This is more of a reminder than a blog entry. For those of us who grow Peonies, it is time to start paying attention to them and thinking about putting up the Peony hoops. When in full flower, the flowers can be so heavy that the stems flop over, squashing the plants around them and making it impossible to enjoy the flowers. A Peony hoop, a support consisting of two rings held up by three legs, keeps the plants upright and allows you to really enjoy them. They don’t cost very much, and are well worth the investment. Here’s a link to them on Amazon, although they are probably also available from your local garden center.
The downside is remembering to put them up. In the spring, Peony shoots are very straight and don’t look like they will ever need staking. They tend to be one of the first things up, so you notice them. Then other plants start to grow, and you tend to forget about the peonies, until they are so big that wrestling them into the hoops requires two people and a stiff shot of Whiskey.
So although it may seem like too much and too early, put the hoops on when the plants are young. They will soon be hidden by foliage, and it’s SO much easier! Save the Whiskey for congratulating yourself on a job well done.