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Peonies: Help - Tree in my peonies

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Cris316
Port Norris, NJ
(Zone 7b)

April 3, 2010
12:54 PM

Post #7677219

There are several large peonies bushes that were here when we
bought our home 7 years ago. Within the last 2 years this tree has
started to grow in the garden. While trying to dig it out today I noticed
that several peony shoots "seemed" to be growing directly out of it.

I believe the peony is called "Cherry Bomb" or is the closest in
size, color & shape of what is growing there. But is it possible that
after all these years it's actually a peony tree?

Hoping that someone who has a peony tree will take a look at the photo
and tell me if what I have has the same bark as one. Not sure if I should
take it out or just let it be.

Thanks,
Cris

Thumbnail by Cris316
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ah3815
Kansas City, MO

April 3, 2010
5:52 PM

Post #7677832

The bark on the tree trunk that is shown in the picture is one of the prunus family, probably a plum but several other choices, peach, cherry, apricot. It appears large enough to have fruit so it should be blooming shortly.

Your peony is just a regular, non-tree, peony.
Cris316
Port Norris, NJ
(Zone 7b)

April 4, 2010
5:43 AM

Post #7678754

omg you're kidding! I have to laugh cause years ago on
the Other side of my property I planted several dwarf fruits
which never grew.

Thank you so much for the info. I'll treat it more carefully
when I remove it from the peony bed.

Ah I appreciate your response. Have a blessed day.
cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 5, 2010
6:15 AM

Post #7680974

You will always see photos of tree peony blooms. Many are grafts. This is what a tree peony looks like in the spring. As you can see, it resembles a rose bush more than a tree. You may be able to see the buds that are already visible even though they are more than a month prior to bloom.

Thumbnail by cathy166
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Cris316
Port Norris, NJ
(Zone 7b)

April 5, 2010
1:51 PM

Post #7681996

Cathy,
Thanks for the photo. That Was the problem - saw many
pics with the flowers in bloom but none of the "tree" as
the leaves were covering the stems.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

April 11, 2010
2:33 AM

Post #7696029

Cathy 166 I came here because I have 2 Tree Peonys purchased last year. They were blooming when purchased. I checked Crickit Hill to see what conditions were needed for the plants.Their website said TP's dont bloom for 5 years. I am assuming this is in ref. to their peonies.
Question: Will mine bloom this year?
What soil conditions do they like,? mine are planted #1 in woodsy area with clay and natueraly occuring mulch and the other#2 is planted between 2 fir trees where it gets half day sun.Photo.

Thumbnail by ge1836
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cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 11, 2010
8:48 AM

Post #7696609

First thing about tree peonies is that they must be planted much deeper than herbaceous peonies, about 8-10 inches deep. Many are grafts, and if planted too shallow, the herbaceous part of the plant will take over. Even so, if you see a shoot from the base of the tree peony, clip is off.

If that is your tree peony on the right, it is in full foliage. It needs good drainage and good sun exposure. Also, do not prune, as new growth comes from the woody plant.

I have 4 tree peonies . They start growing before the herbaceous peonies know that winter is over. As soon as they start growing, you can see the formation of the buds. From there it is approximately 2 months before they bloom. They are shaped more like big rosebuds that come to a point than the round marble-like buds of herbaceous peonies. If you look at my photo above, you can see the 3 buds in the very early growth, so that's what I know I'll get. They are the green among the red stems. And they blooms will be huge.

What I don't know is what the bloom will look like. I generally get 1-2 blooms like this and the others will be all pink. Don't be afraid to pick them, and the blooms last about a week.

I have planted peonies that had no more than 2 eyes and peonies that were in a a pot in bloom. After more than 3 years, all the stumpy little roots produce lovely blooms and are coming up with many stems. They do as well as the established peonies that were here when we moved in 5 years ago. The bowl of beauty in the pot is still a meager plant. Generally the peonies come up before the the leaves come out on the trees so there is more sun available in a woody area except, of course, for the firs.

If all your leave are out, I am somewhat surprised as I am in zone 6 and our leaves are not fully out. That is what leads me to believe you haven't planted deep enough. I just checked my plants, and the leaves are just starting to open more.

Thumbnail by cathy166
Click the image for an enlarged view.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

April 11, 2010
9:25 AM

Post #7696692

OMG sorry that was a picture from last year.
The information you gave me is great. I was tempted to trim the woody parts.I will err on the side of caution and leave it alone.
This pic was taken just now.
I am an old gardener and loved TPeonies forever but didnt have the right place for them until I moved 3 years ago.
Have you ever been to these gardens?
The Gratwicks live there.

Thumbnail by ge1836
Click the image for an enlarged view.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

April 11, 2010
9:27 AM

Post #7696697

http://www.linwoodgardens.org/
ah3815
Kansas City, MO

April 11, 2010
12:23 PM

Post #7697148

Contrary to the common wisdom that tree peonies are full sun plants if you see pictures of them in the wild they seem to take advantage of and shrub or small tree's shade that they can. Tree peonies that have dark red blooms need to be shaded since the darker colors absorb heat. With the absorption of heat the flowers in direct sun will only last a couple of days at the most. In light shade and cooler temps they can last a week or more. Visit your local gardens where you find tree peonies you will find that most are planted to be shaded at least in the afternoon if not all day. By shade I am not talking about heavy shade but what you would find under a high tree canopy.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

April 11, 2010
12:30 PM

Post #7697172

Yes the yellow one I have is between 2 fir trees. I bought it locally from a man who had hybred his own trees for years. He said he has stopped because he is 80 and wouldnt see the plants mature. He also grows Japanese Maples. All his TPeonies are under Maples and Cricket Hill puts umbrellas over their dark T Peonies,makes quite a charming sight.
This is one of 6 blooms that were on the tree when the girls gave it to me for Mothers Day last year.

Thumbnail by ge1836
Click the image for an enlarged view.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

April 11, 2010
12:30 PM

Post #7697177

I was so enchanted with it I bought this one.

Thumbnail by ge1836
Click the image for an enlarged view.

cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 11, 2010
1:19 PM

Post #7697284

Judging from your photo, it looks like you have a bloom coming.

That's the Nishiki in the photo, but only some of the blooms come out like that.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

April 11, 2010
1:34 PM

Post #7697307

Thanks .So I could have more?
The leaves are so folded Its hard to tell if there are other blooms comming.
cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 11, 2010
4:08 PM

Post #7697718

I cannot tell because I cannot see the other side, but it must be happy where it is. However, do not be disappointed if your flower is not mottled. The results are somewhat unpredictable and not 100%. I am sure you will if you have more than 1 bloom.

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

April 12, 2010
2:36 AM

Post #7698718

You have been such a great help. I will rename the file for the yellow TP Nishiki.
RrrrrGrrrr
Atlanta, GA
(Zone 7b)

April 12, 2010
5:48 AM

Post #7698971

cathy166, my Nishiki was also producing some all pink blooms. After a couple of years, I realized they were all on the same branch, just below the point of the graft. I hated doing it, but I cut off that branch and have had all bi-color blooms since.. (the graft point was really high up on the trunk..)

ge1836

ge1836
Pittsford, NY
(Zone 6a)

April 12, 2010
6:32 AM

Post #7699108

i am learning a lot from you.
cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 12, 2010
8:44 PM

Post #7701129

Excellent idea, but the reason I haven't clipped the all pink one is that it is HUGE and VERY pretty. You are right as it is always on the same branch. I just haven't the heart. However, I do have the heart to remove the herbaceous peony growing at the base of one of my tree peonies. It may need to be replanted it deeper.
RrrrrGrrrr
Atlanta, GA
(Zone 7b)

April 13, 2010
7:27 AM

Post #7702147

I understand why you chose to keep the all pink branch. The pink flowers are beautiful and match nicely with the bi-color blooms on the other branches. I dug up all my tree peonies five years ago to make way for a house renovation project. At that time, I cut off the branch and avoided ruining the symmetry of the peony by replanting at a different angle. The trunk now has a nice bonsai-like bend near the ground. I like how it turned out, but I agonized about pruning something that grows so slowly to begin with..

My Kamata Nishiki has a bloom on it today. Here's a pic..

Thumbnail by RrrrrGrrrr
Click the image for an enlarged view.

RrrrrGrrrr
Atlanta, GA
(Zone 7b)

April 13, 2010
7:29 AM

Post #7702155

The Kamata and Shima Nishiki's together..

Thumbnail by RrrrrGrrrr
Click the image for an enlarged view.

RrrrrGrrrr
Atlanta, GA
(Zone 7b)

April 13, 2010
7:31 AM

Post #7702158

Another angle.. There was a third Shima Nishiki bloom, but I got greedy and cut it for inside..

Thumbnail by RrrrrGrrrr
Click the image for an enlarged view.

magnolialover
Southern, WI
(Zone 5a)

April 13, 2010
7:34 AM

Post #7702163

I always remove the dead parts of my tree peony in the spring now, because it is very easy to see where the new growth is coming from and it cleans up quite nicely. If I didn't do anything to it, it would seem to me leaving the dead portion of the branches would make it look a bit wooly, but maybe the new growth would eventually cover it all up. I don't know, but I have always found dead portions of a tree peony not to come back to life, so tidying it up by trimming those dead portions of branches here in zone 5 has always worked for me.
cathy166
Stamford, CT
(Zone 6b)

April 13, 2010
6:55 PM

Post #7703800

RrrrrGrrrr, those peonies are delicious. Enjoy!
ah3815
Kansas City, MO

April 13, 2010
10:01 PM

Post #7704171

You could try doing some cuttings from the pink branch and trying to root it. I have several older books that make it appear that rooting tree peony cuttings was quite common before grafting became easier. Use a root stimulator and place the cutting in damp sand. For ease you could cut the end toward the plant at an angle and the top end flat. You do lose some of the cutting but by doing the angle at least you know which end is down.
soilsandup
Sacramento, CA
(Zone 9a)

April 13, 2010
11:51 PM

Post #7704200

I have tried several times to root a branch that I have pruned from my tree peonies - but no luck so far. Has anyone been successful? I have never used any rooting hormone, and probably do not watch it as carefully as I should. I cut 3-4 branches off from this plant every year now to keep the size in check, so I have plenty of branches to try from.

Dianne

Thumbnail by soilsandup
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RrrrrGrrrr
Atlanta, GA
(Zone 7b)

April 14, 2010
5:39 AM

Post #7704479

Dianne, that peony is stunning.. How old is it?
soilsandup
Sacramento, CA
(Zone 9a)

April 14, 2010
10:07 AM

Post #7705093

rrgg - it is about 10 years old. Here is a photo from 2007 that shows the layering as the prunings take place. In this photo, I would prune the taller branches in the fall to bring the overall shape lower. Once the branches gets over 6 feet tall, they tend to topple over due to the weight of the blooms; so I prune it to keep it under 5 feet tall.

Thumbnail by soilsandup
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