Do tree peonies need winter protection?


Do tree peonies need winter protection?


Tree peonies are small woody shrubs.  Unlike herbaceous peonies, the stems of tree peonies do not die back to the ground in fall.  Tree peonies can be successfully grown in USDA Hardiness Zones 4 to 8. 

Cold winter temperatures can damage young tree peonies (especially those in northern portions of Iowa.)  Rabbits can also damage plants in winter.  Rabbit damage can be prevented by encircling each plant with chicken wire or hardware cloth in fall.  Fill the enclosure with a light, airy material, such as straw or pine needles, to protect young plants from cold winter temperatures. 

Protective materials should be in place by mid to late November.  Remove the materials in early to mid-April. 


Links to this article are strongly encouraged, and this article may be republished without further permission if published as written and if credit is given to the author, Horticulture and Home Pest News, and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. If this article is to be used in any other manner, permission from the author is required. This article was originally published on . The information contained within may not be the most current and accurate depending on when it is accessed.