Love, Business & Blooms: A Look at the Period Historical Drama “Flourished Peony”

In an Upcoming Historical Period Drama Flourished Peony (国色芳华) Yang Zi and Li Xian reunite in the lead roles. The drama is adapted from the web novel “Guo Se Fang Hua” (国色芳华) by Yi Qian Chong (意千重) and is directed by Ding Zi Guang.

For those unversed, the duo starred in the romantic-sports C-drama ‘Go Go Squid S1’ in 2019, wherein Yang Zi portrayed the role of Tong Yan, an IT genius and part-time online singer who found herself attracted to the cold and indifferent Han Shang Yan (played by Li Xian), a former legend in the CTF cyber-security esports world, in their very first meeting.

The duo, Yang Zi and Li Xian have good friends since their previous collaboration on ‘Go Go Squid,’ and have consistently exchanged birthday wishes on Weibo for the past six years. In addition, Li Xian and Yang Zi were classmates during their college days at the Beijing Film Academy.

Flourished Peony – Plot Introduction, Release Date, Cast

Apart from the two main leads, the drama features familiar faces like Wei Zheming, Zhang Ya Qin, Tu Song Yan, Tong Meng Shi, Guan Yue, Xu Ling Yue, and more in the supporting roles.

On April 18, 2023, the show participated in the 2023 Capital TV Program Spring Promotion Conference and released a concept poster showcasing beautiful peonies in pink which are in lush blooms, showing their large and fragrant blossoms accompanied by two protagonists Mu Dan/He Wei Fang (Yang Zi) and Jiang Changyang (Li Xian).

flourished peony chinese drama
  • Episodes: 40
  • Genre: Business, Romance, Historical
  • Starring: Yang Zi, Li Xian
  • Director: Ding Zi Guang
  • Screenwriter: Zhang Yuan Ang
  • Original Platform: Hunan TV, Mango TV
  • Filming Period: January 2, 2024-
  • Release Date: 2025

So, What is Flourished Peony About?

He Wei Fang or Mu Dan is the beautiful, and talented daughter of a merchant. Somehow, she’s been quite weak & poor in health since childhood. Later, she married off to a noble family only for business transactions.

But her marriage broke soon as the couple found each other incompatible (…He Wei Fang’s ex-husband is played by Wei Zhe Ming). Afterward, she boldly decided to seek a life of her own.

He Wei Fang is not only good good-looking girl but also an expert in peony cultivation including business acumen.

Yang Zi in Flourished Peony
Yang Zi as He Wei Fang/ Mu Dan

She ventures into the bustling city of Chang’an and establishes her own Peonies business. There she starts working with Jiang Chang Yang (played by Li Xian), a court official.

Li Xian in Flourished Peony
Xian as court official Jiang Chang Yang

As her business expands, she attracts a diverse group of women. Each with their own struggles and aspirations! She welcomes them under her wing. She provides them with opportunities to learn valuable skills and helps to secure their freedom and happiness. This not only helps Wei Fang to flourish in her business but also creates a sense of empowerment & friendship.

Inspired by Jiang Chanyang’s loyalty to the country, He Weifang decides to expand her business horizons. She looks into areas that directly benefit the common people.

Also, As He Weifang and Jiang Chanyang’s paths intertwine, interestingly both develop a secret crush on each other. Together, they face life’s trials and tribulations.

Throughout their journey especially He Wei Fang, she faces several challenges from overcoming societal prejudices to dealing with the treacherous world of business and politics.

Do you think her strong willpower and support from Jiang Chanyang will put all those obstacles aside and make her journey fruitful and worthwhile? Will they be able to pass every challenge that comes their way? What do you think?

To know the answer, we’ll have to wait until the series gets released. 😊

Overall:

‘Flourished Peony’ is about He Wei Fang’s arduous journey to independence and transformation. From the plotline above, this show is gonna be an INSPIRATIONAL story. The viewers will be able to witness Wei Fang’s desire for growth & recognition for her talent in cultivating rare peonies, along with financial prosperity through her own business in the given period.

Additionally, she will not only achieve her dreams but will also aim to empower other women and contribute to society in a meaningful way. By doing so, she’ll defy societal limitations set for women at the time.

Her resilience and resourcefulness are seen as key strengths that will help her overcome the challenges she might face. Also, the support from Jiang Chanyang is another crucial factor for her success.

Well…Can we expect this to be similar to ‘A Dream of Splendor’? Of course, not story-wise, but both are set in different historical periods and will be focusing on women’s empowerment. The difference is that ‘A Dream of Splendor’ is about the tea business and is set in the Northern Song Dynasty, while ‘Flourished Peony’ will be on the importance of Peonies and their value from the Tang Dynasty.

Flourished Peony Production Details

Ding Zi Guang is a renowned director for his works like Meet Yourself (2023), Go Ahead (2020), and Find Yourself (2020). Most of these shows are critically acclaimed & loved by viewers.

‘Flourished Peony’ marks his first project in the historical genre. We’re still not sure, how he’s gonna perform, but considering that all his previous works were centered on family, growth, and societal issues, we can expect this to be another promising project from him.

Next, The screenwriter behind this project is Zhang Yuan Ang, best known for her works like Ashes of Love (2018), Ultimate Note (2020), Immortal Samsara (2022), and more.

As the Flourished Peony is set in the Tang Dynasty, the costume is designed by Chen Tong Xun. His previous designs in the shows include The Untamed (2019), Lost You Forever (2023), The Legend Of Shen Li (2024), The Wolf (2020), Douluo Continent (2021), and more. Designer Chen Tong Xun is one of the best-known designers in the entertainment industry.

Judging from all these talented people working together, Flourished Peony is expected to bring something valuable to the table.

When Will Chinese Drama ‘Flourished Peony’ Be Released?

Flourished Peony is expected to premiere in the first half of 2025. After the drama is premiered it will be available on Hunan TV (TV Station) and stream online on Mango TV.

While waiting for Flourished Peony to release you can watch Yang Zi and Li Xian’s Modern Romance drama Go Go Squid here.

Please note: The above plot discussion is from the original novel “Guo Se Fang Hua” (国色芳华). As it is an adaptation, there might be some changes or modifications in the live adaptation.

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