What are ITO peonies and how to grow them?
What are IT peonies?
ITO-peonies are a relatively new group of garden peonies, appreciated by florists all over the world for the unique beauty of their flowers, plentiful and long flowering, relative unpretentiousness and high winter hardiness.
ITO-peonies got their name in honor of the famous Japanese scientist and breeder Toichi Ito, who in the middle of the last century was actively engaged in the selection of garden peonies. At that time, many dreamed of creating large-flowered varieties of grassy peonies with yellow flowers. Toichi Ito decided to achieve this goal by transferring the outstanding qualities of yellow-flowered tree-like peonies to grassy ones. The breeder conducted more than 1,200 crosses of grassy and tree-like forms of peonies, resulting in several plants with the desired yellow color of the flower.
ITO peonies inherited the best qualities of their parental forms:
- very large flowers of the original pastel colors;
- plentiful and long flowering;
- beautiful dark green foliage;
- powerful, garter-free grassy stems;
- high winter hardiness.
Agricultural engineering ITO-pions.
ITO-peonies should be planted in elevated and well-lit areas with a low level of groundwater. ITO peonies will feel best on loamy, well-fertilized soils with a high humus content. The acidity of the soil should be slightly alkaline or neutral. The best time for planting ITO-pions is the end of August - the beginning of September. The optimal size of the landing pit is 50-60 cm in depth and 60-80 cm in diameter. "Divisions" of the ITO-pions are planted in such a way that they are located strictly in the center of the planting pit and with a slight slope, and the regeneration buds are at a depth of 3-5 cm from the soil surface level. Planting pits are filled with pre-prepared nutrient soil, consisting of a mixture of humus and garden soil with the addition of a small amount of phosphorus fertilizers. For deoxidation, a small amount of ash or dolomite flour should be added to the soil. In the case of the purchase of planting material of ITO-pions with a closed root system, it is necessary to transship the plant from the container into the planting pit without breaking an earthen coma, after which, observing the necessary planting depth, fill the planting pit with nutritious soil. After planting, the soil surface should be mulched to maintain its moisture and air permeability.
The care for ITO peonies is generally the same as for ordinary grassy peonies. In the summer, plants require regular watering and top dressing. It is especially important to provide the plants with sufficient moisture in late spring - early summer, when the stems grow actively and buds form, and also in late summer, when the regeneration buds are actively forming in the plants. It is best to water ITO peonies in the evening. In hot weather, it is advisable to produce daily surface wetting of the soil. ITO-peonies are watered exclusively “under the root”. The sprinkling method is not recommended to be used, since at the same time plants are very easily infected with fungal diseases. After each watering, the soil under the peony bushes should be loosened. The more oxygen the roots receive, the more beautiful and magnificent the flowering will be.
Subject to proper agricultural technology, ITO-peonies in the first two years after planting do not require any top dressing. Fertilize plants should be from the third year of their cultivation. In spring and early summer (during active growth and budding), fertilizing plants is carried out with nitrogen fertilizers, and at the end of summer (during the formation of renewal buds) - phosphorus-potassium complex.
The buds that appear in the first two years should be removed immediately, since the flowering of young plants can significantly weaken their development. In adults, already well-formed plants, the first pruning is done in mid-June. At this time, the "old" dried flowers are removed, which contributes to the laying of new buds renewal. The more they form, the more magnificent and more beautiful the flowering of ITO-peonies will be next year. When trimming, it is also important to carefully remove all leaves and petals that have fallen to the ground. This is done to reduce the risk of developing fungal diseases. For the second time, ITO-peonies are cut off in the fall - in the first half of October. This time, almost the entire aerial part of the plants is removed, after which it is burned to exclude infection of plantings with fungal infections. During the autumn removal of the aerial part of the ITO-pions, it should be remembered that the main buds of renewal, which ensure the further development and flowering of plants, are formed on the roots in the depths of the soil.
ITO-peonies are very winter-hardy plants, therefore they do not require obligatory shelter for the winter. In particularly cold winters, you can sprinkle planting pits with peonies with a layer of well-rotted manure. In the spring it will need to be carefully removed, being careful not to damage the tender young shoots of plants.
ITO peonies begin to bloom in the second or third year after planting. Their first flowers are usually not too beautiful - they have an irregular shape and curved petals, but then everything comes back to normal, and plants begin to delight their owners with luxurious flowering. According to most gardeners, ITO peonies gain maximum beauty in the fourth or fifth year of their development.
Where can I buy Ito-peonies?
High-quality planting stock of Ito-pions can be purchased in the online search of Agroholding “SEARCH”: www.online.semenasad.ru
The full collection of Ito-Pions from the Agroholding “SEARCH” can be found on the official website of the company: www.semenasad.ru.
A brief description of the most popular ITO peonies.
ITO-peony of a medium-late flowering period, winner of the gold medal of the American Society of Peony Lovers in 2006, the prize "For Landscape Merit" in 2009 and other prestigious awards. Terry flowers, very large, with a diameter of up to 25 cm, fragrant, lemon yellow with red strokes at the base of the petals. The height of the bush is 80-90 cm. Flowering is long and very plentiful. An adult bush can form up to 60 flowers per season.
ITO peony of a medium late flowering period, winner of the gold medal of the American Society of Peony Lovers of 1996, award "For Landscape Merit" in 2009. The flowers are semi-double, up to 20 cm in diameter, very fragrant, golden yellow with small scarlet spots at the base of the petals. Flowering is plentiful and long.
ITO-peony of medium flowering period. The flowers are semi-double, large, with a diameter of up to 20 cm, with a light aroma, silky, with a color changing as the flower blooms from cherry red to orange-pink and even peach-yellow. The height of the bush is 60-70 cm. Flowering is plentiful and long.
ITO-peony of a medium late flowering period. Terry flowers, medium size, with a diameter of up to 17 cm, with a pleasant aroma, bright yellow with light red flashes at the base of the petals. The height of the bush is 50-60 cm. Flowering is plentiful and long.
ITO-peony of medium flowering, winner of the American Peony Lovers Prize "For Landscape Merit" in 2010. The flowers are semi-double, large, up to 20 cm in diameter, fragrant, yellow-beige when blooming, later pale yellow. The height of the bush is 70-80 cm. Flowering is plentiful and long.
ITO-peony of medium flowering period. Terry flowers, large, up to 20 cm in diameter, with a light aroma, are distinguished by an exquisite combination of red, yellow and orange, which gives the flower a characteristic copper hue. The flowers are semi-double, large, up to 20 cm in diameter, with a light aroma, light yellow with red-violet stripes along the entire length of the petals. Flowering is long and very plentiful due to the formation of a large number of side buds.
ITO-peony of medium flowering, winner of the American Peony Lovers Prize "For Landscape Merit" 2009. Semi-double flowers, medium size, diameter up to 17 cm, bright creamy pink color. The tips of the petals gradually brighten, and their bases retain saturated reddish hues, thereby creating the effect of an internal glow. Flowering is plentiful and long.