Growing Roses - Step by Step to a Rose Paradise
Climbers, Ramblers or Miniatures, Bare Roots or Containers, Shrubs or Groundcovers and what is a Florib..unda?
Overwhelmed by so many rose varieties available? Don't worry, and follow one rule: “Keep it simple!”
If you seriously want to start with rose gardening, take your time and visit neighbors with rose gardens; what do they grow? Go to garden centers, browse catalogs and the Web.
Contact the American Rose Society, to find a local Rose society in your area. They will help you with your questions.
In case you already know which variety you want to grow, visit my favorite online-nursery to buy rose plants.
For newbies, I recommend to browse through my website, to get an idea where to start with growing roses.
Choosing roses, the hours of hitting catalogs, internalizing all the information, the idea how your garden will turn in to a rose paradise…it is really fun.
No matter what your final choice will be:
Buying roses is much easier if you stick to your own guidelines from the beginning. Think about what you want and what conditions roses need to grow effortlessly.
Would a Climber be perfect for your pergola, a Miniature Rose for that cool terracotta pot, or do you need a colorful privacy shield?
I always walk through the garden, armed with a drawing pad and jot down what I would like to have and where I want it.
Based on my notes, which includes favored color, maximum plant height, number of plants and the type of rose, I can draw up a preselection.
Roses are sold either container grown or as bare-root plants.
Nowadays, many flower vendors, such as garden centers or home improvement centers are not prepared to sell bare root roses, they offer container plants and bagged roses instead.
Potted roses are a good choice, as long as they have good quality.
By the way, I would not buy bagged roses, they are sprayed with paraffin and are mostly poor performers.
Particular quality criteria do apply to all rose varieties, but always do expect first-quality goods for your money. Only healthy and fully matured plants will grow properly and lead to rose gardening success.
Watch out for a good root penetration of container roses:
The plant's bales must not crumble to pieces while extracting them from the plastic pots. The minimum volume size of containers should be 2 liters; quality goods come with 3 liters.
Quality roses can be rated by the condition of their bark.
Proper goods provide smooth, solid unbruised stems.
The canes should come in light-green color.
Wizened bark could be an indication for a dry-damage. Spots on the bark may show frost damage.
Grafted roses can be bought in various quality categories, I will call them A and B:
Quality Class A will come with highly branched roots and a minimum of three strong canes and a well-developed root system
Quality Class B with a minimum of two canes
Nevertheless, B-roses are not of poor quality; they simply need more time to grow.