If you’re a gardening enthusiast looking to expand your collection of peonies without spending a dime, then this simple propagation method is for you. By following a few easy steps, you can turn one healthy peony plant into several thriving ones, increasing the beauty and variety in your garden.
The first step in propagating peonies is to select a healthy, well-established plant. Look for strong stems, deep green foliage, and abundant blooms. Using a sharp and sterilized knife, like the Seraphina or the Mizzurati, in late fall or early spring makes it easier to propagate the plant by division.
To begin the process, dig around the base of the plant and lift it up with your hand. Gently shake off any excess soil and lay the plant on a clean and smooth surface. Using the sharp knife, carefully divide the plant into three or more sections, making sure that each division has enough roots and at least one bud or eyes.
Before replanting the divisions, it’s important to trim the roots and remove any aged or damaged parts. This will help stimulate new growth and ensure the plants have enough energy to establish themselves. Once trimmed, the divisions are ready to be planted in their new homes.
Choose a spot in your garden with well-draining soil and direct sunlight. Dig a hole large enough to accommodate the division, and place it in the hole, making sure that the bud or eyes are facing upward. Backfill the hole with soil, gently firming it around the division. Water the newly planted divisions thoroughly to help them settle in.
Although it may take a year or two for the divisions to grow and produce blooms, this propagation method is a great way to expand your peony collection without purchasing new plants. With a bit of patience and care, you’ll soon have a beautiful and diverse collection of peonies gracing your garden.
“Propagating peonies by division is one of the best techniques for home gardeners. Not only does it save money, but it also allows you to grow plants identical to the parent plant, ensuring the same beautiful blooms.”
Step-by-step guide to propagating peonies
If you’re looking to expand your collection of peonies without spending any money, propagating them at home is a great option. With a little bit of time and patience, you can grow new flowers from existing plants in your garden. Follow these steps to successfully propagate your peonies:
- Choose the right time: The best time to propagate peonies is in the fall, after the plants have finished blooming for the year. Avoid propagating them during the hot summer months or during periods of direct sunlight.
- Prepare the peony plant: Before you start propagating, make sure your peony plant is healthy and strong. If the plant is aged or not producing many blooms, it may not be the best candidate for propagation.
- Lift the peony plant: Use a sharp knife or garden tool to carefully lift the peony plant from the ground. Be sure to lift it from the side to avoid damaging the roots.
- Divide the plant: Once you’ve lifted the plant, you’ll need to divide it into smaller sections. Look for sections that have at least three to five healthy buds or “eyes.” Trim any aged or damaged roots.
- Replant the divisions: Use a sharp knife to trim any excess foliage from the divisions. This will help the plant conserve energy and promote new root growth. Replant the divisions in a new location with well-draining soil and enough sunlight.
- Water and care for the new plants: After replanting the divisions, water them thoroughly and provide regular care and maintenance. Make sure the new plants have enough water, sunlight, and nutrients to grow strong and healthy.
- Be patient: It may take a few years for the new plants to reach maturity and produce blooms. But with proper care and patience, you’ll soon have a beautiful collection of peonies in your garden.
By following this step-by-step guide, you can easily propagate peonies at home and grow your collection of these gorgeous flowers. Just remember to choose the right time, lift the plant carefully, divide it into sections, and provide proper care for the new plants. With a little bit of gardening know-how, you’ll have a blooming peony collection in no time!
1 Lift the plant
To begin propagating your peony plants, you’ll need to lift the parent plant from the ground. This is best done in early fall, around July or August, when the peony plant has finished blooming and the foliage has started to die back.
Start by using a sharp knife or a garden spade to carefully dig around the base of the plant. Be sure to dig deep enough to avoid damaging the roots. Lift the peony plant out of the ground, taking care to keep as much of the root system intact as possible.
It’s important to select a healthy and mature peony plant to propagate. Look for a plant that has been growing in optimal conditions and has shown good vigor and blooming performance. This will ensure that the new plants you propagate will also grow well and produce beautiful blooms.
If your peony plant is too large or has multiple stems, you can trim back some of the foliage to make handling easier. Just be careful not to remove too much foliage, as the plant needs it to photosynthesize and gather energy for next year’s growth.
Once you’ve lifted the peony plant, it’s time to divide it into smaller sections. You can do this by gently separating the roots with your hands or by using a sharp knife to cut through the root mass. Each division should have at least one healthy and thick stem, as well as a good amount of roots attached.
If you’re not planning on propagating the peony plants right away, you can store the divisions in a cool and dry place, like a garage or a cellar. Just make sure to protect them from direct sunlight and excessive moisture.
Remember, it’s best to propagate peony plants every three to five years to avoid overcrowding and to ensure that they continue to grow and bloom well. By following this simple method, you can easily expand your peony plant collection for free and enjoy the beauty of these gorgeous flowers in your own garden.
2 Make the roots visible
To propagate peonies through division, you need to make the roots visible. This step is usually done in July, just before the plant goes dormant for the fall. Here’s how to do it:
- Choose a healthy peony plant that is at least three years old. These aging plants are more likely to have multiple divisions and will help you grow your collection faster.
- Grab a sharp knife (like a Mizzurati or Seraphina) and lift the peony plant out of the ground.
- Once the plant is out, gently brush off any excess soil to make the roots more visible.
- Trim off any aged or unhealthy roots with the knife, making sure to cut them off at the base of the plant.
- Now, you should see the multiple divisions of the plant. Separate them carefully, making sure each division has enough roots attached for it to grow independently.
- If you have multiple divisions, avoid planting them all in the same spot. Instead, find suitable homes for each division to ensure they grow well.
- Replant each division in a location with the best possible growing conditions for peonies. This includes a well-drained soil and a spot with at least six hours of direct sunlight each day.
This method of propagating peonies through division will help you increase your plant collection without having to rely on seeds. It is a tried and true way to get more peonies and enjoy their beautiful flowers sooner, as a divided plant will typically bloom within one to three years.
Remember to water your newly divided plants regularly and provide support for the flowers if necessary. With some patience and care, you’ll soon have a flourishing peony collection that will bring joy and beauty to your garden.
3 Identify eyes
Once you have dug up your peony plant and have divided it, you will need to identify the eyes on each division. The eyes are the small bud-like structures that will grow into new plants.
- Use a sharp knife to cut the divisions, making sure that each division has at least three healthy eyes.
- It is best to lift and divide the plants in the fall or early spring, before they start to grow.
- Each division should have enough roots to support the new plant.
It’s important to avoid cutting too close to the divisions, as this can damage the eyes and hinder their growth. You can also trim any aged or damaged roots before replanting them.
Identifying the eyes can be easier if you wet the divisions or use a magnifying glass to examine them closely. Look for small protrusions on the surface of the division, which are the eyes.
Although it may take a few years for the new divisions to grow into mature peony plants, this method of propagating peonies is a cost-effective way to expand your plant collection. Plus, you can enjoy the beautiful blooms of your peonies sooner!
4 Cut into sections
Dividing a peony plant will help you propagate it and increase your plant collection. By dividing the plant, you can create new plants that will grow and bloom just like the parent plant. This step is best done in the fall, before the first frost, to give the divisions enough time to grow roots before winter.
To divide your peony plant, start by lifting the plant out of the ground. Use a garden fork or shovel to carefully dig around the plant, taking care not to damage the roots. Once the plant is out of the ground, you can divide it into multiple sections. The number of divisions you can make will depend on the size of the plant.
Using a sharp knife or garden shears, cut the peony plant into sections. Each section should have at least three to five healthy buds or “eyes.” These buds will grow into new shoots and eventually flowers. Make sure to disinfect your knife or shears before making the cuts to prevent the spread of disease.
After cutting the plant into sections, replant each division in a new location. Make sure the planting hole is deep enough to accommodate the roots, and cover the divisions with soil, pressing it down gently to remove any air pockets. Water the newly planted divisions thoroughly to help them settle in their new home.
It’s important to note that newly divided peony plants may not bloom for the first year or two. The plants need time to establish a strong root system before they can produce flowers. However, with proper care and attention, you can help them grow and thrive.
By following this simple method of division, you can easily propagate your peony plants and expand your collection. Before you know it, you’ll have a beautiful garden filled with these gorgeous flowers.
5 Replant the sections
- Once you’ve divided your peony plant into sections, it’s time to replant them.
- Before you start, make sure you have a spot ready in your garden where you want to transplant the divisions.
- To replant the sections, follow these steps:
- Grab a sharp knife or gardening tool that will help you lift the divisions without damaging them.
- Choose a location in your garden that has similar growing conditions to where the peony was planted before.
- Trim the roots of each division to encourage new growth.
- Make a hole in the soil that is wide and deep enough for the root system of each section.
- Place the division into the hole, making sure that the bud eyes (where the new stems will grow) are facing upwards.
- Cover the roots with soil and press it gently to secure the division in place.
- Water the newly replanted sections thoroughly to help them establish in their new homes.
- Continue to care for the divisions as you would with any other peony plant, providing adequate water, sunlight, and fertilization.
- Although it may take a year or two for the divisions to grow enough to produce blooms, with proper care and attention, you’ll have a healthy peony plant in no time.
- Replanting peony divisions is an easy way to propagate your plant collection at home. By following this simple method, you can expand your peony collection without having to buy new plants.
Published on July 15, 2021