– Roses prefer a position in full sunlight and do not flower as well in shade.
– Roses need well-drained soil. They do not like wet feet and due to lack of oxygen, may not survive.
– If you can, prepare the soil 2-3 months in advance with cow, horse or chicken manure and compost mixed through the soil, as this will greatly improve the performance of the rose.
– Mulching retains the moisture in the soil, which reduces stress of the plant and encourages growth. Sugar cane mulch or lucern hay are particularly good as they give nitrogen to the soil; avoid eucalyptus and pine based mulch as they are antiseptics which can do more damage than good.
– Before planting a potted rose, till the soil about 2 feet wide and 2 feet deep. Dig a hole the same size as the pot and transfer the rose into the ground as a whole without disturbing the roots. Keep the roots moist during transplantation.
– You can apply seasol at this stage to encourage growth, but do not fertilize as this may burn the roots.
– Water the newly planted rose several times once planted and continue watering 2-3 times per week during the summer months; more if weather is very hot. Plants in pots need watering more regularly, every 1-2 days.
– Fertilizing is advisable 2-3 months after planting using either mature manure; applied liberally 2-3 times a season starting in early September; or a rose fertilizer N.P.K. based (Nitrogen, Phosperous, Potassium & Potash), according to instructions. Usually the first application is in September, then in eight-week intervals until the end of Autumn.
– Using Potash, Ag Lime, Dynamic Lifter, Blood & Bone or spraying with Seasol is also recommended as options.
– Spraying for aphids and other insects is recommended when seen on roses. We recommend Mavrik applied every 10-12 days until no longer seen. You can try a home brew of tabasco sauce or garlic mixed with water as an alternative.
– Spraying for blackspot is a commitment for the season, usually August to May. It is a partial preventative, not a cure. We prefer to encourage healthy gardening procedures then a chemical spray programme.
– If you choose to spray for blackspot, we recommend Eco-Fungicide by Eco Organics; Baycor; or Triforine. Or a combination of two applied alternately every 10-12 days, on a dry day, during the flowering season.
– Spray for mildew if needed at the beginning and end of the season using Mancozeb, applied according to instructions; or a home brew of milk & water as this provides calcium to strengthen rose.
– Spray for scale if needed using White Oil, or a home-brew mix combination of Bi-carbonate Soda and White Oil.
– Prune after every flush of roses during the flowering season as this encourages a better shape and avoids energy going to older unwanted stems.
– Prune 12cm from the graft, or about 2/3rds off. Create an open vase shape pruning deadwood, 1/3 of the older branches and thin twiggy brances. The harder you prune a rose, the better it turns out.