One of America’s favorite flowers, roses grace gardens with their beauty and heady fragrance all summer long. From June to September, rose bushes bloom with a profusion of colorful flowers from pale pinks to luscious salmons and sunny yellows to deep reds. Roses do require attention but are not the prima donnas of old. Modern rose varieties are hardier and more disease and pest-resistant than the roses your grandmother may have fussed over. Today, gardeners of all experience levels can grow roses successfully.
A Wide Array of Options
The rose family is large, offering variety in form as well as color. Tea roses, rose bushes, climbing roses and miniature roses offer different opportunities for display. Miniature roses are favored in border plantings and display beautifully against a backdrop of taller green shrubbery or as an eye-catching accent plant. For best results, plant roses in fertile, humus-enriched, well-drained soil. Roses will thrive in both full sun and partial shade but require at least 3 to 6 hours of sun daily.
To produce beautiful displays, follow these rose growing tips:
- Plant roses in early spring
- Prune existing roses to 8 to 12 inches
- Fertilize both new and existing plantings in early spring using a slow-release fertilizer formulated for roses. Apply liberally around the base of the plant and water thoroughly
- To prevent the fungal disease black spot, spray plants with fungicide every two weeks
- Deadhead spent flowers to promote new blooms
- Water frequently in dry weather
- In the fall, prune back to 32 inches