Diseased Peonies

tdvpnp(suburb Phila)November 5, 2005

My peonies have done very well for many years, but because of the summer drough( I think)they beacame diseased( I think white mildew) and died. Should I cut them, or just pull them out and wait until next year to see if they recover. They are in a shady area.

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irish_rose_grower(z7 LI NY)

Sounds like powdery mildew. The ones I have in part shade got Powdery mildew bad this year. I just cut mine back. They should recover just fine.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2005 at 7:50PM
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Did they really do well, I would be surprised if your planting your peony in ??? shade ?? has done well by them. Peony is definitely a full sun lover.

Of course, depending on other factors, the position of them in ? shade can contribute to their retaining dampness, which can often be the lead reason why mildew is rampant.

Mildew is a disease, treated like others, usually by a fungicide, but the soil also comes into play. Fungus spores can hide in the soil to infect the plant later when weather circumstances invite it.

If for no other reason I suggest you try to improve the drainage in the area of your peonies. Of course moving them to a sunny place can often solve the problem, but you would have to pay the price of the move by having them refuse to bloom for next season......and possibly even the season after that.

But possibly your shade is not all that shady, you probably get a good amount of mottled sunlight, enough to satisfy the plant's willingness to perform.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2005 at 11:44AM
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