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Peony care - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Peony care

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

It's almost peony season! This time of year is really the time to get your peonies all set up for the big show that will be coming in a few weeks. They grow really fast this time of year.

One of the first things you want to do is give them a little fertilizer. I use an organic fertilizer. Sprinkle it around the drip line or around the edge of the plant. That will just help them grow a little stronger, get some more and bigger blooms and a healthier plant.

Now, the other thing you want to do is support them, especially when they are small like this. You don't want to wait until they get really big to put a cage around them or a ring on them. Put a cage like we have right here around them when they're small and, of course, they'll grow through it and you'll never even see it. Or you can get these more modern peony rings which are nice because they sit right down into soil. They're nice and round, and the peonies grow through them as the one is doing here. So they'll have beautiful flowers on them. So that will keep them off the ground and nice looking.

Do all peonies flop? Or are there some that are better? There are some tree peonies that have a woodier stem and those won't flop as much as these herbaceous peonies that most people know.

And the final thing to do is to spray for disease. With all of the cool, wet weather we've had this spring, there's going to be a lot of botrytis blight out there. You'll notice it with the red spots on the leaves, and you'll see the actual bud shrivel up and never open up. So, spray Serenade, which is a nice organic product, on it now and do it a couple different times while it's dry. That will help combat that fungus that's in there.

~By Charlie Nardozzi

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