The trees have a few differences and many similarities due to their close relation. Some Japanese Peonies actually are exactly the same as Chinese peonies but with Japanese names. The Japanese tree peonies were brought to Japan in the early sixteen hundreds. Japan renamed a lot of these trees and also changed the way that some of them grow including but not limited to a different aesthetic design and fragrance differences.
Chinese Tree Peony
This flower was originally grown only for the emperor. There are about forty varieties of Chinese tree peonies available for purchase in the United States. These plants are traditionally thought of as an exotic plant and now are readily available for any garden with the right climate. They have flowers that grow with stem counts of three to four. They are fragrant and have multiple colors available.
This peony was brought to Japan from China in the early sixteen hundreds. The Japanese in an aesthetic decision decided to grow the flowers in stem counts of one or two. The plant was also altered to create little or no scent from the blooms. There are only about six varieties available and only three shades of blooms. This is a far cry from the Chinese variety that boasts almost 40 different varieties and colors.