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Peony James Pillow

James Pillow is a beautiful large fragrant soft pink peony with strong stems making it excellent for cut flowers. The curvy edged petals on the interior tend to be soft pink while the exterior tend towards cream.

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Peony Care

All our peonies are grown right here in New Zealand and are grown especially for tuber production, giving you the strongest and most vigorous plants possible. They are hardy and require little care but are fussy about where they grow.

Choosing a location
Peonies need to be in an open position where they get full sun. They don’t like to be shaded by trees, shrubs or over-hanging branches. By the time they’re fully grown (after about three years) they need to have at least a metre worth of free space around them.

Peonies are cold climate plants and need two or three nice white frosts to be sure that they will flower well the following spring. Being planted in the open as described above not only allows full sun, but also means that they will be exposed to any frosts and not sheltered by buildings or trees. Well-drained soil is best, but as long as the soil never becomes water-logged they should be fine.

Plant your tubers with around four to six centimetres of soil over the top of them. Any deeper and the root may be too well protected from the cold and produce lots of lovely leaf growth but no or few flowers. Don’t be afraid to use a ruler! Be careful about pressing the tuber down once it’s planted by treading it in - you'll likely break the tuber by doing this.

In colder areas they can be planted at the deeper end of the range as the cold will easily reach down to them. In warmer areas with lighter frosts, shallower planting is better as it ensures that they will feel the cold.

After Planting:
Very little care is needed after planting, but if you don't get frosts in your area, you can give the tubers some winter chilling by placing bags of ice on the ground above the crown of the tuber several times during winter. Leave the ice in a bag or it may drown the tuber as it melts.

After Flowering
Like all the bulbs and tubers we sell, peonies need their leaves to feed the plant and help it grow strongly for the following season. Removing the leaves or plant foliage too early can mean fewer flowers the next season so it is very important to leave the foliage on the plant and not cut the shoots back until they start to die back in early autumn. After they’ve changed colour you can cut the plants down to ground level, removing all the prunings to prevent the spread of any fungal infections to the new growth.

Common issues when growing Peonies:
If you divide or transplant your peony it can take two or three years to feel settled enough in its new spot. If you’ve followed the other tips, then a bit of a time should help it re-establish and produce flowers again.
     Too much fertiliser
Too much nitrogen will promote leaf growth at the expense of blooms.
     Too young
Peonies take their time to get established. The first season may only produce one or two stems, which may be short and may not carry any flowers at all.
     Too much shade
Peonies need full sun and shade may result in few or no flowers
     Not enough cold
Will result in no flowers
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