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The peony is a flowering plant in the genus Paeonia, the only genus in the family Paeoniaceae. They are native to Asia, Southern Europe and Western North America.
Peonies can be classified by both plant growth habit and flower type. There are three types of peonies. Herbaceous (non-woody), Tree (shrub), and Itoh. Itoh hybrids are a combination of which herbaceous and tree forms. In the winter herbaceous peonies die back to their underground parts whereas Tree Peonies loose there leaves but keep a woody stem above ground.
Tree Peonies are unique as they are take some patience to bloom. It can take up to 2 years for Tree Peonies to bloom, but once they start blooming each year it gets better and better! Providing a show that is incomparable to any other blooming tree.
|Common Name||Tree Peony|
|Botanical Name||Paeonia suffruticosa|
|Zones||5, 6, 7, 8|
|Light Requirements||Full Sun, Half Sun / Half Shade|
|Mature Height||36-60" tall|
|Estimated Mature Spread||48-60" wide|
|Bloom Time||Early to late spring|
|Planting Depth||Plant the roots 1" to 2" below soil level with the eyes (buds) pointing up.|
|Ships As||Bare Root|
|Planting Time||Spring / Summer|
|Soil Type||Loamy Soil|
|Soil Moisture||Average, Well Draining|
|Advantages||Deer Resistant, Bee Friendly, Fragrant|
|Ships to Hawaii, Alaska & Canada||No|
Adding peonies to your garden is easy. Plant in full sun in most regions. In colder regions, planting peonies in shade will result in weak stems and less flowers. In warmer regions or where spring is hot and dry, choose a site with afternoon shade. Plant in average or well-draining loamy soil. Peonies prefer soil that provide moisture, but isn’t water logged. Add compost if needed before planting.
Planting tree peonies is different than herbaceous and intersectional itoh peonies.
The first year of growing peonies, expect the roots to products 2-5 leave shoots and 1-2 flowers. Year two brings a plant double the size and double the blossoms. By the fourth or fifth year peonies will be full and bushy, with lots of foliage and blossoms.
Itoh and tree peonies don't require staking, but most herbaceous peony once established, produce heavy flowers that often are too heavy for its stems. You don't have to stake them, but if you don't, you're going to have big beautiful flowers nodding down. So once you have a healthy clump, use peony rings to keep them upright. The rings are simply wheel-like wire arrangements that stand up over the peony like a little wire table as the plant sprouts in the spring. With upright supports, the peony ring is placed so the shoots will grow up through the round wire bale. Of course, the foliage quickly hides the ring, and you have a beautifully-supported clump well before the flowers open. Where to find Peony Rings? We recommend Gardeners Supply.
For herbaceous and (itoh) intersectional peonies after blooms have passed, clip expired blooms down to the where the foliage meets the stem. Leave the foliage for the remainder of the growing season. As fall arrive and temperatures cool, the leaves will turn yellow and then wilt. For herbaceous peonies trim back all foliage to about 3" from the ground. This keeps the plant tidy and allows new growth to come up without damaging it. In the fall itoh peonies need to be treated similar to herbaceous and tree peonies since they are a hybrid of both. Once the plant has matured its best to trim back so that the herbaceous portion of the stem is removed and the hard wood portion remains. Its best to leave the peonies alone in there first year of growing so that you tell the difference between the herbaceous green stem from the hard wood portion as the leaves die back. Usually mature itoh peonies will leave 4-5 inches of hard wood above ground.
Tree peonies require different trimming techniques. Cut the stem just below the expired blooms. If you trim the stem to far, it will hinder next year's growth. This years green shoots will become next years woody branch. So in the fall, do not trim back or cut to the ground, leave the shrub as is. If you have a mature tree peony and it needs shaping, the best time to prune, is right after it blooms. Make sure to not take to much off the tree as it can really hurt the shrub.
Peonies don’t need to be fertilized every year. Its best to plant them with plenty of nutrients. Apply bonemeal, compost or well-rotted manure in early summer, after peonies have bloomed every couple of years.
Shipping begins in late March based on ground temperatures, warmest zones first.
As soon as your order is placed you will receive an order confirmation email that will include your shipping information. We ship perennials and spring-planted bulbs at the proper planting time for your hardiness zone. Perennials and spring-planted bulb orders will arrive separately from seeds. If your order requires more than one shipment, there is no additional shipping charge. See our shipping information page for approximate ship dates and more detailed information. If you need express shipping or have any questions, please call Customer Service toll-free at (877) 309-7333 or contact us by email.
You will receive a second email the day your order ships telling you how it has been sent. Your order is scheduled to arrive at your door, fresh and ready to plant, usually within 3-5 days of leaving our warehouse, depending on your shipping address. We pack our plants to withstand up to 10 days in transit, in the event transit is delayed. We cannot guarantee arrival on a specific day. Please make sure to open your package upon receipt and follow the instructions included.
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Comments about American Meadows Tree Peony Red:
Ordered two of these, one red and one pink, to integrate into new bed with others. They both did not survive. Very disappointed.
To determine if a plant is sufficiently cold hardy, the USDA created numbered zones indicating winter low temperatures; the lower the zone number the colder the winter.
Enter your Zip Code to find your USDA Planting Zone
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