April Rose Growing Notes

by Marty Reich, Master Rosarian, Editor of the Rose Leaf

So you have pruned your roses and cleaned up the beds some time around now. It is still too early to pull the mulch very far away. We could have a freeze until the middle of April and did last year. If you spray, you have done that as well, soaking the mulch as well as the almost bare bushes. It is so much better to get ahead of blackspot and spray routinely than to let it get ahead of you.
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March Rose Growing Notes

by Marty Reich, Master Rosarian, Editor of the Rose Leaf

Pruning is on all rosarian minds right now. Should I or shouldn’t I, that is the question? These mild winters are confusing to both roses and rosarians. We used to say prune when the forsythia blooms, but there are newer varieties of forsythia which bloom perhaps too early. In the last Rose Leaf I talked about pruning Austins and climbers in February. I just pruned some shrubs as well. Last year I pruned my HTs and Fls March 16-18, did some touch-up pruning April 28 and the garden was in full bloom (climbers and all) May 14. That is a general plan for me again this year.

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February Rose Growing Notes

by Marty Reich, Master Rosarian, Editor of the Rose Leaf

Unpruned climber on trellis
Unpruned climber on trellis
Something you will want to do in February is to prune your David Austin roses. Dr. Rankin, who was a member for many years and grew a huge number of them, gave this advice: Prune and feed them in mid-February. Since I started doing this, it has seemed to make a difference from the years I waited until late March.

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Mentors Matter

by Ron Daniels, President – Nashville Rose Society, Master Rosarian, Master Gardner

 

As I look back on my experiences with growing roses for the last 28 years, I remember who introduced me to the love of roses and was kind enough to mentor me. This fine gentleman was John Curtis, or as NRS members referred to him, “The Rose Farmer”. He earned that name because of his commitment to organic methods of growing roses.
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Winterization of Roses

By Marty Reich, Master Rosarian

 
It is time to put the kids to bed. The last big rose chore before we get to put our feet up and enjoy the rose catalogs needs to be done by about the first week of December. A general rule is to wait until there have been two real (not just a couple of hours) freezes below 28degrees F. Protect too soon and the bush will not have time to gear up its internal winterization mechanism. This involves making its own kind of “antifreeze” and will not be discussed here.
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