Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Growing of Peonies

The Peonies are Bloomin'!
At last the peonies in my garden are in full bloom. I planted mine a few years ago. The plant has never failed to flower. The loveliness of its rose-like scented blossoms brings a sense of dreamy pleasure. The beauty of the flower's delicate layered petals is a sight I love to see. Yet, despite the graceful look of peonies, they are very hardy, drought tolerant and require little maintenance. What a gardener's dream!

They can take anywhere from one to three years to first bloom. But once they do flower, you'll be able to enjoy them, often for more than 50 years.

Peony - Not Just Another Pretty Flower
Some say the name is in memory of Greek physician Paeon, physician to the gods. Peonies were evidently first used for medicinal purposes in the far East and Europe. Traditional Chinese texts describe several medicinal preparations using the roots, seeds and flowers. Herbalists use peonies to treat nervous disorders, chorea, epilepsy, Rheumatism and dropsy. Modern medical researchers are finding that there may be truth to the peony's medical wonders and soon may be using this beauty to treat various diseases.

For my part, and I'm sure many of you, the sheer pleasure of gazing at this romantic looking flower and the scent of its dazzling fragrance is medicine enough.

Peony Growing Facts
  • Best planted in the early fall.
  • If separating plants be very careful with the roots
  • Peonies enjoy sunny locations, with well drained soil and lots of room
  • They prefer cooler climates
  • Plant herbaceous and intersectional peony roots so that the highest crown bud is not more than 5 cm (2") deep. Planting too deep may prevent the plant from blooming
  • Tree peonies, on the other hand, require deep planting
If you are planning to separate your peony plants, you may want to keep in mind, that according to "American Regional Folklore" by Terry Ann Mood, you should always dig a peony up at night as, "Anyone observed by woodpeckers while digging up peonies, it was believed, would become blind." I leave it to you to decide if this is true.

For more about planting peonies, view this video:

Online sources:


  1. Good info. Now if you could wave away my problem with botrytis and give me a few more square feet (one problem compounds t'other), I might actually be able to grow peonies.

  2. Being a hobby gardener, had to look up "botrytis" - seems it's a fungus caused by wet weather. Am learning so much from this blogging. Guess you'll need to appeal to Mother Nature to wave it away and give some nice dry heat!

  3. I love peonies. I just added a second one this year, I wish I had room for lots more.

  4. They are a gorgeous flower. Too bad they don't last very long.

  5. What a gorgeous photograph ! Great blog by the way.Clare

  6. What a beautiful pic and very informative!!! Love your blog - really pretty!

    And thank you so much for putting me on your blog roll!!! I'm honoured!!!!

    Hope you manage to keep the cat out of the garden! Only now that I have taken an interest in my garden has the cat disney started using it as a loo! How rude!!!!

    Linzi x x x


Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts.


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