms of the Karl Rosenfield peony are gone after they have finished blooming. The foliage turns green in the fall and winter, adding color to your garden. The leaves become greener and shrink when winter comes. Although the leaves might turn brown when they die for winter, many times they turn red.


Karl Rosenfield peonies sometimes require support, especially when they are in full bloom. After the soil has loosened, you should support the Karl Rosenfield peonies in your garden. The Karl Rosenfield peonies will thrive and grow if you provide support. They will also not drop to the ground if they are supported.

You can use stakes or a peony support ring to hold the blossoms in place. Place the peony support rings under the blooms to keep them from falling to the ground. You can place the peony support rings underneath the blossoms.

Planting Bare Root Karl Rosenfield Peony

Plant a Karl Rosenfield peony’s bare root early in the fall season. It is possible to plant it in the spring but the flowers may not bloom until the following spring depending on how the plant grows. Karl Rosenfeld says peonies don’t thrive if they are moved. So choose your planting location carefully.

Dig a hole twice the size of the root to plant a Karl Rosenfield peony. However, it should not be too deep. Make sure to soak the peony root before you dig the hole. Peony roots can be soaked in clean water for between 20 and 4 hours, depending on how dry they have become.

Place the Karl Rosenfeld peony roots in the hole. Make sure the cream-pink eyes (or flower buds) face upwards towards the sky. Fill the hole with soil and cover it with dirt. You should pack the soil around the roots tightly, but not too hard to prevent them from being damaged. After planting, water the peony well.

Spacing of Karl Rosenfield Peony

Karl Rosenfield peony should be planted at least 2 feet apart. If space is available, you can also plant them farther apart. Karl Rosenfield peonies require plenty of space for their roots to grow without being in contact with other roots. Peonies don’t thrive when they are competing for nutrients with flowers and other plants.

Real Men Sow
Real Men Sow

Hello, I’m Pete and I’m currently based in the west of Scotland, in a small place called Rosneath, where I’m exploring my garden adventures. I personally started gardening around 6 years ago and initially, I started out by growing my favorite fruits and berries, such as strawberries, Raspberries & Gooseberries. Since then I’ve added a lot of vegetables and working closely with my neighbor, it’s been a lot of fun.