Start a new thread

1 to 18 of 18 replies

when would be best time to move a peony? i have 9 now in front garden and just 1 in the back, the space i have in the back is east facing , this time of year gets early moning cun for around 3 hours, would it be ok here?

sorry of there was already a thread on this couldn't find it

Rosemummy Do not move Paeonia yet September is the proper time though I have moved them when it has been urgent. East facing early sun is not good for them as early morning frost would be melted off too quickly and damage the flowers, mine are in full bloom, well some of them and we do get early frosts up here.

Prepare the ground before a move with plenty of compost and a dressing of bone meal. Cut round the root taking as large a root ball as you can handle and replant, they will take semi shade though a west or south west facing position is best. Make sure you place the surface of the root ball at exactly the same height as it was previously, in other words do not put a covering of compost on it, heel in and water in and then sit back, they sulk not liking being moved, one of mine did not flower for three years, I was about to dig it out and this year it is a mass of blooms.

I have them over thirty years old and one is a cutting from a huge bushy plant there in my childhood and my Dad's we reckon over one hundred years old, growing up with them they are my favourite flower though short lived and prone to being blown about they make me smile.


Thanks for replying Frank, I had a feeling East would't be ok but I'm a bit stuck for anywhere else...

Hello, jumping on your thread rosemummy, hope you don't mind. Should you treat tree peaonies the same as herbaceous peaonies? I rescued a tree peaony last year, it was in flower but this year hasn't flowered, could I have planted it too deep and if I have will it ever flower?


Lisa, Tree Paeonia are the same genus as floral or bush Paeonia and need the same treatment.

Always keep the root ball at the same level, do not cover with soil or mulch, scatter it and fertiliser around the root ball about a foot away. They do not like to be moved and will sulk for a couple of years then suddenly flower as one of mine did, it nearly got thrown out, mind I do talk to them, "Flower this year you @------ or you are on the compost" it worked. They can be damaged by late frost they will not then flower. They love full sun though will take partial shade and they are hungry beasts so a nice rich mulch around but away from the main root stock is needed.

They are wonderful flowers I love them and have them covering a period of time with different types though with the bush type stake them as a shower of rain soaking the large flower then a gust of wind will flatten them, who said gardening was easy?


Thanks Frank, I think I may have planted too deep, it was in a sorry state when I got it and wanted to make sure it was sturdy in the ground not realising the importance of planting depth. It didn't have a big root to it either which was part of the reason for planting deep. I may raise it up in autumn if I'm feeling brave.

Hi frank, since you are very knowledgable on this subject could I ask a couple more things? Firstly, my inherited peonies ( much nicer spelling ) are healthy I think they're the typical double deep red ones, but each only produces 3 flowers, can I improve this? Secondly, I bought a Sarah bernhardt recently, it looks like 2 dead twigs at top and I,ve just very lightly covered with GP compost, it,s in a pot, have I done right thing for it to flower next year? And thirdly, I bought the a page only in a box last year, planted in a pot, moved to northwet border, it came up ok, not huge, it had a bud but I think a strong wind- or a thuggish geranium- has damaged the stem, the bud isn't,t looking like it will open, any advice? I hope you don' t mind so many questions, as you can tell I' m a novice and do appreciate all advice, thank you in advance

can I jump on this too, I think I will need to raise mine again in autumn, they are pitiful, with only a few small leaves.  lets hope they are worth the wait one day. 

Rosemummy Paeonia is the given name although it should be "wait for it" Paeoniaceae and was once called Ranunculaceae. now most people say Peony.

The red ones will be Rubra-plena once called Officinalis but they have been superseded by crosses. How old are the plants they take years to grow and I have a Rubra put in four years ago that has produced just three large beautiful flowers this year, that was after I threatened it. The original Rubra 20 years old has masses of flowers ready to open. I also have Rosa -Plena a delicate pink with white edges which will come into flower after the Rubra.

I do not know the Sarah Bernhardt but what you describe will take three years minimum to flower and probably longer, these are long lived plants and need time to settle and build up root before they will start flowering, well that is my experience over very many years. A late snap frost could have damaged the flowering bud you can only wait and see. This forum is to answer questions from people with problems, if we were not happy answering we would not be here so ask away.

Peanuts3 Stake your plant and scrape away the soil on the top of the root ball though I would raise it now. Take as big a root ball as you can and gently lift then prod plenty of rich compost under and tamp it down, more rich compost around it and tread it in then water freely, keep it staked. Three or four canes around the plant with interwoven string will keep it safe. Make sure the original top of the root ball is clear and when feeding or mulching add it in a ring about a foot from the plant. I leave the foliage on the plant over winter as a frost guard and clear it away in Spring.


thankyou Frank, your rosa plena sounds beautiful, I don't know how old the rubra plena are, they're quite large bushes, the lady who lived here before us was here avery long time and obviously a garden lover, however I know she was ill for a while before the house was empty 18 months, then we moved in 16 months ago, a lot of flowers I like seem to be in the ranunculaceae (?) group, i planted some pink and white ranunculus bulbs which have sprouted , can't wait to see flowers

Rosemummy, Read your mail again and realised the established plants you have are older ones that need a bit of TLC. it will be next year now before they pick up although the foliage should be clean and shiny. If this is not so cut out any stalks of leaves that show disease browning shrivelling, once it has flowered remove the dead flower heads now to work. Make a mulch of compost, home made if you have it, add some bone meal and granular fertiliser, well rotted manure if possible for those that have it, most will not. Now put a thick mulch around the root ball but not touching it, never cover the top is my experience they do not like it, water in. Repeat that again late summer.

Spring cut down all the old foliage and lightly brush any debris away from the root, another mulch and it will be away growing its head off. Always stake and string the plant will grow through and cover it. They love South and West facing mine have that although the Rosa Plena is in a spot where it only gets the afternoon and evening sun, it thrives.

They can suffer Paeonia wilt, Brown spot and buds failing to open, the latter is usually to dry and not enough feed as with any plant water feed cleanliness are essential.


Thank you Frank, I will do as you suggest, Would love some big peonies to thrive in my garden. 

Thank you frank, leaves all v healthy on older plants, the one I planted last year either has wilt, I didn't, feed it at all, or the stem did get damaged, hopefully after a bit more care it will recover next year, regarding the one I just planted, should I have left the twiggy looking stem uncovered? I lightly covered it,it was a b and q bargain,hoping with all this info I can help it thrive

sorry to jump on your forum. Thank you for very much needed information. However, please can anyone tell me. Who eats the buds of my peonies. Last year they were eaten and this year I had 4buds and they all gone.

i was so looking forward to seeing it flowered. May be next year.


many thank


This is a question for palais glide really as he' s very knowledgable on paeonia, but any advice gladly received, a peony I planted last year came up with nice foliage but it was only 10 ins tall so I didn't t stake it, the stem snapped halfway , will it recover and how can I help it? The other thing is only my 2 'subra plena' have flowered, unsure what all others are-there are 6 more plants, all taller with different leaves, the've all been in bud for weeks!will the flowers ever open? Wondering if it' s all this rain and lack of sun

sara haywood

I moved a peony the year before last whilst in full bloom (from my Aunt's garden to mine after she passed away) , and it had a major sulk last year and didn't flower, this year it has been a little more forgiving and given me 2 flowers. I have one in the front garden I would love to move but have been nervous about doing so, thanks for this thread I feel a little more confident now and will wait till September. 

Sign up or log in to post a reply