Sunday, February 26, 2012

Last Day Of The Rose Stroll~

February is almost gone...many new topics are available for the gardener to ponder, write about and share. I've enjoyed our conversations on 'roses' and found it to be a refresher course for my own needs.

If you were not a part of the month long stroll you can find all the post in the blog archives.

Can't let it end without touching on this....roses make lovely container plants.

Be sure to choose a pot big enough for the potential root mass...
Make sure you have drain holes in the bottom...
When planting, add about 2" of peat moss to the bottom of the container and around the walls...peat absorbs many times it's weight in water and keeps the soil mixture from drying out.
Remember too...potted roses need more frequent watering than those in ground.

Terra-cotta pots are pretty, as are wood containers...but, plastic serves you best for roses. The plant and soil will stay cooler, need less water, and will be easier to move from one location to another if needed.

Miniatures are beautiful in containers. They are comfortable in a 5 to 7 gallon pots, whereas hybrid teas will need 20 to 25 gallon containers.

Which-ever way you decide to grow a rose, or many ...enjoy and share~

Now...on to the spring collection of garden subjects....any suggestions ?

Bea Kunz

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Basket Or Hanging Roses~

If you don't have a lot of yard space and want roses in your mix of flowers...consider a basket/hanging rose.

The easiest and most beautiful one I have experience with is " Red Cascade."

It' the first climber adapted for hanging baskets.
The cascades will reach several feet over the edge of the container.

The deep red--one inch flowers have a light fragrance & small leathery leaves.

It needs full sun all day and good circulation.

Canes can droop to the ground with flowers all the way down the stem.

Bloom repeat is fast...

Good in zones 5-11.

I think I'll plant one or two of these this year.

Your thoughts ?

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Spice Up Your Roses~

Roses are herbs too...and , if you do this little extra thing, you will have less, if any, Black spot fungus. ( plant parsley and garlic around and under your roses ) I do this and it works charmingly~It's called companion planting-another topic, another time.

I enjoy growing roses and other lovely flowers, but I seldom bring them inside, maybe for a dinner party or other special event...maybe because I spend the day with them outside I don't feel the need to have them inside.

If however, you are looking forward to having cut flowers ( roses ) this spring/summer...there are some mighty pretty ones that fill that slot.

A Hybrid tea-Kardinal-( 1986 ) medium red, long stemmed with long lasting support.

The fragrance is light and the foliage is so dark it appears almost black.
Grows 4 to 6 ft tall and repeats well. Good in zones 5-10.
Another Hybrid tea-Elina-( 1984 ) Has white blooms with a creamy center.
Fragrance is light here also.
The bush is vigorous and disease resistant-grows 6-8 ft tall in moderate climates.  Zones 5-10.

These two mixed together makes one beautiful bouquet.
If you just want a massive spread, maybe room for one or two...the Royal Bonica ( this is in our garden ) serves the purpose. Has rich pink blooms with full-15 to 20 petals per bloom-clumping together to form a cluster.

The prolific blooms at the height of the spring will cover the foliage.
You should give this bush about 6 feet to spread and have room to flourish.
Grows great in zones 5-10. It's a shrub from 1994. Fragrance is slight, stronger if the weather is cool.

Have a marvelous weekend  and think 'spring,' and roses ~


We now have an ebay store for vintage lovers~

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Roses And Pruning~

In general roses should be pruned just before the plant breaks dormancy after springs final frost.

This will be early in the year in warm climates, and anytime between February and April in cold climates.

If you are growing old roses, prune them after they have finished blooming, they bear flowers on last years wood.

Remove any weak, twiggy canes that cross one another and rub in the wind.

Hybrid Teas and Grandifloras in mild climates are usually 4 to 10 feet tall and looking rather shaggy-prune off 1/3 to 1/2 of the height-in general leave 4 or 5 major canes and at least 3 feet tall. ( Remove the older canes for certain-this will trigger the rose to attempt basal breaks ( new cane growth )in spring and is fundamental to the health of the bush.

Climbers and ramblers will not flower profusely unless the canes are trained on a horizontal plane. Cut the long-established canes to the place where they are slightly thicker than a pencil-then cut each side stem that has flowered to the lowest possible 5-leaflet stem-about 1 to 2 inches from the main cane. This will cause the cane to flower along its complete length. not put any pruning remains into your compost heap.

Happy Valentines Day everyone !


Thursday, February 09, 2012

Roses-Secret Of Success~

Unless one is a pro with roses it isn't uncommon to make a rose bed of many different kinds and then treat them all the same. This is a big mistake...roses are each individual in needs, issues, and output.

It is just as uncommon to find one particular rose with many different issues.
They each seem to have one or two weaknesses that can and often do come calling .

For example...Grandifloria's are prone to Aphid infestation--look for tiny, green, brown, or white, soft bodied insects-usually on the backs of the leaves.

Sometimes a good spraying with the water hose will destroy these critters and if not, wash gently with a safe insecticidal soap spray...continue this spraying until they are gone.

( another, more natural way to eliminate Aphids is to make sure you have Ladybugs in your garden...they dine constantly on Aphids, and can consume thousands in a just a few hours.) Ladybugs are totally harmless to garden plants...a good bug in every way.

Floribunda's seem to be a target for Botrytis blight...a fungal disease that appears  as a gray growth on buds. Flowers that are affected will fall apart, rather than open normally.

Pick off and destroy affected blooms and spray with a fungicide in severe cases.
( A good strong compost tea will also control this blight if started early and repeated long enough.)

Hybrid Tea's are prone to rust and Japanese beetle attacks.
Rust will appear as small brown powdery spots that spread across the leaves. They will eventually turn yellow and fall off. Remove infected leaves and destroy...never drop any infected leaves on the ground under your rose bushes, this will allow the disease to infect the soil and back into the plant. I find a mixture of 1 part white vinegar and 4 parts water will get rid of rust.

Japanese beetles are tricky...they don't succumb to any known combative...a good hard spraying with the water hose will drive them away, kill some, and if done often enough will discourage them from hanging around.

Don't use the bags on the market that draws them in and traps them...they love the mixture in the bags and will come from far away to dine on it-so you are just inviting more than you might have otherwise.

You can easily hand pick or knock them off, into a can of oil early in the morning or late in the day...they are sluggish at these times....they can't get out of the oil and will die.

Do not put these in your compost...they stink and the oil will contaminate your mix.

A good point to always practice...good, clean, chemical free soil is the best guard against any disease in any garden. Bad insects, funguses etc., don't like or hang out in good soil. It is the one most important step to having a garden free of problems.

Have a Rosy weekend everyone~

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

A Rugged Beauty-Rugosa Rose-( Pavement Rose )

Pavement rose at the end of the blooming season.
Hips on the Pavement rose.

Since we have touched on this rose in another forum-here's the rest of the story.

The Pavement rose is really a 'Rugosa'...whether seedlings, named varieties, or hybrids, all have a strong but delicate fragrance.

Rugosa's usually have the look of wild roses, with single petals that can be pinkish, purplish or white. They can be semi double or double in the bloom.

The flowers are followed by fruits, called hips, that can be an inch or more across. The hips make delicious jams, tangy tea, and are rich in vitamin C.

Rugosa's are covered in small spines and the  leaves are dark and leathery.

You can count on blooms all summer, in fact mine starts blooming in the spring and is the last of the roses to fade away in the fall.

They must be kept pruned if you don't wish to allow it to fill out its full potential...keep it pruned to 3 feet or let it grow to 6. The spread can be 4 to 6 feet also. ( this you can also control with pruning )

These beautiful roses are also disease resistant-a good thing !
They will flourish in zones 2-8 with full sun and well drained soil.

When you buy a Rugosa in the pot...make sure it is no more than twice as high as the container. Examine it well for any negatives -dark spots, leaves with holes or brown will either look really healthy or it will look in-between.

Each year( late winter )after all danger of freezing is past- cut the oldest stems down to the ground to make room for the new ones. Shorten any very long stems also.

In the spring, once established,  it is wise to add some granular rose fertilizer-just once. Never ever over feed them.

Late summer, if you plan to use the hips-harvest them just after the leaves lose their dark green color.  Dry them well and process accordingly to the purpose . You can eat them fresh if you like...allow them stay on the shrub until they turn bright orange...remember they are loaded in vitamin C.

If you only have space for one rose...I would make it a Pavement-Rugosa Rose.

Your thoughts ?