Peony Root - Up or Down??

Discussion in 'Seed Starting / Propagation' started by cherylad, Jan 18, 2013.

  1. cherylad

    cherylad Countess of Cute-ification Plants Contributor

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    I just purchased two Peonies the other day. And I can't make up my mind which end is which.
    Is the white new growth roots or eyes?
    Thanks in advance!

    [​IMG]
    Peony Root ( photo / image / picture from cherylad's Garden )
     
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  3. marlingardener

    marlingardener Happy

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    Cheryl, that doesn't look like any peony root I have ever seen. Are you sure it wasn't mis-labeled? Peony roots look more like an octopus, at least in my experience. Also the only ones I've seen are tan or light brown. Is this root soft to the touch?
    If there are little red bumps, somewhat like the eyes of a potato, that is the new growth. Just make sure that those are pointing up.
     
  4. Palustris

    Palustris Young Pine

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    The white growth is the top of the root. You can just about see the top of the old stem from when it was growing. That is one very poor quality root, all the feeder roots have been cut off. It is going to need some looking after to get it to flowering size. Be prepared for a long wait.
     
  5. cherylad

    cherylad Countess of Cute-ification Plants Contributor

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    I didn't know what to expect when I opened the package. And this will more than likely be the last time I purchase anything like this where you can't see the quality. Oh well... live and learn.

    Eric... do I put the white end down? And if so... how far beneath the ground? the package says 1-2 inches.
     



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  6. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    Cheryl, The tapered end (the one on the left side of the picture) is the end to plant down. The little white specks are the new buds getting ready to put out growth. Plant that end up with the soil about level with the buds, then cover the "crown" with a mulch to shield them from freeze or sun burn.
     
  7. Jerry Sullivan

    Jerry Sullivan Garden Experimenter Plants Contributor

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    It looks like you received a single arm of the octopus. Peonies fall into the fleshy root category, divided in the fall they should have 3 crown buds on each clump. What you have is hardly a clump. With lots of care it will develop but it will take awhile and any setbacks would spell disaster. My mother had peonies, I have one. I moved it one year, it hated to be transplanted. It gave me the impression that it did not like to be disturbed. I am presently(last fall/this spring) re-doing its bed but I did not touch it. Spring will tell.

    Jerry
     
  8. Palustris

    Palustris Young Pine

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    Sorry I did not make myself clear. Carolyn is correct. As is Jerry.
    Paeonies have the reputation of not liking to be moved, which is only partly accurate. Moved when completely dormant and with as much root as possible and re-planted with the buds at or above ground level, they flower pretty soon after.
    The buds need cold ripening to turn them from leaf buds to flower buds.
     
  9. cherylad

    cherylad Countess of Cute-ification Plants Contributor

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    Thank you all so much for the help... I would have guessed to plant it the other way.
    The package said "guaranteed to grow" and I made sure to keep the receipt. You can bet I'll make a big fuss to get my money back if it doesn't grow even a tiny bit. :-x
    Never again.... lesson learned... if you can't see it... don't buy it.
     
  10. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    Cheryl, You did fine without knowing what to expect. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Many of these racks are economical ways to get a perennial plant without the expense. I think the trick to buying these this way is by feel (are they firm, are they weighty) and shop as early as they put them out for sale. Don't hesitate waiting for them to go on sale, by then they are usually dead or so far past prime they aren't worth the investment or nurture it takes to revive them if that is even possible.
     
  11. cherylad

    cherylad Countess of Cute-ification Plants Contributor

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    Carolyn... It was such a mix... for instance, the Astilbe was already growing in the bag. The Red Hot Pokers are small (but I would have bought them anyhow because I've been working on getting some established here). The Bleeding Hearts appeared to be "okay".
    I guess only time will tell if any of these will sprout.
    I think I'll skip these bins from now on unless they start using clear packaging.
    Wait... I take that back.... note to self... STOP! Patience Cheryl!
    :stew2:
     

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