How To Get Rid Of Peonies That Are Taking Over The Garden

It is hard to match the beauty of a blooming peony. These large blooming flowers range in colors from the most delicate white to a deep crimson. Additionally, peonies are low-maintenance, making them an excellent choice for gardeners who want a stunning display without the level of care other flowers require. They're hardy and resilient, perfect for new hobbyists. Yet, as rewarding as they are to grow, peonies can get out of hand quickly. Thankfully, you can get rid of peonies taking over your garden by spending more hands-on time with your flowers.

Specifically, you can prevent the spread of new peonies by deadheading and dividing the population you wish to keep. Peonies are perennials that grow and spread each year if left unattended. A garden of only peonies is certainly beautiful, but most gardeners want diversity. When peonies overtake a garden, they compete with other flowers for nutrients. Routine peony maintenance is the key to enjoying this gorgeous flower and other species, too.

How to remove peonies

If peonies have overrun your garden, you can restore order. There are multiple ways to remove an unwanted abundance of flowers. The first and simplest option is to pull the flowers out of the soil manually. Though it is the most labor-intensive process, it is an effective way to control your peony population. Dig around the plant's base and below the roots using a shovel. Ensuring you've removed the roots in their entirety is the key step in any plant removal. Once you've removed the flower, dispose of or compost it, roots, and all.

Another option for your peony invasion is herbicide. It is quicker, but if misapplied, can drift and kill healthy plants nearby. The best way to avoid any problems with a chemical herbicide is to follow the brand's instructions. Apply the herbicide to the leaves and stems of the peony plant, making sure to cover all areas. Most plants will die off within a few days.

For an all-natural and less time-consuming solution, try covering the plants with a layer of newspaper or cardboard. The layer prevents sunlight permeation, thus starving the flowers of a fundamental nutrient and killing them. Anchor the layers down at the corners to ensure they do not blow away. When compared to other options, this method takes longer to deliver results. However, it takes far less time to set up, and covering a large area is less labor-intensive than pulling by hand or applying herbicide.

Preventing another peony invasion

Fans of peonies know that keeping them in check will allow them to flourish without cramping your other plants. There are multiple beginner-friendly methods to keep your peonies under control. One easy solution is regularly deadheading the flowers by cutting a wilted or spent blossom from its stem. Deadheading prevents the plant from producing more seeds that will germinate in the soil.

Separating your peonies not only keeps them from taking over but also promotes healthy growth in the flowers you wish to keep. Dividing flowers gives them more room to root and become more vibrant. Growing peonies in pots or containers is another great preventative method to keep them from spreading. Because potted plants do not mingle in the garden with other flowers, they will not compete. That way, you can enjoy the beauty of peonies without worrying about them spreading too far too quickly.