The lush shrubs of tree peonies are stunning and fragrant. Moreover, they are not demanding in care, are not susceptible to frequent illnesses, and are distinguished by long-life years. Therefore, many gardeners dream of getting this beautiful flower on their site. Enjoy reading this article and learn all about Peony.
Description and Types
The tree peony is one of the types of vegetation in the Peony family. Many botanists agree that he means a whole group of shrubs. Be that as it may, the general characteristics of this beautiful representative of the flora are not controversial.
So, tree peonies are a bush that reaches 150-200 cm with light-brown stems and large flowers in red, white, yellow, or pink. The petals are large in size and have a corrugated structure, and large stamens are clearly distinguished against their background. Inflorescences can be double or semi-double in texture. Flowering lasts for two weeks, but if the weather is not too hot, the period can be longer. After the end of flowering, the shrub remains beautiful and retains its decorative properties due to the beautiful shape of the leaves.
The tree peony does not require complex care and is quite resistant to various diseases.
Today, there are officially more than five hundred varieties of these peonies. Most of them were bred in China. A huge number of species, as a rule, are divided into several main groups:
- Hybrids were obtained by crossing Delaware and yellow peonies.
- The Sino-European group has large inflorescences with a terry texture.
- The Japanese type can have both non-double and semi-double small, light flowers.
- Ito-hybrid – a variety that originated from a herbaceous and tree-like peony, from the first parent received similar foliage, and from the second – a stem that droops towards winter.
Planting a tree Peony
Planting peonies are best in the fall. It starts from the second half of August and lasts until the last days of September. Before you start planting directly, you need to choose a location where beautiful flowers will grow. Tree peonies are very fond of the sun, and therefore do not tolerate neighborhoods with tall and large buildings and plants, limiting the flowers’ access to the rays.
The best soil option is loam. If the soil is sandy on your site, then enrich it with sod soil, peat, clay, and natural fertilizer. Finally, add hummus and sand to the clay soil. Do not neglect these conditions because they can provide your peonies with a long existence. So, the plant can delight the owners every year for 100 years!
If the groundwater is located too deep, it is necessary to dig a conical depression with a diameter of 60-80 cm and place sand or pebbles on the bottom with 25-35 cm. soil and plant a tree peony in it. Water the soil abundantly for good fixation and germination of the rhizome. When the liquid is completely absorbed, fill in the indentation while leaving the neck above the surface. When planting several plant units, drop them in at a distance of 1, or preferably 2 m.
Topdressing and Watering
In the first two years of its existence, the tree peony does not need constant and special care. Next, you can enter the top dressing in the form of a 300 g of bone meal. Then, at the beginning of spring, when the plant begins to sprout the first shoots and during the swelling of the buds, add 100-150 g of nitrophoska.
If possible, water the plant with ash diluted in water. It is best to do this once or twice a week. After the peony has completed its flowering period, add superphosphate to the ground. Around October, when the leaves have fallen off, cover the soil around the shrub with peat.
Add each type of fertilizer after watering. Otherwise, the roots may be burned. Also, be very careful with nitrogen supplements. If you overdo it, gray rot, which is very dangerous for the shrub, can form, so in most cases, it is worth refraining from them altogether.
Water the tree peony generously, but not often. Once every couple of weeks is enough. Volume – 6 to 9 liters of water at a time. If the weather is hot and dry, then the need for liquid increases, plus everything. After the procedure, it is useful to mulch the surface around the bush.
This type of peony needs to be pruned every spring. Outdated, dried, broken branches are separated from the plant. It is also advisable to prune the shrub after the flowering period. It is necessary to get rid of the heads with seeds and prune the branches a little.
Chinese experts insist on a “general haircut” of peonies every 2 decades. The process consists of cutting off each shoot until it reaches the surface of the ground. This approach ensures high-quality rejuvenation and the development of new kidneys.
A competent haircut procedure ensures good quality and a large number of future flowers.
Tree Peony Transplant
This peony perceives moving to a new place of residence not easily and often even painfully. As a rule, after transplanting, the bush cannot come to life with the same strength for several years. Therefore, it should be produced only if necessary and with extreme caution.
Try not to injure the rhizome of the bush. When digging up the plant, leave the root intact and even with a good layer of soil, which then needs to be washed out with a stream of water. Carefully inspect the root system, remove unhealthy areas, trim overly oblong ones, and sprinkle the sections with a 1% solution of potassium permanganate, finally sprinkling the underground part of the plant crushed coal.
To propagate the bush, divide it into divisions in the area of the root collar. If you did this using cutting tools, be sure to process the trimmed planes. Each of the peonies should have a developed root and several buds, and before planting, place the plant in a clay solution for 30 minutes.
As already noted, reproduction from seeds is a complex and ineffective process, and they just talked about division. We add that this method is applicable for adult plants that are 5 or more years old. It is necessary to prepare the shrub for division in two years. In the first year, the peony must be huddled by 8-10 cm several times. In the second year, repeat the procedure, but raise the ground by 20 cm. As a result, the bush acquires young shoots, which begin to develop the root already with the onset of autumn actively. When the snow melts and the ground warms up a little in the spring, you can already start dividing.
The tree peony also propagates by cuttings. The latter should have a dignified structure. Cut them at the end of June, separating the bud and the woody part of the shoot. Cut off half of the leaves and fix them 1–2 cm deep in containers filled with peat and sand. Cover the containers with a bag or glass and arrange for regular spraying and watering. At the beginning of autumn, they are already planting them in separate pots and keeping them in a warm place until spring comes. When young bushes begin to grow, they can already be planted in open soil.
Reproduction by layering lasts 2 years. To do this, at the end of spring, pick up strong shoots, make a small incision on the underside, insert a peg, gently press them to the ground level, and then bury the shoot with 10 cm earth—water fresh cuttings in the same way as the main bush. At the beginning of autumn, the roots will begin to develop, and it is then that the shoot can be finally separated from the mother bush and planted in its own place.
Finally, the most reliable method is propagation by grafting. The grafting itself should be done on the rhizome of the herbaceous peony variety. In the first week of August, prepare cuttings with a pair of tree peony eyes and sharpen their lower area. Next, insert the stalk into the wedge-shaped groove at the root of the herbaceous peony. Wrap the joint tightly with foil. Place the grafted plants in a container with moistened sawdust and leave them in the shade.
After 30 days, the young peony can already be transplanted into a separate container, while the lower bud should be deepened by 6–8 cm. Then, place flowers in a warm place and grow for one and a half to two years.
Pests and Diseases
Tree peonies are not sore, but like other plants, they are subject to some difficulties. As a rule, ailments happen to old and transplanted peonies.
The biggest nuisance is the formation of gray rot because it can even lead to the death of a flower. The lesion is treated with a solution of manganese or copper sulfate. Please note that rotted parts must be disposed of.
Another problem is the brown spots on the foliage. Also, cut and burn such leaves so that the disease does not spread to other plants. Finally, sprinkle the bush itself with Bordeaux liquid according to the instructions for use.
Preparing for Winter
The tree-like peony is highly frost-resistant. Therefore, in autumn, shoots should be covered solely to block birds from accessing them. At the same time, for latitudes characterized by severe winters, it is recommended to cut the leaves by a third and cover the plants.
Please note that frosts are not as dangerous for the bush as periods of thaw because, at this time, the peony may begin to wake up, but subsequent cold snaps will destroy the entire bush.
To avoid such troubles, fasten the shoots together in mid-autumn, then cover the soil with peat and, at the first freezing wind, cover the tree-like peony with an improvised hut of leaves, a dense layer of fine bark or bags, special bags.
Treelike peony flowers come in a wide range of colors. If you are on the verge of choosing a variety for your own garden, you will surely be inspired by this article with beautiful plants in an exuberant variety of colors and shapes.