A Complete Guide How to Grow Roses

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Have you decided that you want to grow America’s most popular flower? Our guide on how to grow roses will get you started, with all the advice from pruning and general care down to the best soil. We will also advise what are the easiest types of roses to grow we don’t leave out how to deal with dealing with rose pests.

Don’t be put off growing roses, the truth is, roses are no more difficult to look after than any other garden flowers, they are both tough and beautiful and grow in a vast amount of different growing conditions.

Where to Plant Roses in the Garden

Where to plant roses in the garden is a key element of the process of getting your roses to thrive, you will want to select a site that gets a minimum of 5 to 6 hours of full sun per day. Your roses must get morning sun the reason for this is that any water on the leaves will be dried out and this will help prevent diseases.

Roses will not die if they don’t get the full 5 to 6 hours but they will not thrive and will be a weaker plant than one that dose gets the right amount of sun.

If you live in colder climates then we suggest planting close to your home as this will give your roses the protection over the winter, walkways will also give the roots extra protection but you need to bear in mind that the 5 to 6 hours is the most important aspect.

Your roses will thrive if you can find a spot in your garden that has well-draining soil, roses don’t like wet roots or as some gardeners say wet feet.

If you plan to plant more than one variety then give them some room make sure the roses can get plenty of air to avoid podery and downy mildew. 

Preparing the ground for roses

Your roses will more than likely survive in any type of soil but I’m sure that you want your roses to thrive, roses like a pH range of 5.5-7.0 you can test this with a garden pH tester they are not expensive and are a good tool to have for a gardener you can get a Soil Tester Kit here on Amazon.

Digging in organic matter, such as compost or manure will give you will plenty full amounts of flowers, this will give the soil a loose texture which will allow a good drainage system.

Planting Your Roses

When you come to plant the roses you must wear a good pair of gardening gloves to protect your hands from the prickly thorns.

If you are planting bare-root roses soak the roots in water for around 12 hours before planting, if your bare root has buds then prune back so only 3 buds per cane. If there is any cane that is thinner than a pencil should be cut off.

If you have been planting already grown roses in a pot, once you have taken them out of the pot loosen the roots before you put it into the ground.

When digging your hole make it much larger than you think your hole needs to be around 20 inches wide, also add some more compost or manure into the hole.

When you first plant your roses its recommended that you add some canes to give your new roses some extra support whilst your roses bed into their new home, we also recommend giving the roses a drink but don’t overwater.

We recommend that you put mulch around roses this will help conserve water and stop the ground from getting soaked, but try to leave a 4-inch gap around the base of the roses.

The best time to plant roses is in spring after the last frost, if you are planting later in the year around fall you will need to get your new rose plant planted 6 weeks before the first frost of the year this gives the rose’s roots bedded into the soil set for the winter.

Watering Roses

Despite roses liking dry roots, it’s still recommended that you water roses, give the enter root area heavy water at least twice per week during the summer months.

It is best to avoid giving roses a light sprinkle more often as the water will not get down to the deep roots and this could lead to a weak plant that is more subjectable to disease.

When the weather starts to cool in the fall start to reduce the amount that your water, but if the weather is dry don’t allow the roses to try out and keep the watering going.

Roses don’t like to sit in water and have wet roots but do like water this is where a pH tester can be good as they also have a water tester and can be a big help on seeing if the ground need watering if you just can’t tell.

If you don’t get a pH tester then sticking your finger into the soil about 2 inches and if your finger is wet then your roses don’t need watering and give it a couple of more days before you water.

Feeding Roses

Some liquid feed fertilizers give the roses a weak plant growth and this type of plant growth can attract aphids and many other pests, however, we have found that BioAdvanced All-In-One that you can buy on Amazon doesn’t seem to do this and the all-in-one has the added benefit that it protects from pests.

Apply Bio-Advanced All-In-One before the flower bloom and thought out the blooming cycle, once every 6 weeks is ideal applying cycle.

If you enjoy bananas then don’t throw away your banana peel, Cut the peel into small pieces and bury into the soil, this gives the roses a dose of phosphorus that promotes flowering. Around 3 banana peels per week for each plant will be plenty. 

When burying the banana peel be careful not to damage any roots, some people like the blend the skins in a blender you may need to add a little water they feel this gets the phosphorus to the roses faster.

Pruning Roses

Prune roses in early spring, your roses will still be dormant at this stage this pruning is done to reduce the overall size of your roses.

Prune back to an outward-facing bud, in early spring you can be a little more brutal but it’s never recommended that you prune more than one-third of the overall size.

Don’t forget to wear a good pair of gloves and some long sleeves to protect yourself, also we recommend that you use some pruning shears we have a guide on the best pruning shears here if you need some help picking some.

Prune away any diseased branches in the early spring this will not allow it to spread during the summer months.

Summer is when only light pruning takes place big thick branches can be chopped back but keep this to a minimum, it’s also worth saying don’t move roses in the summer months they are more than likely to die in the heat.

Deadheading your roses religiously will encourage extra blooming, as every leaf has a growth bud so removing the old deadheads will encourage the growth buds to develop more flowers. We also recommend that you clean around the rose bush any dropped leaves or dead flowers this is where the disease will harbor and bugs will harbor that can get onto your roses.

Later in the season row back on the pruning to let the plant create hips, completely stop deadheading your rose bushes 4 weeks before the first hard frost. This will stop any new growth and we don’t want this as any frost will kill the new growth.

How to Winterize Roses

Do as little pruning as possible in fall I would even say don’t prune at all, but do cut off any dead or diseased branches.

 As we mentioned above keep your borders clean and free from any dropped foliage this will prevent any diseases over winter.

It’s worth giving your roses a spray of dormant spray if you’re looking for a recommendation then we suggest All Seasons Dormant Spray from Amazon it will protect from fungus and insects.

If you are applying fertilizer then stop applying this 6 weeks before the first frost of the season, but don’t stop watering if we are having a dry spell.

Once we have the first frost I recommend covering around the base with mulch to give the roots extra protection over winter but don’t apply if the ground is frozen this will lock the cold in.

Show off your Roses

Seeing the roses in full bloom is lovely there fragrant is renowned around the world, so why only have these great things in your garden having fresh cut roses in your house is a rose growers pleasure here are some tips for making your cut roses last.

  • Fresh cut roses will last the longest when you cut them at their bud stage.
  • Use sharp pruning shears to cut the roses, so you don’t damage the water intake on the stem.
  • Recut the stem when just before putting them into a vase to get rid of any air bubbles in the stem that would stop the rose from getting water.
  • Remove all leaves that are below the water line to stop bacterial growth from rotting leaves that would be in the water.
  • Change the water daily this will remove any bacteria in the water.

Recommend Roses

Rugosas – This is a hardy disease-resistant rose that is also cold hardy it comes in a variety of different colors bright pink, white and lavender they are also a very fragrant flower.  

Princesse Charlene de Monaco – These have a 100+ petal blooms per flower with a pink color, it’s very fragrant and is also an excellent disease resistance.  Zone 5-9

Olympiad Rose Plant – is a bright red bloomer with a sweet smell and will survive in Zone 5-9. This is a rose that you typically think of when you think of roses.

The choice is endless with most roses now being disease resistance, the best thing is now that we are not limited to only being able to plant roses that are in the local garden center or taking a cutting from friends but now you can buy nearly any type of rose from Amazon that is ready to plant the 3 above are all available from Amazon here.

We have also put together Easy Guide How to grow roses from a cutting here witch is great when you start sharing cutting with your gardening friends and its an easy process.  

We hope this post helps you if or when you take up growing your roses, if you need any help please post below and we will do our best to help you out.