Tips for a flourishing rose garden
The team behind the stunning gardens at New Farm Park, Brisbane City Council, has shared some of their top gardening tips for taking care of roses.
Pruning is important to remove any damaged, diseased or weak parts of the plant.
Pruning also allows good airflow and light to the plants which is important particularly in Brisbane’s sub-tropical climate.
The best time to prune roses is in June/July to prepare them for flowering in Spring.
You can encourage repeat flowering by regularly removing dead flowers.
Roses require sunny and open positions – the more sun and air movement, the better the flowering and plant health.
Fertilise with a good quality rose fertiliser. There are a range of projects available from your local plant nursery and they can recommend a product for your particular conditions.
Mulching is important to conserve moisture – while roses are hardy, they do prefer well drained but constantly moist soils. Sugarcane or lucerne mulch are readily available from plant nurseries and landscape suppliers, as is longer lasting bark mulch from landscape suppliers.
Water regularly during the growing season – from mid/late winter right through to autumn with deep watering once a week.
When watering, keep the foliage dry if possible, especially at night – as this reduces the change of fungal diseases developing on leaves.
Keep an eye for pests such as aphids, scale and spider mite and take action if present – your local plant nursery can make recommendations to treat any issues.
However, many residents that grow roses know that bees and pollinators love roses too and also that leaf-cutter bees harvest rose leaves and use them to build their homes – you can see the semi-circles cut out of the leaves, so be mindful of pest treatments that could also harms pollinators.
If you are wanting to get your hands on some roses out of season, opt for some potted roses or bare rooted roses. These will have a better chance of surviving through the hot summer months than growing something from a seedling.
At New Farm Park, we used locally-supplied mulch from Centenary Landscaping Supplies.
This is a mulch consisting of aged green waste ranging in size and makeup from fine through to chunky.
We use this mulch as an economical way to provide an organic based mulching solution that provides good moisture retention in the garden beds, adds organic matter to the soil as this product breaks down, balanced against longevity and maintenance of the mulch.
However, any organic mulch (aged forest mulch, sugar cane, lucerne etc.,) can be used by home gardeners for growing roses to conserve moisture, whilst adding organic material to the soil.
For those wanting further information, council libraries offer a number of books on roses and rose care.