transplanting peonies and wisteria plants

barbaranh(z4 NH)May 2, 2007

Being new, both to gardening and to this forum, I'm hoping for advice on how best to transplant a couple of well-established peony plants and two young (2-year-old) wisteria plants. We're putting in a patio and the plants around the existing deck have got to be moved.

I'm planning to put the wisteria on the side of an old shed, hoping it will grow up and over the top of that small building -- they'll get partial shade in that spot, so I hope that's ok. The peonies will go into an existing flowerbed that gets full sun.

Is now the right time to transplant? The wisteria plants still look dormant, but the peony plants are just beginning to pop up out of the soil.

How big a hole should I dig relative to the root ball, and should I mix fertilizer or anything into the new soil?


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Hi I saw your post here, I usually don't visit this forum but hopped over here looking for advice on keeping cats out of my flower beds. I hope I can help answer your question.

The peony, depending on how big it is, mine are just starting to poke their stalks up, but my friend in portland has already had flowers. I live in Montana so we are later. If it is just in the stalk stage and not real tall it should tolerate a transplant just fine, there is a chance it won't bloom this year but it will come back for next year. I say that only because I don't know how far into the growth cycle it is. As a general rule I follow, I move plants that bloom in the spring in the fall and fall bloomers I move in the spring. Dig the hole 2 x's wider and as deep as the plant sits now. If you do it on a hot day, I would put the rootball in a bucket of water as soon as it comes out of the ground, I do this just as a precaution to make sure there is no drying to the roots. They set fairly deep in the soil so they never see sunlight. Do this especially if the area you plan to move it to is a distance from the original one, also if you should happen to have to dig the hole bigger your plant won't be harmed by sitting too long. I do this with every plant. You could add some compost to the bottom of the hole before placing the plant, then water it well, put a little dirt on it, repeat with water, and keep doing this until the dirt is at the same place on the plant as when you took it from the ground. Going deeper may jarm the plant and not deep enough may cause root damage. Then water it well. They do like full sun so you choose a good spot.

As for the westeria, I have never had one but I would think it would be the same. Just make sure to water them well and they should both be fine. The idea you have for your westeria sounds beautiful, I have never been able to grow them here, must be the climate.
Good luck.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2007 at 7:13PM
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barbaranh(z4 NH)

Hi and thanks for the advice. It's just what I needed to know. The stalks are only up about an inch, so maybe it's not too late for them to bloom this year. I hope. I'll keep in mind putting roots in water while transplanting. Cross your fingers.

I wish I knew how to keep cats out of gardens. Maybe planting some catmint somewhere else will keep him/her occupied and out of your flowers.

I found similar advice (but regarding indoor plants) at this link:

Thanks, and good luck to you too!

    Bookmark   May 3, 2007 at 8:07PM
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If you have to move them you have to but peonies do not tend to like to be moved anytime except fall.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2007 at 8:07PM
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I don't know about wisteria (that is why I am over here)

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 5:58PM
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