Storey staffers and friends share glimpses of what’s flowering in their gardens, yards, and the wide world beyond.

Can we just go head and call June “peony season”? These big-headed blooms, with buds beloved by ants and with tissue paper-like petals, may have a short lifespan. When they’re happening, though, I have a hard time resisting a stop in each yard I pass to appreciate their beauty and acknowledge the fact that summer is around the corner. But limiting this month to a celebration of one kind of flower is to give everything else blossoming short shrift — and there is a lot blossoming right now; not just here in New England but — as you’ll see from this month’s post — across the pond as well. As azaleas fade, irises abound and mock orange’s perfume wafts. We welcome all of it. What’s blooming where you are? — Emily Spiegelman, Digital Content Manager

Deb Burns

Though she normally posts from Williamstown, Massachusetts, Deb’s Bloom Day pictures this month are from her recent journey with her daughter along the Mediterranean, a gift from Storey celebrating her 25 years at the company. The photos show some of what’s blooming in Athens, Aix-en-Provence (France), and the Cinque Terre and Lombardy areas of northern Italy.

balcony garden in athens

Our Air BnB in Athens had lemon, fig,and olive trees on the balcony, plus pots of herbs and geraniums.

pink flowering tree

Walking to the beach (the Aegean Sea) along Poseidon Avenue, we marveled at these stunning trees, but could not ID them then or since. Does anyone recognize them?

Flower delivery Athens

This was taken in the old neighborhood of twisting streets and golden facades just below the Acropolis.

flower market aix-en-provence

This flower market in Aix-en-Provence, southern France, goes from 8 to noon, after which the pavement is washed and out come the café tables, chairs, and umbrellas. From then till evening it’s a gathering place, beneath that wonderful 18th-century building, the Halle aux Grains, or Grain Exchange, with its terrific pediment.

mothers day fete des meres aix en provence

In Aix-en-Provence it was the French Mothers’ Day (La Fête des Mères), a week after ours, and this young rose seller was doing a big business.

smelling jasmine flowers

My daughter Tess inhales the jasmine that pours over a garden wall in Aix-en-Provence.

roses in Italian vineyard

In the Cinqueterre, along the west coast of Italy, roses grow among the vineyards.

poppies in wheat field

In northern Italy, such a beautiful sight: red poppies planted among the wheat, blooming in May.

Ilona Sherratt, Cheshire, Massachusetts

columbine in flower bouquet

flower bouquet

flower bouquet

Zoë Spring, Worthington, Massachusetts

Sweet Cicely

Sweet Cicely

Corey Cusson, Greenfield, Massachusetts

pumpkin flower

Pumpkin flower

Maribeth Casey, Williamstown, Massachusetts



allium flowers

Allium flowers

pink peony

Pink peony

Heather Tietgens, Stamford, Vermont

white potentilla

White potentilla

Jacob’s Ladder

Jacob’s Ladder

double begonia

Double begonia, with perennial geranium in the background

MaryAnn Nøbben, Norway



pink striped flowers

patio garden in bloom

Patio garden in bloom

Carolyn Eckert, Florence, Massachusetts

pink peony profile

Peony from the side

siberian iris

Siberian iris, dusty with pollen

bachelors button

Bachelor’s button, or blue corn flower, crazy hair day

Melinda Slaving, North Adams, Massachusetts

mock orange

Mock orange



potted petunias

Pots in bloom

Debbie Surdam, Hoosick, New York

pink dahlias

Pink dahlias



yellow strawflowers

Yellow strawflowers



Michal Lumsden, Plainfield, Massachusetts

lupine with bumble bee

Lupine with bumble bee



bearded iris

Bearded iris


The last azalea

peony bud with ants


Storey Digital Editors

We are the staff at Storey Publishing — the crafters, cooks, brewers, builders, homesteaders, gardeners, and all-around DIY-ers who make Storey books.

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