Rose Garden Maintenance
“What’s in a name?
That which we call a rose,
By any other name would smell as sweet”
The classic beauty of the garden is the Rose. There are so many breeds, so many colors, and so much variety yet… needs either a lot of maintenance to retain its beauty or nothing at all. There are more than 40,000 roses on the International Rose Register (Botanica’s Roses Grant, William 2000)
The only hardy rose I’ve come across is the Rosa rugosa or the Beach Rose. I mean this plant can take anything, wind, salt, no soil and still bloom perfectly and smell as sweet. Also its fruit called Hips are high in Vitamin C.
David Austin Roses
David Austin roses are a trademark rose that lends to its quality of breeding and long horticultural standing for 60 years. These are the roses with names associated with monarchy, celebrities, and famous characters from literature.
The romance of the climbing Rose growing up the trellis on a house and/or archway. Their blooms sweet and forgiving, brightening up the harsh straight lines of buildings and entryways.
Shrub Roses are in two categories: Old Garden Roses (ie Heirloom Roses) and New Garden Roses. Old Garden Roses are any roses that existed before 1867. It was at this time, the first hybrid Tea Rose was discovered in a garden and everything after 1867 is considered a New Garden Rose. New Garden Roses are Tea Rose varieties, Knockout Series, Oso Easy series, David Austen Roses, etc.
Knockout Roses and Oso Easy Roses are consistent bloomers if dead headed regularly. Dead heading Roses go by the rules of pruning down to a leaf of 5-6 leaflets.
Roses are a great bloomer for the garden. Care for them seasonally by pruning any dead and cutting back down to a foot to 2 feet from crown in the fall. Fertilize with Rose specific fertilizer. Mound Roses with mulch or straw around the crown to insulate from the cold Northeastern winters. In the spring around April remove mound, fertilize and prune any winter kill off. Roses enjoy dry conditions, so there is no need to water if they are well established. Here in the Northeast, the spring rains and humid summers provide enough water to established (over a year planted) Roses.
Roses do get diseases like Black Mold, Bullet Spot, Powdery Mildew, Canker Crown Rot, and Rust. Planting disease resistant varieties like Knockout Roses and Oso Easy’s help. Most extensions recommend sanitation practices like pruning out infected stems, sanitize your pruners with rubbing alcohol or water down bleach, and raking away infected leaves from the grounds. Good air circulation prevents Black Mold, Rot, and Powdery Mildew.