DESCRIPTION: The Rose is the most popular garden flower. Highly valued for its form, fragrance and endless variety of color. Tremendous progress has been made in raising new varieties by crossbreeding and selection. New types have arisen; the season of blooming has been prolonged to such an extent that many modern varieties (including climbers) bloom intermittently or in some instances continuously throughout the summer and autumn months. Only a severe frost puts an end to their blooming season. The species of wild Roses are classed under Rosa and a few hybrids that resemble wild kinds, but for garden purposes, the remaining types are grouped in various ways: according to their habits of growth (ie., Shrub Roses, Trailers, Climbers); according to their ancestry (ie., Teas, Hybrid Teas, Hybrid Sweetbriers); according to the manner in which they are grafted, budded or trained (ie., Bushes, Standards or Trees); and in a number of other ways. These groups are not always clear. They often overlap, but are generally convenient and practicable. It's important that the person interested in Roses be familiar with the different types of Roses even though he may not be able, at sight, to place any given Rose in a specific category.
Following are descriptions of the Rose classes:
Hybrid Teas - These are the favorite types of Rose, though Floribundas are becoming increasingly popular. The fascination of the Hybrid Teas rests in the quality of each bloom, the large amount of fragrant varieties and the wide range of color, which is absent from other classes of Roses, including Pernetiana Roses, which are now merged into the Hybrid Teas and can no longer be regarded as a separate group. The Hybrid Teas carry their blooms singly for the most part.
Cary Grant Hybrd Tea. 1987
Hybrid Perpetuals - These were the forerunners of the Hybrid Teas. This class is grown less than it used to be. It has been replaced largely by the Hybrid Teas and more recently by Floribundas. However, Hybrid Perpetuals have the advantage of being hardier than most Hybrid Teas and Floribundas and they'll withstand harsh winters with little or no protection. They are also fairly resistant to disease and they grow vigorously. Hybrid Perpetual Roses resulted from hybridizing R. centifolia, R. chinensis, R. damascena and R. gallica. The first varieties are said to have originated in France in 1837. The flowers, which are produced on erect-growing bushes, are large, (but sometimes unshapely by Hybrid Tea standards), heavy looking and flat-topped. They lack the high, pointed centers that give added grace to most Hybrid Teas. The colors are mostly pink, white and crimson-red, which often acquires an unattractive bluish tinge as the bloom fades. The flower stems are short, but they have a gorgeous fragrance that is characteristic of almost all Hybrid Perpetual Roses. The flowers usually bloom in profusion in June, but some flower irregularly throughout the summer and they usually provide a second, but less extravagant, show in the autumn. They are sometimes known as June Roses. Hybrid Perpetuals lack the refined form and clarity of color of the Hybrid Teas and Floribundas, but are great plants for those who want Roses with a minimum of trouble.
Tea Roses - These are characterized by spreading growth and lightly scented flowers of pale coloring. They are produced abundantly throughout the summer and into the fall. In the South and California, many varieties will grow at least 5 ft. high. The Tea Rose is descended from Rosa odorata, a Chinese Rose that was introduced early in the nineteenth century. Numerous varieties have been raised throughout several generations of crossbreeding and selection. Few are in cultivation now because they've been replaced by the Hybrid Teas, which are hardier and better suited to planting in the open garden. They also bear flowers of richer and more varied coloring. The Tea Roses are, however, becoming more popular in areas with mild climates, the South and the West Coast. There they grow much more actively and bloom longer. They aren't subject to the black-spot disease.Souvenir Dela Arib Bean 1994
Floribunda Roses - These are also known as Hybrid Polyanthas. They were originally crosses between Dwarf Polyanthas and Hybrid Teas, but the parentage is now somewhat wider, therefore they were renamed Floribundas. The plants are as tall as the average Hybrid Tea, but the height varies greatly among the varieties and some recent introductions are even taller. The bear single, semi-double, or fully double blooms, larger than those of the Dwarf Polyanthas and occasionally of Hybrid Tea quality, though a bit smaller. Floribunda Roses are especially suited to the average garden because of their hardiness, resistance to disease and ability to supply more color all season long than the Hybrid Teas. This class of Rose is very effective when planted in solid beds of one color, but home gardeners have found that its use can be extended to foundation plantings, shrub borders, flower borders, low hedges and large tubs and planter boxes.
Grandiflora - A name now given to hybrids of Floribunda and Hybrid Tea Roses in which the blooms approach the Hybrid Tea in size and form. They are produced in clusters on the long, main stems, but the clusters have fewer flowers than is usual in the Floribundas. These plants tend to grow tall and upright. They match the Floribundas in hardiness, disease resistance, ever-blooming habit and fine form of the buds and blooms.
Polyanthas - These are sometimes known as Baby Ramblers. Each flower is small, but they are produced in clusters of great quantities. They are low, shrubby plants that bloom over a long season. Some varieties are likely to revert to the parent unless care is taken to remove shoots bearing off-color flowers. Polyanthas are last very long as cut flowers, but have declined in popularity since the advent of Floribundas or Hybrid Polyanthas, which have larger blooms, produced with even greater freedom on taller plants.
Hybrid Sweetbriers - These are strong growing Roses that make handsome flowering shrubs and are also great for tall hedges, as long as care is taken to ward off black-spot disease to which they are vulnerable. The height ranges from 6-8 feet and sometimes higher. The foliage has the typical Sweetbrier aroma.
Miniature Roses - These are interesting small Roses, which form a compact bush 6 to 18 inches high. They produce an abundance of perfectly formed, tiny blooms. They are wonderful plants for the rock garden or window boxes and they also make lovely pot plants.
China Roses - The only varieties of this Rose grown is the pink Monthly or common China Rose, Rosa chinensis semperflorens. In mild climates, it blooms almost throughout the year. It forms an attractive low hedge. The flowers have comparatively few petals and the color is a pretty shade of rose pink.
Vincent . Godsiff "China" Bermuda Mystery
Moss Rose - These are lovely tall shrubby Roses. They are so attractive that a spot should be found for at least a few of them. They are called Moss Roses because the flower stems and the calyces are clothed with a growth resembling moss that is actually glandular hairs. They only bloom in early summer.
Hybrid Musks - This group of Roses grows actively and blooms profusely throughout the summer and fall. Since the Reverend J. H. Pemberton of England originated many varieties, they are sometimes catalogued as Pemberton Pillar and Pemberton Shrub Roses. Hybrid Musks are said to have been raised by crossbreeding the Musk Rose, Rosa moschata, and various modern Roses. Some of the most zealous ones form large bushes 5 feet or more high and bear tons of small flowers which make up for lack of size by their abundance. Tall kinds may be grown as Pillar Roses against a support. Roses in this class are easily managed and hardy. They should be planted in sunny, open places, 3-4 feet apart, according to the vigor and variety.
Cabbage Roses - The Cabbage Rose species, Rosa centifolia, is dealt with under Rosa (see Rosa). This and varieties of it are shown as Cabbage Roses because of the shape of the flowers.
French Roses - Rosa gallica, which is the original parent species of the French Roses, is described under Rosa (see Rosa)
. Damask Rose - Like the strong growing Cabbage Roses and French Roses, the Damask Roses are very hardy. The type species of the Damask Rose is Rosa damascena, described under Rosa (see Rosa).
Shrub Roses - This name is applied to a miscellaneous group of wild species, simple hybrids between wild species and more complex garden hybrids, with little in common except their growth habit, which is that of a sizable shrub, rather than that of the dwarf and lower Bush. Roses such as the Hybrid Teas are distinct from the lax growth of the Ramblers and Climbers. Many of the Shrub Roses are dealt with under their species name Rosa. Others were mentioned in this section under Hybrid Sweetbriers, Moss Roses, Hybrid Musks, Cabbage Roses, French Roses, Damask Roses and Rugosa Roses. In addition, there are other Shrub-type Roses of hybrid origin that are worth consideration. These will be mentioned below in the varieties section.
Rugosa Roses - The natural, wild forms of Rosa rugosa, both the mauve-pink and white flowered kinds, are zealous, extremely hardy shrubs that can endure cold climates and the salt spray and sandy soils found along the coasts. Plant breeders here and abroad have used the Rugosa Rose to develop a group of hybrid shrubs that are especially useful in shrub border plantings and hedges and sometimes are trained like climbers. They have rich green, heavy foliage that usually takes on an attractive autumn color. These plants are usually resistant to pests and diseases.
Ramblers - The Wichuraiana Ramblers (familiar varieties are Dorothy Perkins and Excelsa) are distinguished by very long and comparatively limber canes or shoots growing from the base or from the main branches of the plant. They are very vigorous; some varieties produce shoots that are 12 to 15 feet long in a year. The foliage is very attractive also; it is rich green and often remains long into the winter. These Ramblers were planted in large numbers, at one time, to cover walls, fences, pillars, arches and pergolas. However, they've been largely replaced by the Large-flowered Climbers, although they still have a great deal of value in the garden. These plants bloom lavishly in June and July and some of them bear flowers later in the year, but these are so few in number that the Ramblers must be regarded as early summer-flowering Roses only. When in full bloom, they provide a tremendous display surpassing anything else in the garden at that time. These Roses do better in the open garden trained over a support, than against a hot, sunny wall, which can expose them to the dangers of red spider mites and thrips (two pests that like hot, dry conditions) and also aphids. If that happens, the foliage becomes sickly and loses its rich green color. They are also susceptible to mildew when grown against a wall. This is especially true of Ramblers of the Dorothy Perkins type. The Ramblers are easy to grow if a few simple precautions are taken.
Trailing Roses - These Roses barely form a distinct class. They are, actually, varieties of Ramblers and Climbers that have very flexible stems, which, if unsupported, lie along the ground. These varieties are useful for covering steep, sunny banks and for using as a ground cover.
Climbers - In a way, Rambler Roses are Climbing Roses, but in addition to them there are several other types of diverse ancestry that are of climbing habit and are good for covering pillars, pergolas, arches, walls and fences. Among these are to be found climbing forms of well-known Bush Roses, including Hybrid Teas, Teas, Polyanthas and Floribundas. The flowers of these climbing forms resemble those of the Bush varieties from which they originated as mutations or "sports". The only difference is in the habit of growth of the plants. Additionally, there is a group of Climbing Roses known as Noisettes that are excellent for mild climates and greenhouses and a group called Large-flowered Climbers that are hardy in the North.
Large-flowered Climbers - This is an important class of Roses that has gained popularity. This group includes Roses of varied ancestry, all of which are characterized by having larger individual flowers that are in looser clusters than are those of the Ramblers. They have a larger assortment of color than the Ramblers do. The earliest examples of this group were obtained by crossing R. Wichuraiana and R. setigera with Hybrid Teas and Hybrid Perpetuals, but many modern varieties have a more complex heredity. Typical Large-flowered Climbers bloom robustly in early summer and then don't produce again, but some have a tendency to repeat and if weather and environmental conditions are agreeable, they may bloom a bit during the summer and make a nice display in the fall. The kinds that tend to bloom in summer and fall along with the main bloom of early summer are called Everblooming Climbers. Pillar Roses is a name given to those Large-flowered Climbers that make only moderate growth and are better adapted for growing against posts or pillars than for covering large expanses. Large-flowered Climbers aren't suitable for growing on pillars or posts because it's necessary that their main branches be trained horizontally if they're to flower well.
Tree or Standard Roses - A Standard or Tree Rose is one that is budded on a Brier, Rugosa or other strong stem, 31/2 feet or more high. Trees aren't a distinct class of Rose, they are the same varieties that are grown as dwarf or bush plants. The only difference is that, instead of being placed low down on the stock, the bud is inserted on the lateral shoots near the top of a tall Brier stem. For Rugosa trees, the buds are inserted in either side of the main stem just below the top growths. Some varieties of Roses prosper better as trees than others, but they are not exclusively Tree Roses because all of them can be grown as Bush Roses. A Rose that's grown in the form of a tree needs much the same treatment in regard to pruning, fertilizing and other care as if it were grown as a bush. In really cold climates, special care must be taken to protect these plants during the winter. A common mistake made in the cultivation of Tree Roses is planting them too deeply. Tree Roses are more difficult to grow than Bush or dwarf Roses, so it's desirable that everything possible be done for their welfare. It seems to be harder on Tree Roses when they are transplanted, so as little root disturbance as possible is favorable.
Creating a Rose Garden: Bush Roses look best when they're grouped. They should be planted to form a Rose garden when possible, not scattered around here and there. One exception is the Floribunda Rose. In a limited area, a Rose garden of formal design is preferred. An assortment of varieties can be arranged to furnish delightful color schemes, which will show off the Roses best. A Rose walk can be made a striking feature in a garden as long as it is fairly long, 80 to 100 feet is preferable. Rose beds arranged along side a wide grass path furnish a gorgeous display in the summer and early fall. The effect can be maximized by strategically placing Tree and Pillar Roses along the length of the Rose beds. Roses look better when used in beds than in long wide borders. They seem to show off better when grouped together and separated by grass paths, than when large unbroken masses are planted in a border. Beds are more attractive when varieties are grouped together, rather than being all mixed together. If your garden isn't large enough to do this, then two or three varieties can be grouped in each bed. Another detail to take into consideration is the height of each variety. They should be matched as close as possible to each other's height and vigor. Catalogues usually supply that information on Bush Roses. If your garden is pretty good sized, it would be greatly improved by adding some Tree Roses, Weeping Trees and Pillar Roses. In a small garden, room can't always be found for Weeping Trees and Pillar Roses because of their size. However, even a couple of Tree Roses, used at either side of a walk can add appeal. Flat beds of low growing Hybrid Teas and Polyanthas are improved by adding Tree Roses intermittently down the center. Pillar Roses may be used to frame a vista by placing them to the rear of Rose beds running down a long garden path. Pillar Roses don't have to be limited to Rose gardens. They are useful at the back of broad perennial borders. Climbing or Rambler Roses look wonderful in the Rose garden if planted against posts connected by rope or chains, along which the long shoots are trained to form festoons. They may also be trained over picket or wooden fences, stone walls or other enclosures around the garden. Allow the rope to droop slightly between the posts. You shouldn't make the Rose beds too wide or they will be tedious to manage. Bush Roses should be planted 18 to 24 inches apart and staggered so that those in the second row come halfway in between those in the first and third rows. A bed 6 feet wide will take three rows of plants without crowding. Tree Roses should be planted 4 to 6 feet apart.
Rose Hedges: There are many suitable kinds of bushes for a Rose hedge. Some of them are vigorous shrubs, which form tall hedges, others form moderately high or low hedges. The latter make the best frame for a Rose garden. Rose bushes to be grown as a hedge must be planted in deeply cultivated and well-fertilized ground, because it's essential that they make strong growth. It should be dug deeply and rich compost or manure should be mixed into the lower layer of soil and bone meal should be mixed into the upper layer. Planting is done in the fall or early spring. Vigorous kinds of Roses, the Penzance Briers for example, should be planted 4 feet apart; others that are less vigorous, such as the Hybrid Musk Roses, 21/2 feet apart; the low growing kinds should be about 15 inches from each other. For the first two years, no pruning, other than removing dead wood, is necessary. Subsequent pruning will be done according to the height desired and the lateral shoots may be shortened as necessary. There are many varieties of Floribunda Roses that, if planted 18-24 inches apart, form a thick hedge and bloom profusely throughout the summer. They require trimming every spring to guarantee shapeliness and the production of strong, new shoots. Vigorous growers suitable for this purpose are Betty Prior, Spartan, Fashion, Vogue and Baby Blaze. Less strong growers good for lower hedges are Chatter, White Bouquet, Fusilier and Golden Fleece. Rosa multiflora has been adopted as a hedge plant in farm areas. It is planted in place of stock fences to enclose pastures and to serve as a windbreak. In small gardens, however, this is not a good idea because it will make too heavy growth. A hedge of this Rose must be pruned severely several times a season, after it is established, to maintain the desired height and width. If allowed to grow unchecked, a single plant will have a 15-foot spread when mature. Roses suitable for forming a tall hedge are Penzance Briers, Conrad F. Meyer and Zepherine Drouhin. Those suitable for low hedges are Frensham, Betty Prior and Salmon Spray. The Hybrid Rugosas such as Agnes, F.J. Grootendorst and Schneezwerg form hardy hedges and are suitable for planting near the sea.
Ground preparation is the most important thing, because Roses aren't likely to be disturbed for several years. Rose bushes will thrive in almost any soil as long as it's prepared correctly. Land that is on the heavy side, provided it has excellent drainage, gives the best results. It is wrong to assume that clay is essential for beautiful Roses. Clay soils usually have bad drainage and require cinders, sand or gravel along with adequate liming to open them up. A good amount of moisture in the subsoil is the first requirement and the subsoil should be broken up to a depth of 20 to 24 inches. A moderate amount of manure, compost or other organic material that will provide humus should be added to subsoil that is thin and has poor texture. The manure shouldn't be placed separately, but needs to be mixed in good with the soil. It shouldn't come in direct contact with the roots or it may burn them. The upper soil should be broken up and enhanced with humus-forming material, such as compost, chopped decomposed sod, leaf mold, peat moss, or very rotten manure. Half a pound of bone meal to each square yard should also be added. Rose nurseries supply Rose food that can be used in place of bone meal. If these instructions are followed, the plants will have a satisfactory root run, which is important for the production of flowers. Roses grow best in soil that is only slightly acidic. If the soil contains excessive acid, an addition of lime or ground limestone should be given in the fall. Liming won't usually be necessary for light soils and at least a month must elapse between liming and applying fertilizers. It's wise to fertilize Rose beds annually to keep them healthy and active. Well-decayed manure should be placed on the Rose beds and forked lightly beneath the surface as soon as pruning is finished. If manure isn't available, bone meal and dried blood or other organic fertilizer, together with rotted compost, may be substituted. A complete Rose fertilizer may also be applied as required, but not after the end of August. Otherwise, soft growths unable to ripen before winter are likely to be produced. Many Rose fanciers supplement the spring feeding with liquid fertilizer applied to the soil. Some liquid fertilizers are completely soluble and can, with care, be sprayed on the foliage alone, or in a mixture with plant sprays. This method is called foliar feeding. The use of mulches is a way of partially preventing the spread of diseases from the soil and they also keep down weeds, making cultivating almost unnecessary during the summer. Mulch helps to retain water and keeps the roots cool, especially in hot, dry weather. When Roses are splashed with rain, a mulch prevents disease spores from the soil onto the bottom leaves. Mulch should be applied to Rose beds as soon as the ground has been leveled, spring pruning is finished, plant food applied and when the soil is dry enough to be workable. Following are several different products to use: ground corn cobs, buckwheat, hulls, peanut hulls, peat moss, shredded bark, sawdust, salt hay, cottonseeds hulls and straw. The mulch should be placed 1 to 4 inches deep, adequately covering the ground enough to keep the weeds from coming through. The mulch is usually left on all summer. Subsequent feeding of the plants, as at flowering time, can be accomplished by applying liquid plant foods through or over the mulch, or by first raking the mulch away from the plants and working the plant food into the soil. The best time to plant dormant Rose bushes is in the fall, if you live in the North, but only where zero or subzero temperatures very seldom occur. In really cold climates, early spring is the best time to plant. In the South, any time from mid-November to mid-February is fine, when conditions are favorable (ie., the ground isn't frozen or soggy and when the weather is mild). Roses that are planted in the spring usually don't start growing as vigorously or as soon as those that are planted in the fall. Some growers prefer the spring planting, because that's when the sap begins to rise. If the land is light, it's better to plant dormant Roses in the fall, because if a hot and dry period sets in during April and May, bushes that are just recently planted may suffer unless special care is taken to keep them moist. When you obtain your Rose bushes from the nursery, they should be unpacked and placed in the soil as soon as possible. If a spot hasn't been found yet, a trench, 10 inches deep, should be dug and the plants placed in it and covered with soil until their permanent spot has been found, which should be as soon as possible. If the land is still frosty, don't unpack the Roses until the thaw comes. If the branches are a bit shriveled when the bushes are unpacked, they should be buried completely in the soil for three or four days and soaked with water. When they're taken out, it will be found that the stems have freshened up considerably. Before a dormant Rose is planted, broken and bruised root ends should be cut back to the healthy parts with a sharp knife or shears and any long roots, which are without fibers, should be shortened by about one-third, or if very long, in half. It's wise to prune back the tops of the bushes a bit. Thin shoots should be cut out completely and each heavy cane should be shortened so that it only has three or four dormant buds left. Cut cleanly about 1/2 inch above the top bud. Remove all labels that are attached to the shoots and tie them to wire stakes placed by the plants. The hole should be about 15 inches across and deep enough to hold the roots when they're spread out horizontally. Don't cramp the roots; never dig a hole that's too deep and narrow, it should be rather wide and shallow. If an all around spread of roots isn't possible, set the bush against one side of the hole. While planting, cover the bushes awaiting their turn with a moist mat or burlap or keep the roots submerged in water to protect them from wind and sun. One of the biggest mistakes that can be made is to plant Roses too deep. Three precautions can be taken to avoid this. One, is that the uppermost roots shouldn't be covered with more than 2 or 3 inches of soil; secondly, the junction of the stock and scion (the place at which the Rose was budded) should be covered with about an inch of soil at the final grade; lastly, the soil mark on the stem showing the depth at which the bush was growing previously should act as a guide to the planter. Rose bushes won't flourish on loose soil, so make sure to tread firmly around the roots of dormant Rose bushes. Usually the roots grow at different levels, so the lower growing roots should be covered first and the soil firmed before adding the rest of the soil and again firming it well. Roses shouldn't be planted in soil that is freshly dug. The beds should be prepared a few weeks ahead to allow the soil a chance to settle. Many failures can be traced to planting in loose soil; this is especially true with Tree Roses. If the ground if too wet to be conveniently trodden, dry soil should be spread over the roots and firmed and then the wet soil may be placed on top and left until it's dry enough to tread really firm. If the weather is dry at the time of planting, water the bushes right after planting to ensure adequate moisture at the roots and that all roots are in close contact with the soil. Later, when the soil is dry, check the bushes to make sure that they can't be moved. If they can be moved even the slightest bit, they must be refirmed right away. For the first two weeks after planting, dormant Rose bushes should have a mound of soil over the base of the branches 6 to 8 inches high. This protects the bark from sun and wind and prevents shriveling until the roots have time to become established and new shoots begin to develop. Afterwards, level the soil.
Tree Roses - Because of the long stems, it is harder on Tree Roses during transplanting than on dwarf Roses. This seems to be supported by the fact that Tree Roses, as received from the nursery, are perfectly healthy, with promising shoots. However, when they're transplanted, some of them fail. When planting these Roses, the ground must be perfectly prepared by digging deeply. Before the roots are covered, supporting stakes should be driven into the ground. When planting is finished, the Rose stem is tied to the stake, making sure that it's fastened near the top, because if that part isn't supported the tree may break off just beneath the head of branches. A second tie should be made halfway down the stem. When winters are mild, Roses should be planted in the fall; they are less likely to suffer as severely than if they were planted in the spring. In cold climates, where they must be protected, planting must be done in the spring. The tree should be unpacked at the soonest possible time after arrival. Place them in a shallow trench and cover the roots and stems with soil. If necessary, soak them with water. The roots should be soaked in a thick puddle of soil and water before planting. If Tree Roses don't start into growth very well, it's worth while to keep the Brier stems thoroughly moist until the trees are able to look after themselves. Strips of flannel, burlap, cloth or heavy paper are wrapped around the stems so that they are fully covered from top to base. The material is kept moist by sprinkling it once or twice a day in warm, dry weather. This helps Tree Roses over a difficult period during the first spring and early summer. Suckers (shoots that develop from the stock on which the named Rose was budded) that are allowed to grow, weaken the true Rose and, unless they are removed, may cause its death. Suckers can usually be distinguished from the shoots of the named Rose easily; they usually have many spines and smaller, light-green leaves. If you aren't sure, it can be decided by checking where the shoot is growing from. If it came from below the place where the bud of the true Rose was inserted, it is a sucker from the understock. Suckers that grow from the main stem are seen easily, but sometimes they grow right at the top of the stem and are hidden among the branches. They are especially hidden on weeping Tree Roses. Therefore, thorough inspection is required. Suckers should be cut away a their base on the roots or stem of the stock. It is useless to break them off, as they will certainly grow again.
Weeping Trees - These are made by budding a Climbing or Rambler Rose on a Brier or Rugosa stem, 5 to 6 feet high. Well-developed specimens provide a gorgeous show of flowers in the summer. They are seen best when set apart from other plantings or in a Rose garden. The care of Weeping Trees is easy. They must be staked securely, because when the head of branches is well developed, it's heavy and the stem may break unless it is adequately supported. At planting time, before the roots are covered, a strong stake should be driven into the soil and a piece of old rubber hose should be placed around the stake before tying the stem of the Rose to it. This prevents the Rose from being chafed and bruised. There must be one tie near the top of the stem and one or two others lower down.
Container-grown Roses - Many places offer for sale container-grown Roses. These are plants in full growth, full of foliage and often with flowers at the time of planting. Container-grown Roses are produced by planting dormant plants in containers of good soil in spring. The containers are usually pots that are made of an asphaltum-paper composition, but sometimes are of other materials. The newly potted Roses are placed in a good position and are taken care of well to encourage strong growth. A good advantage of container-grown Roses is that they may be set out at any time during the growing season and that the buyer may see the plant in bloom before purchasing. Some gardeners feel that container-grown Roses don't become established as well as dormant Roses. For sure, container-grown Roses that are allowed to grow too long before they are planted out are inferior to good dormant plants. Roses should never be left so long that their roots form a thick mat around the inside wall of the container. Since container-grown Roses are already pruned when the dormant plants are set in the containers, no pruning is necessary other than the removal of ill-placed branches or stems. Because these plants are already in full growth at planting time, it is very important not to disturb, break, or damage the roots or ball of soil in which they grow. A few hours before container-grown Roses are planted, they should be watered thoroughly. At planting time, a hole quite a bit wider than the diameter of the container should be made in ground that has been thoroughly spaded and fertilized. Rotted manure, compost or other rich decayed organic matter and a handful or two of bone meal should be thoroughly mixed into the bottom of the hole. The soil in the bottom of the hole should be packed firm and level at the correct distance from the surface, so when the Rose is set into position, its graft or bud union is just beneath the surface. After the Rose has been carefully removed from its container and set into place, fertile topsoil is filled in around the root ball and is packed firm with a thick stick. Take care not to break the root ball when doing this. When the hole is filled within 3 to 4 inches of the top with firmly packed soil, water two or three times and allow to drain away before more soil is added to bring the surface level. Add a mulch of hay, straw, leaves, peat moss or other suitable material over the soil surface around the plant. It's very important to give container-grown Roses enough attention to their watering during the first season in the garden. During dry weather, the ground around them should be soaked to a depth of at least 8 to 9 inches every 5 to 6 days.
Winter care - In many parts of the U.S. and Canada, most Roses must receive special protection against winter cold. The necessity for this depends on the type of Rose and with the severity of cold that is likely to be expected. Many Shrub Roses (species and simple hybrids of species that form large, shrubby plants that are usually used as shrubs rather than as subjects for ordinary flowerbeds) are hardy even without protection even in the harshest cold. Even though, where temperatures are likely to drop lower than 20 below zero and the ground isn't covered with a thick layer of snow, it's smart to push soil up around the base to a height of 1 or 2 feet in late fall. Rambler Roses need protection whenever the winter temperature is expected to fall below zero. The canes should be laid along the ground and covered with a board weighted down with bricks or stones. Mounds of soil should be piled a foot high around their bases. If the temperature is likely to fall to 10 degrees below zero, the entire length of the canes should be covered with soil after they've been laid and pinned along the ground with wire "hairpins" or forked wooden pegs. Hybrid Perpetuals, Dwarf Polyanthas and Large-flowered Climbers should be protected whenever the temperature is likely to fall below 5 degrees by mounding the soil around their bases, 8 to 12 inches high. If the temperature is apt to fall below minus 10 degrees, the canes of the Large-flowered Climbers should be laid along the ground and covered with a board that's weighted down. If the temperature falls to 20 below zero or lower, the entire canes should be laid on the ground and covered with soil as described for Rambler Roses. Hybrid Teas, Floribundas, Miniatures and Climbing Hybrid Teas need extra precautions taken where the temperature may fall to 10 degrees or lower. A mound of soil should be piled around the bases of the plants, 8 to 9 inches high. (This might cover Miniature plants completely.) This is usually sufficient, however, if the temperature tends to fall as low as 15 below zero a heavy mulch of evergreen branches, straw, salt hay or similar material should be given along with the soil mounded up. Tea Roses are inapt for growing where temperatures are prone to falling below zero. They should be protected by having a mound of soil, 8 to 9 inches high, heaped around their bases whenever the temperature falls to 20 degrees. Before mounding soil around Teas, Hybrid Teas, Floribundas and Dwarf Polyanthas, all shoots should be cut back to 21/2 feet, if they aren't that height already. Roses that are grown as Standards (tree form) need special care in areas where the temperature falls to 15 degrees. The least protection would be to lay them down and cover them with soil. The tops should be cut back so that the branches aren't longer than 12 to 15 inches long. They are then laid and pegged down along the ground and completely covered with soil. Laying down the trees consists of taking a few spadefuls of dirt away from one side and carefully keeling the plant over away from that side. This way the stem is laid horizontally without being snapped. However, if the temperature falls below minus 10 degrees, a mulch of leaves, evergreen branches, straw or salt hay should be placed over the mound of soil after it freezes. If the temperature is likely to fall below minus 20 degrees, Tree Roses should be dug up in the fall and completely buried in a trench. Many gardeners find that this is the easiest method no matter how cold the winters get. Soil that is mounded around the bases of the Roses is the most effective method to protect against cold, except for Tree Roses. Soil mounding should begin after the first hard frost of the fall and before the ground freezes. The mounds of soil should be at least 8 inches high, the higher the better. The soil conducts warmth from the deeper layers of soil and even when the outside temperature is below zero and the surface of the soil is the same, an inch or two below the surface the soil doesn't fall to the killing point, which is lower than 20 degrees. However, the soil mound only protects the part of the plant that it covers. With many Roses, though, if the lower 6 to 8 inches are protected, enough new shoots will grow from that portion to renew the plant in a single season and most kinds (not the Ramblers and Climbers) will bloom on the new growth. The killing back above the soil simply acts as partial pruning. Mounds of soil around the bases don't protect the upper parts of Ramblers and Climbers. These, if killed down to the base, will produce new shoots, but they won't flower on these during the first year. That is the reason why the canes need to be taken down and laid along the ground as described previously. When Roses are planted together closely, the best method of mounding is to bring the soil used for mounding from another part of the garden. This avoids the roots from being exposed. The soil can be kept in place by stiff, waterproof collars tied around each plant. Where the Roses are widely spaced, soil may be piled up with a hoe from between the plants and from around the edges of the bed, being careful not to bare the roots. When this method is used, it's smart to fill the hollows from which the soil has been taken, after the ground has frozen, with salt hay, leaves, straw or manure. In extremely cold climates, an additional covering of salt hay, coarse straw, evergreen branches or littery, loose manure may be added after the soil mounds are well frozen. In the spring, about the time that new growth begins, the mounds are broken down and the soil moved away. Sooner or later, Rose beds will need to be replenished. The soil may become impoverished, sour or waterlogged and any new Roses won't have a good chance at survival. Either the whole bed can be cleared and a new one made, or the bushes that have deteriorated can be replaced. If most of the bushes are unsatisfactory, it would be better to dig them up and remove the soil to a depth of 18 inches, break up and renew the subsoil and add a good, loamy topsoil. If this isn't possible, then the best thing to do would be to rest the soil from Roses for two years, taking steps during that time to bring it to good condition by the good cultivation of other kinds of flowers. The old Rose plants may be replanted in rows in the cutting garden (garden set aside for the production flowers used for cutting). If just a few of the bushes are in poor condition, they may be replaced individually, but for every one removed the soil should be dug up to 18 inches deep and replaced with fresh topsoil before setting a new bush in. If the bed has only one variety then it is a simple matter, but if the bed is of mixed varieties, careful choice must be made to maintain the balance of the bed. It's important that the new varieties match the vigor of those that remain in the bed. Replacements of these plants may be accomplished through the use of potted plants that come in heavy paper or metal containers. Remove the plant from the container carefully and set them so their crown is an inch below the surface. They shouldn't be pruned and make sure to keep them watered, especially in hot, dry weather.
Greenhouse Roses - Growing Roses in greenhouses that are reserved solely for them is good, because it allows the temperatures, humidity, light and ventilation to be adjusted to the specific needs of the Roses. Insects and disease are controlled easier in a greenhouse. In small greenhouses, Roses may flower during the winter and spring by purchasing bushes for delivery in November and by planting them individually in pots 6 to 8 inches in diameter. Hybrid Tea and Floribunda varieties of Roses should be pruned at potting time to a height of 9 to 10 inches. They should then be placed outside or in a cold frame to mature fully before they are brought into the greenhouse about the first of January. A temperature of 55 to 60 degrees at night, with a daytime rise of 5 or 10 degrees is beneficial to growth. Rambler and Climbing varieties may be forced into flower by following similar procedures. After potting, they may be trained to almost any desired shape by tying their stems to wires or bamboo stakes. If started into growth about the first of January, the Roses may be flowered for Easter. When Easter is late and the days are sunny it may be necessary towards the end of their growing period to lower the greenhouse temperature a bit, in order to time the flowers for the date required. The same plants may be buried to the rims of their pots in a sunny location outside for the summer and be brought back to the greenhouse for forcing the following winter. During the summer they must be watered and fertilized regularly and kept free from disease and pests by dusting and spraying. Roses won't grow well in shade. In greenhouses with low roofs (where there is at least 5 or 6 feet of headroom from the soil) there is likely to be more humidity, which is an advantage to the Roses. Roses will grow best in rich soil enhanced with decayed organic matter and that has great drainage. If soil isn't porous enough, a generous addition of sharp sand and peat moss will improve it greatly. The addition of half a pint of superphosphate to each bushel of soil will provide phosphorus, which most soil lacks. When potting, soil should have the texture and moisture that when a handful is held tightly and then the hand is opened, the ball of compressed soil will slowly fall apart and not remain in a tight clod. When potting, make sure that the soil is firm and water right away. Organic fertilizers in liquid form may be used often in weak solutions after the plants are established and actively growing. Even though Roses prefer moist conditions, too much humidity must be avoided when the temperature in the greenhouse is falling. Too much moisture that collects on the foliage, walls and paths in the afternoon and evening is conductive to the black-spot disease, which is the worst disease that Roses are prone to. Sunny days should be used to sprits underneath the foliage in a fine spray. This helps to keep red spider mites, which live on the leaves, down to a minimum. Spraying should be accomplished before noon only so that the foliage dries before dusk. Ventilate at all favorable chances, but guard against cold drafts because these encourage the development of mildew disease. During the winter, the temperature may rise above 70 degrees on sunny days, which is great for growth, as long as the greenhouse has adequate ventilation. When Roses are grown directly in soil filled benches or in solid ground beds in the greenhouse, their culture is generally the same as those grown in pots. Good drainage is important. If the greenhouse is located on heavy clay soil, special care must be taken when planting ground beds. It may be necessary to lay agricultural drain tiles to carry away extra water. Benches or raised beds are often 32 to 36 inches above path level. One-inch wrought iron pipe is used as framework. This is tied together with split malleable iron castings secured by set screws and bolts, which may be purchased from greenhouse manufacturers. Pecky cypress boards, 6 inches wide, are often used for the sides and bottom. Angle-iron plates for the corners and flat iron for the joints may be attached with screws or carriage bolts. These bottom boards should be cut to fit across the bench. If they are arranged this way, replacements can be made easier if a board rots or breaks. Since news boards swell when wet, they should be placed at least 1/2 inch apart. A good base for the soil for Rose benches and beds is grass sod from an old pasture, cut 4 to 6 inches thick. This should be stacked outdoors in layers, with alternate layers of cow manure and a liberal sprinkling of superphosphate added to each layer. Stacking should be done 3 or 4 months before the soil is needed for the greenhouse. Roses may be planted at almost any season. May to early June is the best time. They will have enough opportunity to make good growth and supply flowers in abundance by autumn. Besides, spring-grafted plants obtained in 3-inch pots are ready for planting by May or June and have the sunniest days of the year in which to grow. Hybrid Tea and Floribunda Roses propagated from cuttings are not recommended for greenhouse use because they don't produce the root growth of plants grafted on Manettii and other favored understocks. The Rose bushes should be spaced about 15 inches apart each way. Set them so that the union of scion and stock of the Rose is about 1/2 inch below the surface. As they grow, supports will be needed. Frames of galvanized iron pipe are attached at each end of the bed or bench with as many frames located at different points that may be needed to support horizontal wires that are stretched tightly between the frames. A 4- to 5-foot long stake of heavy gauge wire is inserted in the soil at each plant and is secured to one of the horizontal wires above. As the flowers develop, a lot of water is needed. The water will leach fertilizer elements from the soil and these should be replaced be applying an organic fertilizer in liquid form diluted to a weak solution. Apply this weekly when the plants are in active growth and are producing well. As flower production slows down, the supplies of fertilizer and water are diminished. Roses benefit from a rest period after a full season of flowering. This is accomplished by greatly reducing the water supply and by giving more ventilation for 3 or 4 weeks. During this time only enough water is given to keep the bark from shriveling. After the soil is fairly dry, the top 11/2 inches is removed and replaced with fresh soil. It is recommended that pruning be done at this time. The strong shoots should be cut back to half their length and all weak shoots removed. If Rose plants are cared for correctly, they will produce well for several years before needing to be replaced with young plants.
Exhibition Roses - Roses grown for show need special care and diligence in the spring and early summer in fighting pests. The most important thing is having deep and rich soil. By digging deeply, adding manure and good loamy soil, Roses of high standard may be grown in any sunny garden. Whether the soil is light or heavy, deep digging is necessary. This consists of breaking up the subsoil or underlayer and replacing the top layer. Light sandy soil needs an addition of fibrous rooted turf that has been stacked for a year or two, with layers of farmyard manure between. Compost is also good. Generous amounts of rotted cow or horse manure is recommended. The manure must be decayed well if planting is to follow at an early date. It must be mixed in thoroughly and bone meal, 2 to 3 oz. to the square yard, should be spread on the surface and forked in. This is all that they'll need the first year. Applying quick acting fertilizers before they are established can be harmful. In the following years, one or two feedings with a commercial Rose fertilizer, applied at pruning time and during the growing season, will work great. Occasional applications of liquid manure (made by immersing a bushel of farmyard manure in a 20-gallon barrel of water) will increase the size of the flowers and enhance the coloring. Dressings of complete fertilizer should be given when needed. The serious exhibitor should learn how to bud Roses, because from maiden plants (those budded the previous year) the most beautiful flowers are usually obtained. When bushes, two or more years old are to be relied on, the question of pruning is very important. Roses can hardly be pruned too hard the first spring after planting. They should be cut back to two buds from the base of the previous year's growth. In subsequent years, all dead and weak shoots should be removed along with some of the oldest wood. The best of the prior year's shoots are then cut back to two buds. This produces quality flowers on long stems. Some exhibitors claim that moderate pruning of established plants produces better flowers than pruning hard, however, it is necessary to limit the number of shoots. When the new shoots are growing it will be noticed that most of them bear three buds at the tips. In almost every case the center one will give the best bloom, so the side buds should be removed as soon as possible. This gives all the strength of the shoot into producing one excellent bloom. Hot sunshine often bleaches the colors and rainstorms cause some of the heavy flowers, or those with thin petals, to become spotted or stained. To prevent this, English gardeners use shades that are rarely seen in North America. The consist of cone-shaped, wire frames covered with thin material resembling canvas, which are held in position on stakes and can be adjusted to any height. In normal weather, they're not used until two days before the show. Most American gardeners prefer to cut their bloom just as the buds are beginning to open. These are kept cool indoors until show time. To preserve the freshness of the flower and to lengthen the central petals, English growers also surround the bloom with thin, greaseproof paper in the form of a funnel, tied just below the flower. In this case, protection from rain must be given as soon as the paper is in position. As the blooms are opening, especially the thin varieties, English exhibitors often press the outer petals gently back and insert a loop of soft, thick worsted over the inner ones, a short distance from the base and draw them together. The effect of this is to elongate the bud and produce a higher center, which is desired in exhibition blooms. It also tends to prevent them from opening prematurely. The tie may be left on until just before the exhibition hall is cleared for judging and then carefully removed. The best time to cut your Roses is the evening before the show, between 5 and 7 o'clock. They should be cut with a good length of stem using sharp shears and placed immediately in water that just about reaches the flowers. Never cut the flowers when they're wet or they'll lose color on the show day and may become stained. If any have been out in the rain, allow them to dry off in a cool, dark, airy room. All blooms must be correctly named. Extra flowers should be kept in reserve in case any of those first selected prove unsatisfactory or open before the time of judging. In substituting others, be very careful not to include duplicates in classes of distinct varieties. Keep the flowers as cool as possible after cutting. In arranging a collection of flowers, make sure that the colors don't clash and set those of dark and light colors next to each other. A bright colorful exhibit will always score over equally good blooms of paler varieties.
Bush Roses - Newly purchased Bush Roses of the Hybrid Tea type, planted at the end of February, should be pruned before planting; otherwise, prune at the usual time. Pruning during late fall or winter, when the bushes are dormant, is advisable. It is said that with this method, the bushes never bleed and aren't susceptible to damage by late spring frosts. It is doubtful whether any real advantage is gained and the traditional advice to prune when growth begins in spring is still legitimate. Summer pruning is of questionable value. The growing bush needs the plant food produced by the foliage and even pruning or cutting the blooms with very long stems, especially on young bushes, tends to weaken the plant. Usually, Hybrid Tea Roses bloom the best when pruned lightly. The object of the gardener is to force the bushes to produce fresh, strong shoots; the more vigorous, new shoots that there are, the better the show of flowers will be. It might be thought that the harder pruned the bush is, the stronger the shoots will be that are produced. With Hybrid Tea Roses that are well fed and established in good soil, however, that is not always the case. They are naturally vigorous so if they are pruned moderately or lightly they'll produce more shoots, strong enough to produce good flowers. Gardeners who grow Roses for exhibition do prune harder to produce quality flowers on strong stems. The bushes seem to become stunted and deprived of their natural vigor if their annual pruning is too harsh. Those who are disappointed with their flowers following a hard pruning should try either moderate or light pruning as described later on. The gardener should always remember to cut back to a dormant bud that points in the direction in which the new shoot is wanted. It's always wise to cut just above a bud that points outward when a branch is cut that points inwards. This prevents the center of the bush from becoming filled with shoots. It's always better to keep an "open center" to allow full air exposure and sunshine in. The ideal Dwarf Rose bush is one that has a limited number of branches well apart from each other and that is free from small, weak shoots, which are worthless and hinder the development of other and better ones. Many amateur gardeners never really prune their Roses at all; they simply snip off the ends of long shoots until the bushes are more or less the same height. The result of not thinning out the dead, weak and diseased shoots is that in a few years the bushes become tall and lanky. They start growing from the top and produce weak shoots and, consequently, poor blooms. The most difficulty that people have is to distinguish between light and hard pruning. Below are some methods to ensure correct pruning: All cuts must be made above a dormant bud or eye. A slanting cut is necessary because it allows moisture to run away more quickly, allowing the wound to heal faster. Newly planted Hybrid Teas should be cut back to the third or fourth eye from the base of the bush. On very poor land pruning may be less drastic. The reason for hard pruning the first season is the inability of the bush to carry a heavy crop the following summer. The establishment of a good root system is essential before a large plant can be supported. Moderate pruning consists of removing all dead, worn out and weak wood, any crossing stems and those growing toward the center. Reduce the main stems and laterals of the previous summer, in half. Light pruning differs in that the cutting back is confined to the old flower stems, which are pruned back just enough to shape the plant and to eliminate thin stems. Lightly pruned Roses won't really respond with stronger growth and more flowers unless they're in really good soil. This explains why light pruning is sometimes a failure. Judicious feeding is helpful under such conditions. When pruning, look for stems showing diseased brown areas (canker) on the bark, or other signs of stem or bark injury. Prune these back to solid, healthy wood. Remove very old canes, which, last year, made poor growth and no strong side branches. Usually, these must be pruned just about to the base of the plant to force new vigorous shoots to grow.
Hybrid Perpetuals - Prune in early spring, cutting out all dead, weak or damaged shoots and any that are crowding their neighbors. Four to eight vigorous shoots should be left and they are cut to 2 or 3 feet above ground level, the height depends on the vigor of the plant. The thinner and weaker ones are cut more than the thick ones. If taller plants are desired, they may be left longer, though, this means that most of the flowers will be produced above eye level unless special training is followed. In order to have them bloom below eye level and all at approximately the same height, the shoots may be trained by allowing the stout, new shoots to grow naturally during the summer. In autumn, after all growth has stopped, bend these shoots down so that they spread radially from the center of the bush. Tie them to a series of stakes that are placed firmly in the ground and that protrude about a foot above the soil. The object is to secure the Rose canes in a horizontal position, parallel with the surface of the ground and about a foot above it. Only enough canes should be tied down to fill the available space and these should be the strongest and best that the bush has; unwanted canes should be pruned out. Established Hybrid Perpetual Roses that are trained this way may be pruned by allowing a sufficient number of shoots to grow erect each summer to replace those that have been tied down; in the fall, the tied down ones are cut out and are replaced by tying the new, erect shoots into position. Another way is that the horizontal canes are retained for more than a year and each spring the vertical shoots that grow from them are pruned back to about an inch of their bases.
Polyanthas - Very little pruning is necessary for these Roses. Any wood that failed to bloom the previous year should be cut down to the base. Don't remove thin growths unless this is desirable to keep the center open, since the growths are naturally thinner than those of the Hybrid Teas.
Miniature Roses - These Roses should be pruned lightly in early spring, simply cutting out dead shoots and shortening tips of the rest.
Hybrid Sweetbriers - Frequent heading back of extra long shoots is necessary to make the plants bushy.
China Roses - This and other China Roses need little pruning. They should be looked over in the spring and dead or very weak shoots that may hinder the growth of better ones should be cut out. The remaining branches can be shortened by about a third. China Roses have thin growth, so light pruning is fine for them.
Moss, Cabbage, Damask and French Roses - After the first spring, these Roses should be pruned lightly. The branches of the past year's growth should be shortened to within five buds of the base. In upcoming years, it is enough to cut out weak and inappropriately placed shoots and to shorten the rest by one-third. In time the plants make strong shrubs.
Hybrid Musks - In the spring following planting, the branches should be shortened to about 12 inches. In following years, it's only necessary to cut out old branches or parts of them, remove dead and weak shoots and slightly shorten the main branches of the previous year's growth. Shoots of weak growths may be shortened by a third, but only the tips of strong ones should be cut off.
Rambler Roses - At planting time, these plants should be cut back to about half their height. As new shoots grow, they are tied to the supports, though not tightly, as they are likely to sink a bit in the soil during the winter months. The next summer, fresh shoots should develop and these will blossom the following year. Next spring, the tops of any shoots that
Back to our botanical home page.