Tips & Growing Instructions: Roses
A new rose bush will provide stunning color, fragrance and texture in just about any garden setting. And unlike roses of old, today’s modern roses require surprisingly little care. By following just a few basic tips, your rose will thrive beautify for years. When receiving your rose from Breck’s remove roses from container and soak the roots in a pail of water for at least an hour (no more than 12 hours) just before planting. Select a sunny (at least 6 hours of sun) location and well drained soil. Roses do not like “wet feet.”
Foundation planting - Although your roses can be planted at any time, best results are achieved when they are planted on a cloudy, calm day. Dig a hole 12–18"deep and wide enough so all of the roots can be spread out without touching the sides of the hole. Mix the soil from the hole with a good measure of leaf mold, peat moss, manure or compost. Mound a cone of soil in the centre of the hole. Trim off any broken roots, then spread healthy roots around soil mound with bud union (the knot at the base of the plant) at ground level for mild climates, 2–3" below ground level for cold climates. Fill hole half full with soil mixture, and water well to settle soil and eliminate air pockets. Let water drain—this is a good way to be sure your rose will have adequate drainage. Fill remainder of hole with soil mixture. Water thoroughly again. Then, mound loose soil up and around canes to protect the plant from sudden temperature changes. Gently wash away soil to ground level when rose is well-sprouted.
Continuing Care - Watering— Roses require the equivalent of 1" of rainfall each week. They will bloom best if their roots are kept moist but not waterlogged. Water thoroughly—a slow, deep soak at the ground is most efficient. Don’t water from above—avoid getting foliage wet, as this can encourage disease problems. Deadheading, the process of removing faded blooms from your rose plants, is the best way to keep hybrid tea, grandiflora and floribunda roses blooming all season. When you deadhead, cut back below the first five-leaflet stem to promote strong return growth. Removing any dead flowers prevents the formation of hips, so plants can direct their energy to developing new blooms and foliage. Most shrub roses we offer are self-cleaning. The petals drop on their own as they mature, and new blooms come behind them.
In the Winter— After the first killing frost of fall, make a mound of loose soil at least 8" high over the base of the plant in zones 5 and below. Then cover the mound and remaining exposed canes with hay, straw, grass clippings, oak leaves or similar material.
In the Spring— Modern roses should be pruned early in the spring, when about half of the growth buds swell. First remove any dead or damaged canes. Next you should cut back about one-third to one-half of the previous year’s growth. Then remove any crossing canes. Finally, you will want to remove any suckers.