Growing and Planting Woody Peonies
Not Difficult to Grow, Just a Few Gardening Adjustments
Woody Peony culture is not all that different than for herbaceous peonies, but a few simple adjustments are helpful in getting the best from your plants. The main difference in their culture is the depth in which the root system is initially planted-deep. Since many ‘woodies’ are purchased as grafts (plants with a herbaceous nurse root) they require a planting depth of at least 4 inches, so that the plants can produce their own roots from buried stem(s). This simple act insures good rooting, but also insures survival of the plant in cases where stems are lost to above ground conditions.
Different woody peony groups can be selected for winter hardiness, but most can be grown with excellent results in USA Hardiness Zones 4b to 8. In the coldest zones Rockii hybrids are recommended and somewhat warmer zones do well with all types. The lutea hybrids often lose stems during cold winters, but if planted properly, will easily regrow them from below the ground. Through the selection of quality cultivars that are suited for the climate they will be grown in, woody peonies are something that should provide years of enjoyment. See Additional Resources below for further information.