Tree peonies and acidic soil

I bought a couple of Japanes tree peonies after being impressed by the blooms from several herbaceous varieties that I planted two years ago. The staff member at the nursery advised that I plant the tree peonies in an acidic soil, and she recommended that I get an azalea mix along with Miracid.
However, after reading my gardening book, it was indicated that tree peonies prefer slightly alkaline soils (6.5 to 7.5 ph). We have extremely hard clay soil where we live and I would like to simply grow the peonies in pots.
Do I plant them in the azalea mix or should I disregard the advice from the garden staff and plant the tree peonies in a normal potting mix?
Thank you.
Jeffery
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The best peonies I have seen are growing in the middle of healthy turfgrass. I'd go with pH neutral to slightly alkaline. That range also keeps more Phosphorus available in the soil.
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On 19 May 2006 19:25:57 -0700

Hi Jeffrey,
Trust the book, I'd guess. Lots of info on tree peonies from the specialist nursery Kelways:
http://www.kelways.co.uk/acatalog/Care_of_your_Tree_Peony.html
Nice place to browse for cultivars too, even if you're not going to order.
-E
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Emery Davis
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Emery Davis On 19 May 2006 19:25:57 -0700
"Jeff" snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:
I bought a couple of Japanes tree peonies after being impressed b the blooms from several herbaceous varieties that I planted two year ago. The staff member at the nursery advised that I plant the tree peonies in an acidic soil, and she recommended that I get an azalea mix along with Miracid.
However, after reading my gardening book, it was indicated that tree peonies prefer slightly alkaline soils (6.5 to 7.5 ph). We have extremely hard clay soil where we live and I would like to simpl grow the peonies in pots.
Hi Jeffrey,
Trust the book, I'd guess. Lots of info on tree peonies from the specialist nursery Kelways:
http://tinyurl.com/mnfxa
Nice place to browse for cultivars too, even if you're not going t order.
-E
-- Emery Davis You can reply to snipped-for-privacy@ebayadelkadell.applecom by removing the well known companies
there is no problem growing the tree peonies in pots as long as follow the directions in your plant book. the information that th person from the garden center gave u is certainly not for tree peonie geshhh:(. peonies do prefer a slightly alkaline soil and the biggest secret t the tree peony is to keep it moist but not soaking do not to let i stand in water thats the worse thing for it and it also needs about hours of sunlight a day. good luck, sockiescat
-- sockiescat
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Thank you so much for all of your replies and links. I will definitely plant the peonies in regular soil as indicated by my book and your advice.
Thanks,
Jeff
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Jeff wrote:

Jeffery,
Ignore the advice from nursery staff member. I have been growing Japanese tree peonies for over 25 years and I have never grown them in anything other than ordinary soil and I have used regular fertilizer. As you can see from pictures from my web site they do very good without any special soil or fertilizer: http://members.iglou.com/brosen/s_page3.htm
--
Bill R. (Ohio Valley, U.S.A)

Gardening Since 1969
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