In November, Fu Zhenglin retrieved two boxes of flower cuttings that had been shipped from the Netherlands and took them to Luoyang, Henan province. They contained a new species of peony, which he aimed to plant and study in his garden.
As chairman of Luoyang Shenzhou Peony Co, a major flower growing enterprise, Fu has dealt with peonies for more than three decades. He is so familiar with the flowers that he can identify some species by smell.
Fu has built peony plantations in Seattle, Washington, in the United States; in Sao Paulo, Brazil; and in the Netherlands. His fresh-cut peonies have been sold in the US, Australia, the European Union and Southeast Asia.
“Australia is strict on imported fresh flowers, but we have managed to export thousands of peonies there since 2016,” Fu said. “In the busy season, we can cut about 30,000 to 50,000 fresh peonies every day.”