Peonies forum→Cultivating larger peony blossoms

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Name: Jerry
Salem, IL
Charter ATP Member
May 6, 2010 2:56 PM CST
I make it a practice to remove all the side buds, leaving one terminal bud per stem. First, to eliminate wasted energy on a bud unlikely to come to full bloom and, secondly, to produce the largest blooms. One of my burgundy-rose peonies has blooms consistently 6 inches in diameter. The white/pinks of last year were also huge. A 6 or 7 year clump has 30 golf ball size or larger buds so I could not see the point of nurturing the small side buds. Does anyone else do this? Some say they leave all buds on to extend the blooming season.

May 6, 2010 4:43 PM CST
If all you are wanting is the larger flower disbudding is the way to go. However if you are wishing to do any peony breeding some times the only usable blooms are the side buds. Some will go as far as removing the central bud and leaving the side ones. The side buds will generally be partial blooms especially on the big doubles and some of the japanese forms. These partial blooms may have useful pollen or carpels where the central bloom is all petals.
Name: Jerry
Salem, IL
Charter ATP Member
May 6, 2010 7:37 PM CST
The size and quality of the flowers are my only goal. From all I can read, it is not uncommon to take 5 or 6 years to bring a pollination to bloom. At my age, by then I would have forgotten what I was trying to accomplish. The simple peonies I like can be bought for $20 or less and bloom the first or second year after planting.
Name: Diann
Lisbon, IA
Charter ATP Member Enjoys or suffers cold winters Cat Lover Region: Iowa Hostas Lilies
May 6, 2010 8:49 PM CST
I don't disbud. I just let my peonies run wild!! Smiling LOL

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