How can I best harvest and preserve my peony flowers for cut flowers?


How can I best harvest and preserve my peony flowers for cut flowers?


Peony flowers are harvested for cut flowers when they are in bud, before they open.  Flower buds that are showing color and are soft in the center are at the best stage to harvest for cut flowers.  After harvest, flowers can be placed immediately into vases of warm water for bouquets or they can be stored in a refrigerator for later use. Flower stems that are stored in a refrigerator should be leafless and wrapped tightly in moist paper or clear plastic to keep them supple until needed.  Moist refrigeration allows you to keep peony flower buds fresh for several weeks.  When ready for bouquets, simply remove them from refrigeration, recut the stems, and place in warm water to initiate flower opening.

Learn more about growing peonies in Iowa in this article: Growing Peonies in Iowa

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