How deep to plant bare root peonies?

linnea56(z5 IL)March 21, 2012

At a Flower and Garden show 2 days ago I bought some bare root peonies. They look very fresh to me, not dry at all, and have shoots about an inch high. With the extremely warm weather we have been having, I think I need to get these in the ground as soon as possible. (Tell me if I have this wrong). They are white Festiva Maxima and red Karl Lagerfeld.

The only peonies I have ever had have been pass alongs, so I do not know how I should plant these, or how deep. I know they do not bloom if planted too deeply. The vendor said to plant them with 4 inches of dirt over the tips of the shoots, but that did not sound right to me. Thanks!

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Nancy zone 6

It wouldn't work in my zone to plant them that deep. I think 2" is the recommended depth, I tend to barely cover mine & they do great for me. I'm a warmer zone, but I think that 2" over the root would work. I'd plant them asap since they have that growth, & cover them if you get a hard frost. They can handle a light frost fine at this stage. Or you can pot them up at the depth you want & plant out later. They are really pretty forgiving. You will love them, I have both of these & they are beautiful.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2012 at 7:39AM
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earthworm(6 Pennsylvania)

I have read 2 inches over the top of the roots, so the hole could well be 4 inches deep...Don't forget the "well-rotted-manure or compost..
Well drained soil helps, if not, raise the peony bed by several inches.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2012 at 10:06AM
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linnea56(z5 IL)

Thanks for your replies. Year back I planted one too deep, and never got any flowers. Now I'm waiting for the weather to warm up again! I have bagged compost, bought last fall. Will that work?

    Bookmark   April 1, 2012 at 12:50PM
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