I suspect my Peony has a problem. What to do?
One by one we’ll discuss the most common problems that your Peony might suffer from:
The Peony has been planted too deep into the soil. A peony planted too deep into the soil has trouble giving bloom or doesn’t flower at all. The eyes of the bare root can’t be planted deeper than 3-5 cm (2-3 inches) under the soil. Solution: replant the peony in the fall on another location(!) at the proper depth.
The Peony has Botrytis Paeonia. The bud and top of the stem are brown/black with fungus and are dried out. Or: just before the bloom the stems suffer from ‘greenstick’ as a result from a flacid week like part at the bottom of the stem. Solution: take your loss and at the end of August cut off the foliage at the ground. This cutted off-foliage is a place of fungi and diseases, so never use this as compost. Next season another chance.
The peony has crumpled leafs and grows poorly. If, in the fall, you take this peony out of the ground and clean the bare roots, you’ll see bulges on the roots. This is a result from root-knot nematodes. The solution is rigorous: excavation, disposal and allow the soil at least 1 year rest to get rid of the root-knot nematodes. This because the nematodes also hibernate in other hosts.
The peony has a viral infection. The leafs are clearly spotted. Nowadays this is hardly a problem because it has no demonstrable effect on the bloom.
The peony has ‘wet feet’. If the roots (‘feet’) stand too long or too often in wet soil, the Peony will fall behind in growth and bloom. A well-drained, sunny or semi-shaded place is a requirement.
These problems are not all there is; there are other causes of poor growing or blooming peony. However these are the most common. We hope to have given you a solution for your Peony-problem.
The buds of my Peony suffer from ants, may this couse a problem?
The ants are attracted to the sweet substance that the buds produce. You may taste this substance; it tastes like liquid sugar. However, the insects do no harm. If you want to pick up some stems in your living room, you can dip the stems a few minutes upside down in a bucket of water, then the insects and sugar washes off easily.
I came across the term ‘2/3 and 3/5 eyes’. What does this mean?
By this we mean the size of the bare root. 2/3 corresponds with two roots and/or three eyes. 3/5 thus corresponds with 3 roots and/or 5 eyes. ‘Eyes’ are the reddish (sometimes pink-white or white) buds on the bare root out of which the stems for next season will grow. Our private buyers are always delivered the heavier size 3/5.
Is it possible to visit the nursery during the blooming period?
The best time is also the busiest time because we are processing the flowers. When all the work that we want to do allows us to make time you are, after making an appointment, very welcome. Sometimes a tour can be given. We also make for gardening groups or, for example, those who wish peonies on their wedding, if possible an exception. As much goes with us: all in consult and you can always ask for it. A simple ‘yes’ you have; a ‘no’ you might get.
Is it possible to pick up my order at the nursery?
This is, of course, possible. However we are not at the nursery at any time of the day, so an appointment is neccessary. An appointment can be made via e-mail or telephone (see ‘contact’).
Do you have folders or material for advertisement available?
Unfortunately, we don’t. A business card we do have of course. Our website is our advertisement, we hope. At FloraHolland (the flowerauction) in Aalsmeer (www.floraholland.com) some material is available.
What space does a Peony need in my garden?
Depending on how long the peony will be located at that place (the fewer years, the more are able to stand at that location), we often recommend 3 to 5 pieces per square meter (3 years or less: 7 to 9 pieces). The peonies are planted ‘dice-wise’ (like the dots on dice). Different varieties can stand together. However, consider the height of the stems and the flowering period. For instance a smaller, later varietie can suffer severe from a big, early variety.
Peonies in a pot, is that a possibility?
Yes, that is possible. Important is that it has enough space (a pot of at least 5 liters is sufficient); that the soil in which it is kept stays moist (not wet) and that it is good fertilized every year because a peony consumes a lot of nutrients. Planting a peony from a pot into the soil is also possible. Keep in mind to do this in the fall (see ‘what time is the best moment for (re)planting my Peony?)
How old can a Peony get?
Peonies can easily reach their 20 year-anniversary. However, after 12-15 years the number of flowers that the plant offers (often more than 50) slowly decreases. It is assumed that it is a result of the Peony’s own defensemechanism: It separates off a substance which makes it difficult for other plants to also grow on that spot. This has, after a period of time, consequences for themselves because the Peony grows into that soil-filled substance. It is however, not fatal for the plant.
How many varieties of Peonies are there?
There are over 1,000 varieties of peonies. Peonies are divided into several groups. We mainly cultivate herbaceous Peonies and a few Paeonia Tenuiflora’s. Of these herbaceous Peonies are more than 500 different varieties and each year new varieties are eveloped. This herbaceous plants lose their leaves in the fall; this in contrast to the tree peonies, which have their woody stem standing in winter. The Tree Peonies we do not grow.
What time is the best moment to sow Peony seeds?
In nature some varieties of Peony drops her seeds at the end of summer (end of August). That moment is the best time to sow. Sow the seeds shallow, no more than a few centimeters, in moist soil. Patience is a virtue in this, because it takes at least seven years before a seed has grown into a flourishing peony.
What time is the best moment to divide my Peony?
When the leafs are completely at the end of their circle of life (have become completely brown), the bare roots are harvested (September/October). After harvesting the roots are first cleaned (soil removed) to have a better view of the roots, after which they are divided. The art of dividing is to obtain a number of eyes on a few roots. These eyes will evelope in spring to the new stems. For dividing we ourselves use a knife; the goal is to divide the peony into several small peonies. This is specialized work. Here the motto is: do not be afraid, and especially take a good look to ensure yourself how the peony is put together!
What time is the best moment to (re)plant my Peony?
The best time for planting is in the fall, roughly from early October to mid-November (when it is not freezing yet). A peony has to get used to his new soilsurroundings and because the plant is not yet in hibernation, they can already get acquinted (form hair roots) to their new environment. Then it is more likely that they bloom in the following spring. Some growers however plant in early spring (February/March). This is also possible. However, the chance is bigger that the peony doesn’t bloom this first season. The Peony will flower the following season. Note that a Peony cannot be replanted on his old spot! She will fall behind strongly in her growth, and never grow up quite nicely. This is because she seperates off a substance which makes it difficult for other plants to also grow on that spot. This also has consequences for herself. She eventually grows, after many years, in her own defensemechanism and she does not like that. Recent research has shown that even after 10 years a delay in growth is noticeable. Therefore we advise to never use the same planting spot.
When can I expect my order of Peonies?
After harvesting, dividing and delivering to our professional customers, orders from our private orderers are processed and shipped. Because we are depending on the weather conditions for the harvest, an exact time can not be predicted. Usually this always happens in October; but at the latest before mid-November.
What time is the best moment to order Peonies?
You can order all year round. All orders are collected all year round. The earlier you order, the more certain you can be that the variety of your desire is still available. Around 15 September of each year, we are going to harvest the peonies. Orders received right after that date may be delivered in the next autumn. Of course we’ll get in contact with you about that.