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Transplanting Peonies

Looking to expand your peony collection, share a division with a friend or move an ill-placed plant? Fall is the best time to transplant peonies.

Wait for the leaves to yellow or be killed by frost before digging in. Use a shovel or spading fork to carefully dig up the root system. You can divide the clump into smaller pieces with at least three to five eyes per section.

Prepare the planting site by adding several inches of organic matter such as compost to the top 12 inches of soil. Dig a hole large enough to accommodate the roots. Place the rhizome, that’s the swollen underground stem, so it is no more than 1 to 2 inches below the soil surface.

Water the soil thoroughly to remove air pockets and ensure good root-to-soil contact.

Don't be alarmed if your peony fails to bloom the following spring. It will bloom the next year as long as it was properly planted.

A bit more information:  Peonies often fail to bloom the spring after transplanting. If the problem continues evaluate the growing conditions and your maintenance program. Rhizomes planted too deep, over fertilized, or placed in an area with heavy shade may fail to bloom. Correct the problem to ensure future flowering.

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