The Rose Grower’s Year

The Rose Grower’s Year

This monthly calendar of tasks should be used only as a reminder and for general guidance. Rigid timetables cannot be set out because the climate varies considerably in different parts of the country and from one year to the next, so rosarians should adapt suggestions to suit their own local conditions.

The Rose Grower's Year


The hours of daylight are short and inclement weather is likely to disorganize your plans, but planting of roses can continue when soil and weather conditions permit. Treading of heavy soil should be avoided if it is very wet. Shrub roses may be pruned if hard frosts are not prevalent. Roses grown under glass should be given enough heat to keep out frost, but allowed some ventilation by day.


Floribunda roses may now be pruned, particularly in southern and sheltered gardens. In areas where black spot or mildew cause problems, spray roses with a copper fungicide such as Bordeaux Mixture. Stocks budded last year can now be headed back. Canes should be inserted to indicate their position; these will also provide support for young growth in due course. Roses under glass will benefit from a spray of clear water early in the day when the weather is fair.


Always a busy month if the weather is good. In all but northern and exposed gardens, pruning should be completed by the end of the month; burn all pruned material. Late planting should also be finished. Stocks should be planted now if budding is planned. All beds where roses are grown on their own should be thoroughly weeded; if you have no time for weeding, water the beds with a weedkiller based on simazine. Roses under glass should be sprayed for protection against greenfly. Encourage their growth by applying a liquid fertilizer once a week and raising the greenhouse temperature.


All pruning should have been completed. Apply rose fertilizer to your outdoor plants. Check the standards to see that their ties and supports are secure. Exhibitors should check on pruning cuts and rub out surplus growths; if only the lower eyes have started to develop, remove the wood above them. Fumigate the greenhouse as an additional protection against greenfly. Damp down the pathways and the benching between pots on hot days. Provide shade if necessary for any early blooms.


Those who grow shrub roses can begin to enjoy them this month. Greenfly generally makes its first attack early in the month and should be controlled-by spraying. A mixture of systemic insecticide and systemic fungicide should take care of other pests and diseases. If you use foliar feeds, you can begin to apply them now, especially to backward plants. Tie back growths from last year’s budding to supporting canes. Pot plants which are finishing flowering can be stood outside, especially if space is short in the greenhouse. Now is the time to mulch rose beds with garden compost or farmyard manure while the soil is still moist.


In southern gardens, roses should be coming into flower. If large blooms are required, particularly for exhibition, disbudding of small or surplus buds will be necessary. Exhibitors must now study their schedules, get their equipment ready, and notify the show committees if they intend to participate. In some areas watering, particularly of late-planted roses, may now be necessary. All pot roses can now be stood outside.


In general, throughout the country, this is the best month to enjoy roses. Rose shows should also be visited, as well as specialist rose Nurseries, particularly those in your own area. Dead-heading should begin, cutting back to the first or second eye below. Another application of rose fertilizer will be beneficial. Spray again if necessary with insecticide and fungicide. Bud your stocks if they are ready.


Another good month for seeing roses everywhere, and a great time for shows, local and national. The trial gardens will have especially fine displays of autumn floribundas. New varieties can be seen at rose nurseries, where they can be selected and ordered.


The month of the autumn shows, that of the RNRS in particular. Climber or rambler roses that have finished flowering should now be pruned, and young growths tied in after the removal of flowering growths. Rose cuttings can be taken and inserted towards the end of the month. In some areas, black spot will require further fungicidal treatment.


This month is really the beginning of the rose-grower’s year. New beds should be prepared, and (if it has not already been done) new roses should be ordered. Nurseries usually start lifting this month, so if you ordered early you may be able to plant before the month is out. Roses in pots should be checked over and repotted if necessary. New varieties can be potted up either from the garden or from a nursery.


This is generally the time to plant out new roses unless early rains make the ground too sticky. Long growths on established roses should be shortened during this month to prevent wind rock. Pot roses can be brought under glass. Many rosarians, especially those in the milder areas of the country, favour pruning now in order to get earlier displays next year. Beginners, however, should be influenced by local conditions and should take advice before making such a decision.


Preparation and planting can be continued this month, heeling in any roses where the soil is very wet. In frosty weather put out straw or bracken to protect very exposed plants. Climbers not dealt with earlier can be pruned now. Roses in pots should be pruned at the end of the month. Fallen rose leaves, particularly those attacked by black spot, should be raked up and burned. If the ground is not too wet it should be prepared now for your spring planting.


11. March 2011 by Dave Pinkney
Categories: Propagating Roses, Pruning Roses, Rose Care, Roses | Tags: | Comments Off on The Rose Grower’s Year


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers: