Ensure your peony will bloom

The large, red, burgundy, pink, yellow, coral, or white blooms of a peony are striking. The peony, which grows 2 to 4 feet from a tuber, is a perennial that blooms in from spring into summer. But what if you have a healthy looking peony that has not bloomed to deliver those spectacular visual treasures? Following are some tips to correct possible causes of a non-bloomer to ensure your peony will bloom.

Start with the age of the bush. It can take several years at its location before it blooms. The depth of the planted tuber is important. Plant the tuber 1 inch below the surface. If the tuber is planted deeper than 1 inch, the bush may not bloom. 

If your bush had buds, followed by frost conditions, the buds may have been killed by the cold. The peony should do okay the following year.

A peony needs good drainage and full sun, but can handle some afternoon shade. If your non-blooming peony is located in a shaded location, move it to a sunny location (in late October or November). Also, ensure that the peony tuber is not in a low-lying area where its roots can be affected by too much lingering water.

Peonies need room to expand, not just up and out, but down and out – as in the roots need room. If your peony is competing for space, either move the peony or move the space hog. In the fall, after the leaves turns brown, cut the peony to the ground. If you cut the peony back before the foliage turns brown, you risk no flowers the following spring.