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Sugar Ants Beneficial for Peony Blossoms

Here is my peony covered with sugar ants feasting. Although I don't like these guys crawling around my kitchen, their symbiotic relationship with peonies is well known. The peonies secrete a sweet nectar which you can see it in the picture. The little ants collect all the nectar, allowing the blossom to open easily.
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If you cut the blossoms just before they open, you can wash or shake off the ants and allow it to bloom inside. This will prevent you from introducing the little pests to your home and allow you to enjoy every minute of these showy flowers. The buds should be soft and just starting to show color.

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April 22, 20160 found this helpful

Wow I always wondered why there were so many ants on them. Thanks for the information.

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April 26, 20160 found this helpful

Say, Jess, what is the deal with peonies and Mother's Day where you are? Where I am, it has been a long standing tradition to hope for peonies to be in bloom on Mother's Day. We do often get what we hoped for.

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April 27, 20160 found this helpful

I never really thought about a connection between the two but they are always in bloom right about that time. There is a tulip/peony farm close to my neighborhood and they sell their cut peonies right about Mother's Day. :)

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May 1, 20180 found this helpful

I had no idea you could force peony flowers indoors. Thanks, Jess.

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May 2, 20180 found this helpful

The farm near my house doesn't force them, they are out in the field. It must be just lucky timing. I'll have to send in another picture of my peony now. It's bigger and better than ever.

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May 4, 20180 found this helpful

Poor choice of words as forcing flowers to bloom indoors (such as paperwhites) is more involved. I should have said 'I had no idea a closed peony bloom (soft and just starting to show color) would open when cut, washed, brought indoors, and vased.

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Thanks, again

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