How to Care for Cut Peonies


If you have peonies in your flower bed, you already know how much interest and color they can add to the landscape. However, you’re missing out if you aren’t cutting a few of the big splashy blooms for indoor enjoyment. Cut the peonies in the bud stage, put them in a big vase, and they’ll add drama to your indoor environment for at least a week.

Moderately Easy


Things You’ll Need
  • Sharp garden shears
  • Bucket
  • Floral preservative or household bleach and sugar
  • Large vase
    1. Cut peonies when color is showing but buds are not open. Use a pair of sharp garden shears, and try to leave at least 14 inches of stem.
    2. Put the peony in a bucket of lukewarm water immediately. With the stem underwater, and cutting at an angle, snip an inch off the bottom of the stem. Remove any leaves that would be submersed.
    3. Fill a large vase with room-temperature water. Add floral preservative to the vase according to the directions on the package. If you don’t have floral preservative, add a teaspoon of bleach and a teaspoon of white sugar to each quart of water.
    4. Put the peonies in the vase, and keep the vase out of direct sunlight. Change the water every other day and add new preservative.

Tips & Warnings

  • Never remove more than 1/3 of the stems on a peony bush. Although a light pruning is healthy, removing too much will causing the plant to produce fewer blooms the following year.

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