Golden Oldies-Part Four

We have already talked about peony types, general growing and peony care as well as trouble shooting. Finally here are a few extra peony tips to help you grown big beautiful peonies to enjoy for many many years.

Secret Tips for growing the best Peonies with Sensible Gardening


If you really want the largest peony blooms ever, or perhaps you are entering a garden show, prune out a few of the side shoots in the early spring. You will naturally end up with fewer blooms but they will be bigger. With less flower bud production the plant will have more energy to give those buds that are left, producing larger flowers.

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As your flowers fade keep them pruned off regularly. This will make your plant much more attractive and prevent the production of seed heads which depletes the plants energy. If you want to try growing peonies from seed then leave one or two seed heads behind but be prepared to be patient.

Peony seed head with Sensible Gardening

If unknowingly you moved a large peony clump without dividing it first your transplant will not likely respond well. Better to lift it again, divide carefully and replant. Do this in the fall. I feel peonies are best left alone as dividing them is difficult and sets the plant back several years.

Choose a selection of peony cultivars with different blooming times to increase your overall garden blooming time. Blooms generally begin in mid May.

White peony with Sensible Gardening

If you should decide to divide your peony ensure that each new plant has at least three to five eyes and replant the divisions as soon as possible.

Peony flowers make great cut flowers. It is best to cut the bloom at the loose bud stage as it will open and last much longer than if cut in full bloom.  When cutting the stems do not go down too far, just about two or three leaves down. When you remove too many leaves from the plant you weaken it. Be sure to cut your peony stems in the morning for best results.

Peonies in a vase with Sensible Gardening

To enjoy your blooms even longer, peony flowers dry exceptionally well. Simple pick stems before the centre of the bloom is fully open and hang upside down to air dry for about one week.

If it’s important to you that your peonies are sweetly fragrant ( I prefer that they are ), watch which cultivars you choose. Unfortunately not all peonies are fragrant.

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Secret Tips for growing the best Peonies with Sensible Gardening

To learn more about this wonderful plant read my other Peony posts:

Golden Oldies Part One / Types of Peonies

Golden Oldies Part Two / How to Plant & Care for Peonies

Golden Oldies Part Three / Common Problems with Peonies

(some photos from pixabay) (some links go to my affiliate Amazon account)