How to Grow & Care for Roses
Roses need an open sunny location, with shelter from strong winds. Before planting, always soak your plant’s root ball in a bucket of water for ten minutes, this allows for sufficient water soak right into the plants roots
When preparing the planting hole remember to allow at least one foot spacing around the plant’s root ball. Dig the hole approx 2 ft wide and 1 ft deep. Using a garden fork loosen the soil in the bottom of the planting hole to allow for better drainage and ease of root growth.
Planting time is the only time that much needed organic matter can be added into the soil. We recommend a bucket of well rotted (at least 6 months old) farm yard manure. Fork the manure into the bottom of the planting hole and mix through the soil.
To plant; carefully remove rose plant from its container and position in the hole. First assess the plants best side or ‘face’ and have this side pointing out. When positioning, assure that the root balls soil level is level with the existing ground level.
Refill planting hole and firm in soil using foot. Finally use a garden rake to level the soil around the plant.
Feeding plants replaces much needed nutrients that have been consumed by the plant over years of growth and flowering. Roses are particularly hungry plants as they flower profusely from early summer until autumn. There is a range of feed available, but the important ingredient for roses is potassium (the last number in feeds such as 10-10-20). Potassium is needed for flower growth and development.
Begin feeding your roses in late spring and continue to feed every two weeks throughout the summer. Cease feeding in autumn. Always read the instructions provided with the feed.
Alternatively continue to mulch your roses with well rotted farm yard manure during the summer months. Mulch provides nutrients, reduces weeds and conserves moisture
Water before planting and directly after planting. For the first year, keep a close eye on your plants and the weather. Other than that they and our wet summers should take care of themselves, however in the case of drought water each plant with 2 watering cans of water.
Something that makes roses stand out from other garden plants is their susceptibility to disease and pest. There are a number of diseases that often attack including black spot, powdery mildew and rust. To prevent these from effecting your plants and also to control against aphids we recommend spraying your plants every 2 weeks during the growing season, starting in mid April, with rose clear.
However a more organic option would be to stay vigilant, remove infected sections early, rake up old leaves and if possible choose disease resistant varieties. To control greenfly simply spray your roses with soapy water and watch them fall off.
Of course pruning roses is another important task in maintaining your roses. We have a seperate tutorial on this process and this can be found under the growing shrubs section