Anyone can have beautiful, healthy roses by following a few basic care steps. Roses are not carefree plants, but by following a few simple rules you can have lush, healthy roses.
STEP 1 / FERTILIZE
Fertilizing is really so simple but does so much:
- roses will reach their full size
roses will produce more flowers
plants will stay healthy
plants will resist attacks from disease and pests
fertilize new plants about 4 weeks after planting
Feed older roses in spring when new growth is 6inches in length.
Species roses, old roses and climbers need fertilizing in early spring as buds prepare to open. They will benefit from a second feeding after the first bloom.
In cold areas (zone 6 down) stop feeding 6 weeks before average frost date. This is not the time to encourage new, tender growth.
STEP 2 / WATER
- From early spring to fall water 1 to 2 inches per week at one time.
Increase your watering to every 4-5 days in very hot and dry conditions.
Soak soil to 16 inches in depth.
STEP 3 / WEED
- Weed when weeds are small, this is so much easier plus they won’t have a chance to go to seed.
Mulch your roses to reduce weeds and retain moisture.
Do not mulch more than 2-4 inches deep.
Do not mound mulch around the base of your roses during growing season. This encourages disease and pests.
STEP 4 / CLEAN
- Roses love care and attention.
Keeping roses clean helps them to resist disease and insects.
After blooming remove spent flowers (deadhead) so plant will concentrate on making more blooms instead of seed.
Removing spent flowers also produces the second set of blooms faster and plants have stronger stems.
Cut blooms back to the closest 5 leaflets where the stem is thicker (about thickness of a pencil).
Remove twiggy growth to improve air circulation and prevent fungal disease.
Cut all weak growth back to the main stem.
Remove dead litter and leaves from the beds.
STEP 5 / PROTECT FROM PESTS & DISEASE
- Use organic methods and products.
Select healthy strong varieties for your area.
Ensure at least 6 hours of sun daily, more is better.
Do not over crowd when planting.
Be observant while tending your roses to catch problems early before they get carried away.
STEP 6 / PROTECT IN WINTER
- Select only hardy roses to your area.
Use more protection in colder climates.
Use a rose cone to mound dirt or mulch around base, remove in spring and work back into the soil.
Climbers can be untied from support, tied together and wrapped in burlap.
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