peonies - Knowledgebase Question

Thornwood, Ne
Avatar for bennie35gray
Question by bennie35gray
July 7, 2010
I live north of NYC. I need to move some peonies around - too shady. When can I do that? Any special hints? How do I divide some really large ones?

Answer from NGA
July 7, 2010
Peonies are traditionally moved in the fall, but they can also be moved in very early spring, although this will sacrifice the current year's bloom. Since it's already mid-summer, wait until frost nips the tops of the plants and they die down. This will signal the peonies that it's time to go dormant. At that time you can safely dig and divide the roots to make several smaller plants. Each fleshy root division should have at least 3 to 5 "eyes." The "eyes" actually look more like pink noses and are the shoots for the next season.

The "eyes" should be planted about one to two inches deep. If planted too deeply, the plant will produce foliage and no flowers. Plants should be spaced about 2 to 3 feet apart. Mulch with shredded bark or pine needles in early winter.

Next spring they will grow and flower nicely for you. Enjoy!

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