Peonies forum: Tree Peony Roots

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Name: Lily Martagon
Du Page County Illinois (Zone 5a)
Tropicals I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Peonies Region: Illinois Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter
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sgardener
Nov 4, 2012 8:32 AM CST
I purchased two pots of tree peonies on clearance at my local nursery. One of them has herbaceous peony stems that grew with it so I did a little investigation. I washed the roots and found out that there were a lot of eyes growing in it. I understand that tree peonies are grafted and grow on 'nurse' herbaceous peony roots. I think that the herbaceous peony is taking over and eventually the tree peony will die as one of the woody stems is already dead. What do you think? Should I just leave it alone and let mother nature take care of it or should I do an intervention?

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Name: Paul
Utah (Zone 5b)
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Paul2032
Nov 4, 2012 3:50 PM CST
I had a tree peony that reverted to the root stalk. The herbaceous root was a tall single pink that took over. I like it so it is still earning its spot. A neighbor has a lovely single white that is reverting also. I think it is much like many grafted roses that occasionally revert. See what it looks like next year.......
Paul Smith Pleasant Grove, Utah
Name: Jerry
Salem, IL
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Oldgardenrose
Nov 4, 2012 4:15 PM CST
You don't say whether they are fresh out of the pots or if they had been planted. The best published information recommends the tree peony be planted several inches deep so the herbaceous roots will nourish the tree peony graft but will be too deep to grow stems independently. The tree peony graft union will grow its own roots as the herbaceous roots die out. Some of the members on this forum are relatively experts with tree peonies and can shed more details.
Name: Lily Martagon
Du Page County Illinois (Zone 5a)
Tropicals I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Peonies Region: Illinois Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter
Region: United States of America Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Lilies Irises Hostas
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sgardener
Nov 5, 2012 9:54 AM CST
Paul, so it is common for TPs to revert. I will leave it alone and see what it will look like come spring.

Jerry, they are fresh out of the pot. I will plant it deep and see if it will grow its own roots and will also see what will happen to the herbaceous root growths.

Thank you both for your inputs.
Name: Jerry
Salem, IL
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Oldgardenrose
Nov 5, 2012 10:39 AM CST
The bud graft union is the key factor for depth. It should be planted probably 4 to 6 inches deep in order to form its own roots. Pinch or clip all the herbaceous eyes off the roots if they can be identified as 'non-tree buds'.
Name: Calin
Weston-super-mare UK (Zone 7b)
Bulbs Lilies Plant and/or Seed Trader
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fixpix
Nov 7, 2012 1:45 AM CST
If that was MINE, I think I'd try to separate bits of the herbaceous and plant separately (just curious to see what comes out of those buds).
:)
Name: Lily Martagon
Du Page County Illinois (Zone 5a)
Tropicals I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Peonies Region: Illinois Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter
Region: United States of America Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Lilies Irises Hostas
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sgardener
Nov 7, 2012 4:34 AM CST
I did some reasearch and found out that the TP has no roots of its own yet.
http://crickethillgarden.wordpress.com/
All of the eyes that are growing are herbaceous. The plant is already planted deep and will dig it this weekend. I will try to clip some of the eyes and separate the others.

Name: Diann
Iowa (Zone 5a)
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Ticker
Nov 8, 2012 2:06 PM CST

Moderator

Go ahead and plant it, but plant the bud graft a good 10 to 12 inches deep. Also, cut off the herbaceous stalks that have already started. You want to get the nurse root down far enough that it won't send up new shoots. Your TP will grow new roots over the winter and will eventually exhaust that nurse root. Smiling
Name: Lily Martagon
Du Page County Illinois (Zone 5a)
Tropicals I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Peonies Region: Illinois Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter
Region: United States of America Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Lilies Irises Hostas
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sgardener
Nov 11, 2012 5:38 AM CST
I dug up the rhizomes and made the decision to let the TP go since it is hanging on by a thread. I counted 22 herbaceous eyes and I think they are worth saving. Thanks everyone.

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Name: Calin
Weston-super-mare UK (Zone 7b)
Bulbs Lilies Plant and/or Seed Trader
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fixpix
Nov 12, 2012 1:18 AM CST
Hmmm, SAD!
Around here, herbaceous are everywhere, it's the "trees" that people seek :)
Name: Lily Martagon
Du Page County Illinois (Zone 5a)
Tropicals I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Peonies Region: Illinois Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter
Region: United States of America Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Lilies Irises Hostas
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sgardener
Nov 12, 2012 4:23 AM CST
Hi Calin,

I know but as you can see, the TP is almost dead. That plant is part of the 13 pots of peonies I rescued. 2 TPs and 11 HPs.
The HPs are common cultivars like Duchess de Nemours, Kansas, Karl R., Sarah B. Paula F., and Mr. Elie. Smiling

Here is the other TP.
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Name: Calin
Weston-super-mare UK (Zone 7b)
Bulbs Lilies Plant and/or Seed Trader
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fixpix
Nov 13, 2012 2:23 AM CST
Well, I hope this one makes it!
I got only two TPs, same kind, there was no cultivar name when I bought them about 2 years ago and so far no blooms.
Well, I had some scattered buds but somehow they never opened.
And the HPs, I got about 3-4 kinds, but over here, I just know them by colors. White, light pink, dark pink...
Name: Lily Martagon
Du Page County Illinois (Zone 5a)
Tropicals I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Peonies Region: Illinois Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter
Region: United States of America Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Lilies Irises Hostas
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sgardener
Nov 13, 2012 7:55 AM CST
I hope so too!

I also have 2 TPs, a lot of the HPs and 2 Itohs. My TPs have no cultivar names either. I got them last fall and both of them gave me 3 blooms each.
I started adding peonies in my garden in fall of last year . All of them bloomed last spring except for Blaze from Van Engelen.

I hope your TPs will bloom for you next year and please share photos of your pink, white and dark pink peonies.

Here are my TPs.
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Name: Calin
Weston-super-mare UK (Zone 7b)
Bulbs Lilies Plant and/or Seed Trader
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fixpix
Nov 14, 2012 1:39 AM CST
Wow. Cool ones!
I myself like the second one. Simply based on the color :)
I checked the TPs and they seem to be full of red buds... so they are doing ok...

IF I find pics I will post some with the HPs.
Name: Lily Martagon
Du Page County Illinois (Zone 5a)
Tropicals I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Peonies Region: Illinois Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter
Region: United States of America Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Lilies Irises Hostas
Image
sgardener
Nov 14, 2012 7:40 AM CST
I like the second one too. The first one does not fully open but the blooms are huge.

Hope to see you post pics of your TPs when they bloom.

Alana
Nov 16, 2012 8:39 PM CST
Earlier this year a lady sent me a picture of the second one wanting a name but have been unable to locate the name. Her's was very old. It is nice to see another one of the same plant.
AH
Name: Lily Martagon
Du Page County Illinois (Zone 5a)
Tropicals I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Peonies Region: Illinois Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter
Region: United States of America Container Gardener Plant and/or Seed Trader Lilies Irises Hostas
Image
sgardener
Nov 18, 2012 7:24 AM CST
When these two were acquired, they were simply labeled Paeonia suffruticosa. I too have been looking for their names but with no success. Will look for older cultivars on my next search. Thanks.

nguyenvanm
Jun 12, 2016 3:19 PM CST
Good morning sir

I need to buy the ROOTS of White Peonies such as=
-White Amalia Olson
-White Bowl of Cream
- Duchess de NeMours
If you have one of them; Please let me know and I ask you= May
I pay by CHECK..???

graycrna4u
Jun 13, 2016 5:58 AM CST
When tree peonies are not planted deep enough, the herbaceous root stock will sprout and take over the plant killing the tree portion. This is not a reverting plant, but an incorrectly planted tree peony. It is best to wait until fall when the plant is dormant to dig it up and replant deeper. Until then, pinch off any herbaceous growth and do not let it grow. When I first started growing tree peonies, I had one plant (my first) that persistently put up herbaceous roots. Eventually, I got so frustrated I dug it up (in July) and used a saw to cut off the majority of the herbaceous rootstock. I replanted the remains deeper and I planted the herbaceous rootstock I cut off (if it has eyes, it will grow). Both are happy individual plants now. If the tree peony portion of your plant has any roots at all replant. You may lose what is above ground now, but hopefully the tree peony roots will put up new growth the next year. I now have 12 tree peonies that are the crown jewels of my garden. But they are fickle and temperamental plants that don't like to be messed with once in the ground. The best advice on growing tree peonies is you have to have patience with them, but eventually the patience will be rewarded. Good luck.

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