Bare Root Roses
The easiest way to start with roses is planting
bare root roses, but what exactly does that mean?
When it comes to buying roses, your
local garden shop or online nurseries will offer the plants in many ways.
It may be tempting to take that
wonderful blooming flowerpot back home, but if you really want to do so, it is
good advice to inspect the plants well, before buying them.
Anyway, I prefer to buy bare root
roses. The main reasons are:
can easily be packed, mailed and send with a parcel service
come from reputable rose nurseries
are easy to handle and to plant
When you buy bare root roses, they are
completely naked from the top to the roots, without soil or mulching material
Bare Root Roses Step By Step
As the tender plants are delivered in
a mailbox with some protecting material wrapped around or in a plastic bag, you
have to unpack them as soon as possible.
- Prune the canes down to 4-6 inches; the
roots do not work until now and will shrivel (Be sure the roses are not prepruned
by the nursery or a garden shop.) Cut the roots for maximum ½ inch, to keep as many fibers of the roots as
- Soak the plants for the next 12-24 hours
in a bucket of water from the top of the canes to the roots. That step applies
especially to planting roses in spring.
- Prepare a plant-hole about 2 feet wide and 2
feet deep. Use the soil of the plant-hole for refilling and whether the soil is
not that good, work in some organic soil
amendment. Be careful, and do not use any fertilizer in the plant-hole. That
will cause root-damage. Mound the soil in a small moat around the rose and the
water will go directly to the base.
- The graft union should be positioned
correctly. For areas with cold winters (zone 5 or colder) that is 2 inches
below the soil level and for warmer regions 1 inch above the soil level. Press
on the soil properly with your shoes and water the plants thoroughly, so the
soil surrounds the roots completely.
- Watering should be continued until
the plant thrives about 4 inches
- Mounding soil over the roses is a crucial task and should not be skipped. Mounding
protects the tender plants from wind, sun and frost. Only the tips of the canes
should poke 1-1.5 inches out of the soil. If you plant in spring, remove the
soil after 4-8 weeks, when the new shoots are about 3-4 inches in length.
A Word To Planting Schedule For Bare Root Roses
planting time in the USA is mostly in spring, because the big nurseries are
targeted to deliver new plants at that time, I am a supporter of fall planting.
The roses are
able to develop in the still warm soil and start growing as soon as the frost
period is over. Early blooming will be the reward.
climates, I would prefer planting bare root roses in late spring, to avoid
frost damage. However, ask the local gardeners there, they will happily help
you with that problem.
Planting Bare Root Roses