Think of the popular trend of relaxed, informal floral designs and it’s highly likely that garden roses will be one of the flowers that come to mind.
I remember seeing them in abundance at the Flowers from the Farm stand at the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show last year. Rachel from Green and Gorgeous had adorned the stand with her beautiful roses, including varieties such as Queen of Sweden, Just Joey, Chris Beardshaw, Chandos Beauty and East Park. And the scent…well, it was absolutely stunning!
(Above are Sweet Dream, East Park, L’Aimant and Samaritan Harkness. Below are Chandos Beauty, Pearl Abundance Harkness, Louisa Stone and Cream Dream.)
If you would like to grow roses in your garden this year, did you know that now is the perfect time to plant them? We’re currently in the middle of what’s called ‘bare root’ season. It starts in October and ends in March. During this time, rose plants are dormant and in their natural resting period.
How to plant and care for your roses
- When planting a bare root rose, ensure the ground is frost free and choose a spot which will be in full sun.
- The roots should ideally be soaked in water for about 30 minutes to an hour prior to planting. This will ensure that they’re well hydrated.
- Dig a hole large enough for the roots to spread out.
- Mix well-rotted farmyard manure or compost with the soil in the bottom of the hole.
- Place the rose in the hole and spread out the roots.
- Find the point where the rose was grafted and use this as a guide for your soil level.
- Fill in and around the roots using the soil that was originally dug to make the hole.
- Tread the soil firmly down and then water the rose well.
Here’s a video, which I hope you find useful:
In March, prune your rose down to a few inches above the soil level. This will help to encourage a lovely, bushy plant. And then in the summer, water the plant on a daily basis. Also, use an insecticide to keep insects at bay and prune it.
If you would like to learn about growing and caring for roses, here are some of the courses taking place in 2016.
Rose Pruning with Tory Scott-Smith
Sarah Raven, Perch Hill Farm | Tuesday, 2nd February | 10.30am-4.00pm
This course will cover pruning and training roses, plus the general rules of pruning, including shrubs and fruit trees.
David Austin: The Roses Expert (online)
MyGardenSchool | 3rd February – 2nd March
This rose growing course, taught by Michael Marriott, looks at the world of roses, the many ways they can be used in the garden and how to look after them.
RHS Wisley | Tuesday 10th or Wednesday 11th February | 10.30am-12.30pm
This course covers all the major rose types including hybrid tea, floribunda, shrub roses and climbers, and demonstrate the correct pruning and planting techniques to allow each one to reach its full potential.
Winter Rose Planting, Pruning & Care
Petersham Nurseries | Tuesday, 23rd February | 11.ooam-12.30pm
A fascinating and informative introductory talk, focusing on a passion for highly scented old fashioned roses.
Rose Pruning Workshop
Rosebie Morton | Thursday, 25th February | 9.30am-12.30pm
Join Rosebie in Rose Paddock looking at the various different types of rose bushes and learning how to prune them. Rosebie will also address climbers and ramblers and discuss ways of tackling them.
Design Solutions : Roses
RHS Wisley | Saturday, 27th June | 1.45pm-4.15pm
There are well over 150 species of wild rose on the planet and thousands of varieties. Their cultivation goes back at least 3,000 years. They’re spectacular plants that are still badly used or under-used in our gardens. The talk will explore both the old and the new, design uses and practicalities such as planting, pruning and aftercare.
Green and Gorgeous | Sunday 3rd July | 10.00am-2.00pm
Worlds apart from the sterile, factory-grown fare, the garden rose’s beauty and scent is irresistible. Find out about sourcing and planting, top 10 varieties for flowers from June til October, pruning for stem length, feeding, dead-heading and picking tips.
So, I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s blog post and that it’s inspired you to grow roses, whether in your garden or if you’re a florist, for your floral designs.
* This post is brought to you in collaboration with Homebase. All the words are my own.
(Images : Homebase)