Introduction to Growing Roses Roses for Pleasure
I was just wondering why gardeners are so fascinated by roses, that they want some rose shrubs in their garden. Well, there is historical and mythological precedent for the popularity of roses.
In ancient and classical times, the rose was considered to be a symbol of love and Aphrodite was always seen surrounded by roses in her temples. Red and pink in Spanish, French, Italian, Greek, Romanian and Portuguese is always symbolized with the word “rose”.
Many countries, like England, USA and Catalonia and cities like Islamabad, Alberta, Oregon, and states like New York, and Iowa consider the rose to be their official or unofficial symbol.
As hybridization of roses is an easy process, 160 species grew up into 6000 species of roses of cultivars and hybrids in the famous Malmaison gardens of the Empress Josephine in the 1800s. Even during wartime, her gardeners were allowed to travel anywhere when on rose duty.
Since ancient times, roses were used not only to beautify gardens, but also used in cooking and in beauty treatments. Rose oil, and rose petals were used as essential oils to beautify oneself, by almost everybody in ancient civilizations.
This book is for all those experienced gardeners, and even newbies who want to know all about growing roses easily in your garden.
How To Grow Roses
Types and Varieties of Roses
Roses are deciduous, but there are species which are evergreen. The colors range from white, pink, Crimson, red, yellow and Amber to any hybrid color imagined. You also have dark colored roses, which are purplish – black. Natural roses in the wild are pollinated by insects.
The Rose Berry is known as the Rose hip. It is normally used in jams, and jellies. These rose hips are normally found in wild roses, because many cultivated hybrids do not produce them. There are some rose species, which have thorns, but without any sharp tips. The thorns of roses are defensive mechanisms, because after all roses originated as wild plants millenniums ago.
So if you want to grow roses in your garden, you can plant them anytime as long as the ground is not covered with frost. If you want to grow them in pots, you can plant them throughout the year.
Empress Josephine’s gardeners managed to grow rose plants from seeds, in her world-famous Malmaison. But nowadays it is much better to grow roses from cuttings. These ornamental plants are going to add the distinct touch of class to your garden or to your home, indoors. Some varieties are used for landscaping and some as borders to flowerbeds.
Ornamental roses mostly consist of hybrid varieties for their flowers. They do not have distinct scents as the roses grown in the wild. However, Rosa Glauca , hybrid teas, Floribundas Papa meilland , Benson and Hedges Gold, Susan Hampshire, Lady Sylvia, Silver Lining and other hybrid varieties have a very attractive foliage and are also heavily scented.
When planning a bed of roses, decide first on the height of the bushes and make your choice. You can get hybrids ranging from 18 inches to 36 inches plus and you can also overshadow 18 inch bushes by taller varieties of roses to make a pleasant contrast.
Other Types of Roses
These are popular rose varieties, which include Multifloras, Climbing Polyanthas , and Wichuriaanas. These when newly planted should be pruned back to 7 or 8 buds. Cut out all the weak growths altogether. It is true that by pruning in this way you are going to sacrifice bloom for the first season, but you are going to get good strong growths that are going to bloom profusely in the following year, in consequence.
In the following season make certain to cut out the shoots that have bloomed. The new growths made that season are then tied up in their place.
The most popular rambler varieties are American Pillar – dark pink –, Lady Gay – Cherry pink, Sanders – white – Dorothy Perkins – double pink –, Dr. Van Fleet – flesh toned pink –, Paul’s Scarlet Climber – vivid Scarlet – and so on.
If you are using these plans for bedding, you can cut them quite hard, every year. All you need to do is cut away all the old flower stems, every March and then you thin out the old wood. This pruning system also applies to dwarf Polyanthas.
Some of the most popular varieties available here are Gloria Mundi, Karen Poulsen, Ideal, Else Poulsen, and Coral Cluster.
These are excellent for town and country gardens and they grow well in most soils.
Dwarf Polyanthas include Yellow Hammer, Coral Cluster, Little Dorrit, Ideal and Paul Crampel.
General Management of Rose Plants
Keep the rose beds hoed well throughout the summer. Mulch the bushes before the hot weather sets in, and water them by giving them a good soaking, if you feel the soil is too dry.
Never mulch roses with dung in the late autumn. This is going to keep the bed cold and wet. For autumn and winter protection, use plain straw cut off all the blooms directly, they start to fade. Dying roses on your rosebush just keep taking all the extra nutrients which are needed by just blooming buds.
Never allow seedpods to form. If you do not want these flowers for decoration, there is no need why you should ruin the looks of the bushes by leaving them on the plant to seed.
If you make up your mind to cut these roses with nice long stems during the month of June and July, you are going to get good rose blooms during the month of September.
Too many flowers on one stalk means not all the blooms are going to bloom to their full potential.
If you are growing varieties that produce a good and firm bloom, disbud them so as to leave just one flower bud to swell and develop on a shoot. Do this, disbudding early and do not leave it until the color of the rose starts to show. The best time to do this is when your buds are smaller than peas.
This book has introduced you to roses and how you can grow them easily in your garden. Remember that growing any sort of plant either outdoors in your garden or indoors in a hot is a very positive experience. That is because you have achieved something visible, and which is going to be well appreciated by people visiting your garden.
You may also want to look at another of our publications – The Magic of Roses – to get more information about this very popular flower.
Roses are here to stay, so say it with roses, especially when you have grown them yourself in your own garden.
It is a well-known fact that during the 2nd World War, when England was supposed to be in dire straits, especially during the Battle of Britain, Winston Churchill used to disappear for some time after important meetings. He went straight into his rose garden, spend some time there, and came back refreshed and with new ideas on how to protect his land from invasion.
But then he was following in the footsteps of all those people who know that true inspiration is only obtained in the lap of mother nature in the fresh air and in the sun.
So start making your own little Rose Garden today, Live Long and Prosper!