Dividing Peonies

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Watch as Better Homes and Gardens shows you some tips for dividing peonies! The peony flower can bloom season after season without becoming cramped, but you may have to occassionally divide up clumps of these garden flowers. The best time to transplant peonies is in the fall, so wait until after a hard frost hits your area before heading out to your garden. Begin the moving process by cutting the stems to the ground and throwing them away. Dig up the clump by sticking a spade into the ground and forming a perimeter around the peony flowers. Once the crown and roots lift easily from the ground, remove any excess dirt from the roots to reveal the underground plant parts. You should be able to see large tuburous roots, small fibrous roots, a crown, and eyes at the top of the crown. This one large mother plant can be divided into numerous smaller plants. Using a garden knife or hand pruner, cut through the crown of the peony plants. Each section should have one healthy tuburous root and three to five eyes on top of the crown. Dig a shallow hole for these garden plants and place a division of the peony with eyes facing up, covering it with about 1-1/2 inches of soil. Replant these plants three feet apart from one another in a site that drains fairly easily. Water these plants throughly and keep the soil moist until the ground freezes. Once this happens, cover the plant with four inches of mulch to protect it from the elements. Growing peonies once they have been divided can take up to a few years for them to get settled. Be patient, and in time, your garden will produce lovely bunches of these beautiful perennial flowers for many more years to come!



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