Tag Archives: Rose

10 quick tips on how to look after roses

In part one, I went into detail about how I at RS Gardening Services would go about planting a clients rose.
Here in part 2, I will tell you how to care for roses through the spring to the winter.

How to Care  for  your  roses  in  spring

Spring is when the season starts to get busy .with the first shoots appearing on roses.
If these shoots are left to grow they will make the Rose look very unsightly indeed.

Plus the fact that:-

  • (a) The branches will rub against each other and cause cancerous growth.
  • (b) The center will be overcrowded and thus stop the vital air flow to the plant.
    Leading to an infection of Black Spot and other pathogens to infect the plant.
  • (c) Cause of a large number of branches your roses will only produce small flowers instead of large one.
  • (d) And finally, it weakens the stability of rose itself as it becomes top-heavy

So pruning them right down is essential if you want good healthy roses.

How to prune your roses

When Pruning roses its essential you use a good quality secateurs
I prefer the Bypass ones as they cut cleanly than the others that seem to me anyway to squeeze the stems.
Sharp ones don’t snag the stem and leave a scraggy end.

Bypass  secs

Should  the   stem  be  too  thick  to  cut  with  these  use  the  same  bypass  Loppers  to  and   a  good  tree  saw for  larger   trunks

I always  carry  these  tools  with  me  cause  I  never  know  when  ill  be  needing  them

Loppers       Pruning  saws

There  are  three  things  that  you  should  be  aware off  when  pruning  rose

  • There are three different types of roses, that need to be pruned differently:-
  1. The floribunda like the name suggests “floribunda”  is Latin for Flora-Flowers &  bunda – many ie many flowers.

These  flowers  are  small  but  are  very  vibrant and  only  need  to prune very  lightly    ie  I  usually  prune  these   to  three   buds  from  the  top  just  to  keep  the  shape  as  they  can   become  untidy

Florabunda roses

This  picture  is  an  exception  here  the  rose  has  been  pruned  not  quite  hard  back  but  just  about  the  size  to  get  these   blooms

Remember the harder you prune the less number of flowers you will make.

A process of trial and error is always at play when you prune these roses.  If  its  too  short  this  year  try  pruning  it  a  bit  higher  up  next  year  or  visa  versa

  • (2)  Standards

When pruning standards the first thing is to think of is its shape.

so like the floribunda, a very light pruning is  needed  to  keep  it  symmetry if  its  a  bush  type

With other standards you have to think do I want more or little flowers on the bush. In case of My clients its always bigger and better blooms so a hard pruning like the other varieties are needed.

For normal roses, I prune them quite hard down to two or three out facing buds from the bottom or even down to one out facing bud if its old wood.

The  basic  rule  for  pruning  is  to  keep  to  the  what I call  the  3ds

  • Cut  out  any  dead
  • Diseased
  • Dying  branches    first
  • Then  concentrate  on  the branches  that  are
  • Inward  pointing  to  the  center  of  the  bush   to  improve  ventilation
  • Always  cut  with  a  slant  –  as  the  diagram   shows  bellow  this  helps  water  to  run  off  and  not  rot  the  shoots

Don’t  be  afraid  to  prune  them  quite  hard  they  can withstand  any  harsh  treatment

pruning  cuts


Now that you have pruned your roses they will need a good solid feed to keep them healthy. This is done by a well-decomposed compost around the base of the of the roses. (  I prefer this way as I have experienced in my trials of different products that some fertilizers have a high content of nitrogen which can produce sappy growth.

on the other hand, too much organic matter can lock in nitrates.  so a careful balance is needed.

More details can be found on the following blog  on  mulches    .

If the clients got any handy I prefer to use green waste from the recycle places since they don’t carry any weeds.

But  if  all  that  fails  normal  organic  matter  from  there  compost  heap  mixed  with  a  special  blend  of  J bowers   fish blood  and  bone   fertilizer  or  Vitax Q



When applying a mulch always leave a gap around the stem so you can water around the base of the plant

Autumnal  Rose Care

Their  Show  might  be  over  but  like  one  rosarian  ounce  said

If you give your roses some care during autumn, they will get safely through the winter, coming back healthy, vigorous and full of flowers next year.

So  here  is  how  IDogardening4U  looks  after  your  roses


  •  I  will  dead  them  (  Sometimes  leaving  the  hips  on  depending  on  the  clients  choice  )  So  that  though  they  have  finished  flowering  the  hips  will  add  that  splash  of  colour  to  what  could  be  a  dull  wet  day



  • I  will  pick  off  all  the dead, diseased  foliage on  the  plant  and  around  the  base  of  plants  as it  can  be  splashed  back  on  to  the  plant  when  it  rains



  • I will prune out all  the  dead, diseased and  dying  stems  on  the  bushes  with  a  clean  cut  secateurs



Due to the heavy winds, we get in August to March it is advisable to do a light prune of large leggy branches that will get knocked about.

This may  or  not  leave your  hips  intact


Finally  Ill will  thin  out  the  heads  of  crowns   on  your  standard  roses  as  the  wind  will  in case  cause  them  damage


Winter  Pruning

The only purpose for winter pruning is to reduce the wind rock on the rose and remove any dead, diseased and dying branches.

So ideally the rose should be only cut down by half to outward facing bud.

And with anything else, all branches should be burnt in an incinerator to avoid recontamination of the soil. AS  its  this  time  of  year  when  the  weather  damp  that  Black  Spot  spores  begin  to  spread

I hope  you  found  this  of  good  use   and  informative  in  part  3    Ill  will  look  into    Pest  and  Disease  control  of  Roses .

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How to care for your roses

PicMonkey Collage (1)

 Part 1


In my line of work, I often get asked for help by my many of clients on the correct way to look after their roses.

Especially if their roses are under the weather are suddenly dying on them,

Hence I decided to write this blog on how to look after your roses from planting to pruning.


There  are  several  things  you  should  look  out  for  when  purchasing  a  rose  bush ( the  ideal  time  to  plant  a  rose  is  from  Oct  to  Dec  –  This  because  the  plants  in  its  dormant  stage and  all  the  energy  is  back  into  the  roots  )

  • Is  it  disease  resistant  (  well  for  two  or  more  years  any  way  )  No  roses  are  immune  to  Black  Spot  –  which  is  a  fungal  spore  by  the  way
  • Where  is  it  to  be  planted  – ie  All  roses  crave  sunlight
  • How  is  it  package  –  Many  high  street  chains  package  them  badly  and  ending  up  in    hurting  the  roses  esp  when  they  are  bound  together  with  tape
  • Is  the  Plant  damage   ie  damage  stems  can  often  kill  the  roses   by  allowing  stem  canker  to  thrive
  • Where  do want  to  plant the  roses :-
    (a)  Avoid  planting  in  shady  areas
    (B) Avoid intense competition from other plantsAvoid planting in winter sites

Before  you  do  any thing  to  the  rose   plant  the  loose  roots  or  root  ball  in  a  bucket  water.

  • This  helps  the  roots  to  absorb   water  quickly

Also  helps  to  loosen  the  solid  root  ball   to  allowing  the  tiny  lateral  roots  to  spread  out

Also  this  trick  works  well  with  root  bound  plants

Whilst  you  are  doing  that  it  time  to  prep  the  ground

What  I  do  is

  • Gently fork over the soil first to remove any builders rubble or stones dar-129
  • Get  my  mixture  of  well  rotted  manure  and  Bone  meal    ready  in  wheel  barrow
  • I  then  start  to  dig  the  a  hole  a  spit  wide  and  a  spit  deep
  • dar-103
  • Then  with  a  scraper  I  just  loosen  the  edges  in  the  hole  which  would  have  been  made  compacted  by  the  digging
  • Incorporate  my  mix  into  the  base   and  fork  it  then  ensures  that  all  the  soil  microbes  in  the  soil  rot  the  manure  down  and release it  to  he  plant  evenly
  • dar-107
  • If  a  stake  is  needed  I  hammer  that  in  first   to  avoid  damaging  the  roots
  • I  then  fill  in  the  hole  with  rain  water  or  tap  water  to  the  top  and  wait for  it  to  soak  in

With  the  Prep  out  the  way  I  then  plant  the  Rose  bush  in  the  hole  making  sure  that  the  soil  level  on  the   rose  is  level  with  the  soil  this  is  because

    • If   its  above  the  soil  line  it  will  produce  suckers


  • planting  a  roseThen  when  I  have  the  level  just  right  I  start  to  back  fill  the   hole  and  shaking  the  bush  to  distribute  the  soil  among  the  root
  • And  then  with  my  heel  or  spade  i  then  compact  it the top soil  down
  • And  finally  give  the  rose  a  good  soaking

The  Next  Stage


In  my  travels  I  have  witness  many  bad  ways  of  staking  a  tree    from  string  to  copper  wire  although  these  are  very  cheap  they  also  can  be  harmful  to  Roses  as  the  stems  expand  and  surround  the  tie  as it  n  slowly  begins  to  cut  through  the  stem .

The  proper  way  is  to  use  a  proper  tree  tie  and  spacer and  not  to  tie  the   stake  to  the  bush  but   the  bush  to  stake

As  Shown  here

Rose  with  stakes

Finally    I  then  add   layer  of  bark  chips  to  give   the  plant  with  that  extra  adding   protection against  blackspot  which  could  splash  up  from  the  surface and  also  give  the  plant  with  the  added  micro  fauna  to  promote  healthy  growth

Bark  Chips

I  Do  hope  you  enjoyed  this  Blog    and  Subsribe  for  updates  or  My  News  letter   Part  two  and  three  are    coming  shortly

Powdery Mildew

Identification and  damage


Powdery Mildew on a Rosa species .

As you  can see Mildew  comes  in  a white powdery  mycelia and spore growth that forms on leaf surfaces and shoots and sometimes on flowers and fruits.These  are  the  fruiting of  the  fungus.

It  can  severely  effect  woody  plants  as  young  sapping which  would  dwarfed.


Downey Mildew  thrive  in  temperatures ranging  from  50 to  60  degrees  wuth  humidity  of  90%

It  can  be  recognized  by  only  being  specific  to  the  leaves  &  not  like  its  other  relation Powdery  Mildew  which  effect  the  stalks  as  well.

And  require  the  opposite it  needs  free  water  and  temperatures  ranging  from

60 -80  degrees  to  germinate.


Prevention  is  the  only  way  with  this  I’m  afraid  :-

  • Make  sure  that  the  air  is  well  circulated  either  out  doors  or  inside
  • water  the  plant  in  the  morning  and  in  the  evening  if  necessary.
  • apply  fungicide  at  the  first  sign  of  attack   and  remove  and  dispose of  infected  leaves
  • As  it  wind  blown  and  dependent  on  climate  make  sure  that  the  plant  is planted  in  the  right  environment &  that  there  isn’t  any  other  plant  that  is  infected  with  it  near  by .
  • Plant a  species  that  is  immune  to  it  if  possible for  example  Rosa  rogusa  or  aImage


    Rosa Rugosa alba

Cultural Practises

As  Mildew  seem  to  thrive  in  shady   moderate  temperatures ( esp Powdery Mildew)  place  plants  in a sunny  area  with  good  circulation

Avoid  over  feeding  the  plants  with  fertilizer  as  this  will  make  sappy  growth .giving  the  plant  an  over  head  watering  will  wash  of  the  spores  and   kill  them  in  the  soil

Fungicides  applications  

In  severe  cases  when  roses  and  other  woody  plants  are  infected  spraying  with  fungicide  will  be  the  only  alternative.

These  are  classified  as  :-

  • Preventive
  • Eradicator


These  fungicides  are  applied  to  new  growth  before  mildew  has  a  chance  to  get  a  foot  hold.

These  include :-

  • Horticultural  oils  like  neem,jojoba (read  My  article  on  neem  oil  )
  • Powders  like  sulphur , potasium  bicarbonate
  • and  Biological    with  serenade

For Mild to  heavy  infestation  spray  with  the  plants  natural  product  ie  Neem  oil. Becareful  never  to  apply  a  oil   spray  within  2  weeks  of  sulphur  spray  or  it  will  burn  the  leaves.

Also  never  apply  oil  sprays  when  the  temperature  has  reached  90  degrees 



An Organic Sulphur Spray

Copper fungicide

An H&S approved copper fungicide

Sulphur  sprays  have  been  used  for  centuries  and  rather  ironic   that  in  the  days  of  the  smug  plant  diseases   never  appeared  cause  the  sulphur  was  believed  to  keep  it  at  bay

The  best  sulphur  to  buy  are  the  wettable  kind  cause  the  dust  can  be  toxic  to  humans

Copper  Formulations

Although  copper  has  been  used  for ages  as  an  effective  fungicide  when  it  mixed  with  a  another  formulation  like lime it acts a bactericidal thus  killing  off leaf  spot  and  fireblight


Vitax Bordeaux Mixture
(Disolve in Water and use a spray)
Contains Tetra-copper Tricalcium Sulphate

Vitax Bordeaux Mixture should be mixed with water and then applied, without drenching, as a fine spray to both sides of affected foliage.  The actual dilution rates vary from plant to plant and full instructions are provided on the product label.



Contrary  to the  myth  Sodium  Bicarbonate    found  in  Baking  Soda  actually  restricts   fungus  growth  due  to  its  alkalinity &  there  fore  only  useful  as  a  preventive measure.

Also available to licensed applicators only is a fungicide containing potassium bicarbonate (e.g., Kaligreen).

Sprays of potassium bicarbonate can injure the plant, so use these products with caution.overuse should be avoided because of possible negative effects (sodium accumulation and alkaline pH) on the soil

Biological Fungicides

5878321_2 Biological fungicides (e.g., Serenade or UK  Myclobutanil ) are commercially available beneficial microorganisms formulated into a product that, when sprayed on the plant, destroys fungal pathogens. The active ingredient in Serenade is a bacterium, Bacillus subtilis, that helps prevent the powdery mildew from infecting the plant.

Myclobutanil is a triazole chemical used as a fungicide. It is a steroid demethylation inhibitor, specifically inhibiting ergosterol biosynthesis. Ergosterol is a critical component of fungal cell membranes.

These products have some effect in killing the powdery mildew organism but are not as effective as the oils or sulphur in controlling it.