You can leave peonies left in your garden for years on end without too much worry. However, there may come a time when transplanting peonies is the only option.
Reasons for this being, your peonies are now shaded by a large tree or shrub, and you need to move them to a sunnier site to improve the blooms.
Besides this, you could be doing some DIY landscaping, and your peonies sit where your perennial garden or raised beds are going to go.
The one great thing with peonies is that because peonies are such a large vigorous plant, you can dig them up and replant them without too much worry of losing them; it can take a while, yet your new buds will soon grow well in your garden for up to 50 years.
Here you can learn about when do you transplant peonies and how you go about it to make sure the plant survives after moving it to another location.
Can You Transplant Peonies in the Spring?
Moving peonies isn’t too much of a challenge, and the most challenging part is knowing when to transplant peonies. The old-fashioned flowers come with individual transplanting timelines, which make sure you can obtain the best results.
Replanting peonies can be easy once you prepare a spot with all the plant needs and give them at least six to eight hours of full sun per day.
Unlike fast-growing perennials, you will find herbaceous peonies (Paeonia lactiflora) don’t require frequent transplanting.
This perennial is such a slow grower that if your root ball clumps are correctly spaced in the ground, you shouldn’t regularly replant peonies. With perfect growing conditions, transplanting peonies could be around every 10 or 15 years.
Timing needs to be right for the transplant of your peonies. If you want to avoid growth interruption, transplanting peonies in fall is best.
You can move peonies before your plants sprout and are still in the dormant phase in the spring. Transplanting in the spring may interrupt root growth; and flowering on some varieties and not others. (Read Best Folding Potting Bench)
Well, into the fall is the best time as it won’t affect the buds, and you can still water the ground in your garden without the worry of frost.
When Can You Move a Peony Plant?
When you ask, when can you transplant peonies? You see a couple of different times, and it can affect plant growth.
Peonies may fail to bloom if they don’t get the ideal amount of direct full sun when trees and shrubs mature. Or you wish to increase your peony numbers and create divisions to add to your yard.
Lastly, peonies may be planted too close together, and when the clumps begin to mature, they start crowding and need to be lifted and replanted.
The best time of year for transplanting peonies is September through the fall.
How Do You Dig Up Peonies?
- Clip leafy stems back to almost ground level and 2 to 3 inches tall.
- Using a sharp spade, dig beneath the peony clump about 18 inches away from the plant’s crown and stems.
- While digging underneath and around the root ball, try to cut as few of the roots as possible.
- Once the soil is loose, lift the peony from your hole and place it onto a tarpaulin.
- Shake the plant gently to remove the loose soil from the roots.
- Divide the peony roots into sections or divisions.
- In each division, you need to have three to five eyes or growing points. (the eyes are spots on the roots, which produce stems and leaves).
- Use a sharp knife and cut back soft or bad spots on your peony roots.
- Let your root pieces air dry and form a callus (hard skin layer) before planting. You can also dust the roots with a fungicide to help prevent rot.
- Select your full sun (six to eight hours per day) area apart from any Southern or Southwestern region; here, afternoon shade is perfect.
- Dig your new planting hole large enough to accommodate your peony divisions, and the root ball can fit inside easily.
- Make sure to plant the eyes 2 inches beneath the surface of the soil in cold regions, and if in warm areas, 1-inch. Any less, and it affects the buds.
Once you have finished your transplanting, make sure to water the soil well and that the soil is firm enough to support your new peony plants.
In colder zones, add a good layer of mulch around your transplanted peony plants around 4 to 6 inches deep to avoid frost.
Remove the mulch during the early spring before any new growth on the plant.
After transplanting peonies, you may not see flowers until the following spring. It will be the third and fourth years when flower numbers increase, and they are in full bloom. It can take several years, or at least three before they are back to full glory.
What is the Best Time to Plant Peonies?
While you only have two times to transplant your peonies, it is a good job you don’t need to do it with not many years in between.
As long as the soil is ideal in your garden, you can easily dig around the plant and divide it before you transplant them to move your plants to another site.
After that, you need to wait a while before your glorious plants begin showing off all their colors.
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