Why Doesn’t My Peony Bloom?


Peonies are one of the early bloomers in many Southern gardens. Usually very hardy, even peony plants have a few requirements to ensure that they will produce beautiful flowers for many years to come.

Planting Depth

  • Peonies need to be planted with their eyes no more than 1 to 3 inches below the surface of the soil. If they are planted too deeply, the peony will have delayed blooms, or no blooms at all.

Soil Depletion

  • When a peony has been in one spot for several years, the soil can become depleted of nutrients. This can eventually cause the peony to stop blooming and become yellow and spindly.


  • Peonies require at least six hours of daily full sunlight to produce blooms. Avoid planting peonies near plants or shrubs that will grow tall and eventually block the sunlight.


  • Peonies will fail to boom, but will have an abundance of foliage, if they are fed with a fertilizer mix that contains too much nitrogen. They prefer a balanced fertilizer applied twice a year.


  • Disease, such as Phytophthora blight, or Botrytis blight, can infect peonies and cause them not to bloom. Proper sanitation, and using fungicides as needed, can often prevent these problems.


  • A late freeze can damage the peony flower buds and they will not bloom. Another weather-related reason for a lack of blooms is dry weather, which will result in fewer flowers the next year.

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