We have put together some guidelines for you to prepare your beds and for planting the roots, to have the best possible chance at successfully growing your peonies.
Planting & Growing Peonies
• Peonies do best where the winters are long & cold. They can handle negative winter temperatures, snow or frost and will survive if temperatures get between 2'C and 5'C for 30-60 days in the winter.
• Peonies do best in morning sun and should be planted so they are in the shade for the afternoon.
• Peonies don't like to be disturbed and although they can be grown in pots they do best in-ground.
Preparing your beds
• Dig over the soil to a depth of 60 cm and remove any clods - generously add some good quality compost and a few handfuls of bone meal.
• Turn in the compost and bone meal making sure the soil is loose and fine. If your soil is heavy clay some sand or perlite can be added to improve drainage.
• If you have acidic or alkaline soils, a good application of lime is recommended to bring the soil to a neutral pH.
• Planting is best done in autumn and winter months once the eyes have formed on the roots and the green foliage has died back.
Planting peony roots
• Roots should be planted 1-2 days after collection to prevent them from drying out. If you are unable to plant them right away, keep them in a box or some newspaper away from direct light.
• Submerge roots in water for 20 minutes to 1 hour before planting.
• Peony roots should be planted in well drained loamy/sandy soil. A neutral pH of 6.7 is best.
• Avoid planting them near trees & shrubs where they will need to compete for food, provide about half a meter either side of the roots.
• Remove your roots from the water and place them in the holes - the eyes should be about 4 cm (two horizontal fingers) below the soil level - don't plant them too deep as they won't flower well if you do. Planting too deep is the biggest mistake that can be made.
• Cover the roots and press down around the root lightly ensuring the root is firmly planted.
• Finally add some mulch (straw / leaves) around the roots to help shelter and protect them as they begin to grow.
• We recommend an application of fungicide straight after planting and again 4 weeks later. This will reduce the risk of fungus and root rot while the roots establish. You can use Funginex or similar systemic fungicide.
Watering & fertilising
• Although peony plants are hardy, they are "English Garden" type plants. Water 2-3 times a week in spring & summer to ensure good flowering (1-2 liters per plant). Peonies can be fertilised with 2-3-4 in spring and again after they have flowered. They don't like to have wet feet, so be sure not to over water. If you see black spots on the leaves, a systemic fungicide should be applied as soon as possible.
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Tanglewood Nursery, Dennis Shepstone Drive, Hilton
Enquiries : 083 384 2815
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