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Ask The Experts

Why aren’t my herbaceous peonies blooming?

  • Young plants – peony plants can sometimes take up to 3 or 4 years to produce blooms
  • Small divisions – if a plant was recently divided sometimes it takes longer to produce blooms
  • Poor nutrition – peonies are heavy feeders and like heavy soils with some clay.  If you plant a peony in sandy or poor soil it will require...
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Why are there ants on my peonies?

Ants are attracted to and eat the sweet nectar secreted by the peony bud.  Ants do not harm the plants, and the plants do not require ants to open. 
Before taking peony flowers into your house, you can turn them upside-down in a bucket of water to get the ants off.

When is the best time to plant peonies?

Peonies do best when planted in the fall.  They grow most of their roots in the fall, so it makes the most sense to let peonies have this time to establish before they endure the heat of summer.  Peonies are tough and will usually survive spring planting, but the plant may experience a higher level of stress for the first year. Please see the...

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What do we fertilize our peonies with at Nichols Arboretum?

We currently do not fertilize our peony plants.  However, a...

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How do you transplant a peony?

Peonies transplant better when you divide them.  Do this in the fall for best results!  First, dig up the plant.  Start digging a good 18 inches away from the crown of the plant.  Dig in circles around the plant, going deeper and deeper until you can gently lift the root ball out of the ground.  Prying the peony out of the...
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Why are there empty spots in the Peony Garden?

We have removed diseased peonies from the Peony Garden.  A cover crop was planted and tilled under to add organic matter to the soil.  After the peony bloom, heirloom annuals are planted in the empty spaces to add color and interest over the summer.  New, healthy peonies will be planted in the empty spaces in upcoming years.

Do you sell your peonies?

We do not sell divisions of our plants. We do offer a selection of historic cultivars for sale in the spring. Watch our web site and e-newsletter for updates.

What is the Reiner Cloud on this web site?

The Reiner Cloud is a tag cloud. It is intended to help users find historic peony cultivars that include specific words and terms. The Reiner Cloud lists many of the terms used for the historic cultivars included in the database compiled by Mr. Reiner Jakubowski for the registration of...

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