It’s mid-summer and hot. While established peony plants are rather drought tolerant, they will appreciate a good ‘drink of water’ this month. Be sure to water your newly transplanted peonies occasionally – they need the moisture to help establish vigorous roots. First year peony plants are establishing roots, increasing in size over the next two years. By the third season, peony plants develop a tremendous root system to support an abundance of dazzling blooms.
Give your peony plants a quick look to see if they need sprucing up for the remainder of the summer. If you didn’t deadhead (cut the flower head/seed pod) after the plant bloomed and you aren’t planning to collect seed – grab a clippers and cut the (dried up) flower heads off the bush. Discard in the garbage. You can trim down or clip off any stems/leaves that are tattered or died back early this season. A day after a good watering, weeds can be easily removed.
If you are anticipating collecting peony seed, leave the pods to finish developing. They will start to crack open, exposing their seed in late August (varies by variety). You can then collect the seed and sow it into the soil or containers. Keep moist until the fall rains arrive. Check in the spring for germination. Many seeds will sprout the first spring and some will sprout the second spring. You never know what amazing new peony variety you might grow.
We had a Coral Supreme peony flower last week. It may have just been a slow blossom; but, it was 6-7 weeks after they originally bloomed this spring. What a treat to see. Last year we had a Callie’s Memory re-bloom and the year before one of our Coral Charms re-bloomed. Such beautiful flukes of nature.