Peony with dead bulbs

Asked May 12, 2019, 12:10 PM EDT

I have had this problem two years in a row. Beautiful buds have a hole in the middle and die. They are in an appropriate place I believe as I have many buds. This year I dusted them, including the buds with a multipurpose dust. They are sticky which I read they are supposed to be. I do not see ants on them. Another site said they have blight. I’m just not sure what is happening. Also I have two more peonies in the yard with more shade. One is blooming but last year they developed the same problem after a few flowers.

Jackson County Oregon

1 Response

Thank you for your question. Although a positive diagnosis would be possible only with an examination, I suspect your peony has botrytis, a fungal infection described here:

Note that the recommendation is to reduce water on them, since that is important to fungi to grow. Also note that the only chemical available to homeowners is Monterey Liqui-Cop, which should be used strictly in accordance with label directions.

But, before you apply anything, you might want to take some dead/dying buds and visit your county Extension office, whose website is here:

Good luck!