Tree peony: planting, care and pruning


The tree peony is one of the beauty queens of the garden with its haughty habit and abundant flowering. But to enjoy for many years the magnificence of this shrub exceptionally, it is necessary to plant it in the right place, to prune it in the rules of the art but only in certain cases, and to give it the little regular care it deserves. So pampered, the peony in tree can have a longevity of around 50 years! And contrary to popular belief, it is far from capricious. Here is everything you need to know to cultivate this plant that we love as much for its sophistication as for its resistance to cold and disease.

Planting the tree peony

It is one of the most wonderful flowering plants that you can install in your garden, large or small, in town or in the countryside. We reserve a place for him sheltered from cold winds, situated at half shade because direct sunlight in the middle of summer could burn it. However, she still needs a little sun, and she appreciates it when her radiation remains moderate.

The tree peony hates compact, heavy soils. On the contrary, she likes light, rich, cool, well-drained and deep soils. It is also satisfied with poor soil, but in this type of soil it is less floriferous. It is very important to choose your location taking into account all these criteria because the beautiful don’t like to be moved. You might as well make sure to reserve a corner for it permanently.

About the planting period peony in tree, it is between the last week of September and the end of April, on condition of avoiding periods of abundant rain and of course of frost.

She cannot be planted only in the ground. Its culture in tank is strongly discouraged because it would not allow the tree peony to have enough soil. Here is the method to follow.

  • Dig a generously dimensioned hole, 40 cm deep and 50 to 60 cm wide.
  • Take care to make two piles with the soil removed from the planting hole, in order to separate the bottom and the surface.
  • Loosen the earth so that it is light. It is necessary to crumble it, to remove stones, weeds, roots and other plant debris.
  • Place the tree peony foot in the center of the hole.
  • Ensure that the collar or grafting point is 10 cm below from ground level.
  • Fill the hole again with the crumbled earth, each pile having to be put back in its place (bottom and surface).
  • Finally add some fertilized soil.
  • Firm the soil without injuring the roots of the shrub.
  • Carry out a copious watering.

If you want to plant several feet of tree peonies, you must leave a distance of 100 to 120 cm between two.

Caring for the tree peony

After its installation, the peony in tree should benefit, in dry weather, from regular watering until it is perfectly rooted. Subsequently, apart from periods of drought, it can be satisfied with the rains. When these are sorely lacking, it is of course necessary to take out the garden hose and make sure to wet the soil on a fairly wide perimeter all around the foot so that the whole root system can benefit from this irrigation.

It is in autumn that it is advisable to bring him all the nutrients that she needs. We can do a add ripe compost or from decomposed manure placed in mulch at the foot of the tree peony in October or November. As for its protection against frost, it is only useful in areas with extremely severe winters because this shrub is able to withstand temperatures of -16 to – 24 ° C without blinking.

Pruning a tree peony is not a good idea

In order to maintain the beauty of this plant, it is necessary remove withered flowers as we go along, while waiting for each to have lost all of its petals. On the other hand, it is strongly not recommended to prune a tree peony (with some exceptions) because that would have no other effect than to corrupt its growth. It is therefore not touched if it branches off naturally.

We can therefore remember that it is necessary to shorten the stems of the previous year by only about 30% of their length. if the base is thinning. We only intervene during the period of vegetative rest and outside of frost days. Pruning is also useful if the antler is unbalanced or does not fill up enough. We then opt for a moderate size, even if it is done in stages, over two or three years, in order to preserve flowering but also because the reconstitution of this shrub is very slow. In this case, it is necessary to cut back either above a shoot or above a leaf, but always a few centimeters below a flower.

The pruning of the tree peony therefore consists only of:

  • Cut dead wood because it can become the nest of parasites or promote the development of pathogenic fungi,
  • Remove a few stems on which the flowers are withered to prevent the shrub from producing seeds.

At most we can remove two or three branches if the foot really has a totally unelegant silhouette. Be that as it may, the cut must always be clean and straightforward, and to prevent rain or irrigation water from stagnating and leading to rotting, care must be taken to bevel cut, this favoring the flow of water. the water.

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