splitting zebra grass & peonies

Discussion in 'Plant Propagation' started by fleur52, Oct 8, 2008.

  1. fleur52

    fleur52 Active Member

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    Bruce County, Ont. Canada
    Hi folks - need your help on this one.
    I know it will be much easier to split my zebra grass in the spring when it is first emerging however, do I just whack at it with a spade? The root ball is very large and dense and if I just cut away sections around the edges, won't it look odd when it starts to grow? I can't imagine digging the whole thing up as it is very large. The same problem awaits me with my Japanese Iris.
    Also, my neighbour wants to split her peonies this fall. Is it better to wait til spring or does it really matter?

    Thanks ~
  2. Millet

    Millet Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Denver,Colorado USA
    I don't know much about Zebra grass, but I can help you with Peony. Division is the best way to increase these valuable perennials. This is ordinarily done in late summer or early fall, after blooming is over. It can also be done in spring, though the plants may not bloom the same summer. Peonies being grown for commercial production may be divided every two years, if they are growing well, but home gardeners will probably not want to separate them any more often than once in five years, because it disturbs the plant so much. Dig the whole root carefully and cut it apart, making sure there are at lest three eyes, or sprouts, on EACH ROOT. Plant each section with an eye only a half inch below the surface of the soil. When planted too deep, they will not bloom for MANY YEARS. Some gardeners do not like to disturb their plants, so instead of digging the whole plant, they leave part of it in the ground untouched. To propagate in this way, chop off the outside portions with a sharp spade, making sure there are sprouts on each piece. Leave some soil on the roots, if possible, to reduce the transplant shock. Large pieces of eyeless peony roots, three inches or longer, can be planted vertically, right side up, about two inches below the surface of the soil The best time to do this is in the early spring. In time many of them will grow. Peonies are HEAVY FEEDERS, and both the young and old plants respond to an abundance of manure piled over them in the fall. This is especially important if you want to produce a great many new plants. Great plant - Good luck. - Millet

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