Wednesday, February 22, 2012

February Rose Care - Especially in Pots!

Posted By on Wed, Feb 22, 2012 at 9:06 AM

Mini Roses in Whiskey Barrels
  • Photo by Marylee, The Contained Gardener
  • Mini Roses in Whiskey Barrels

Pruning of your roses should be completed by mid-February. Once you're done pruning, be sure to clean up all the old mulch and dead leaves and throw them in the trash, not your compost pile. Dead leaves can often have mildew spores and other diseases on them that can infest your compost pile and create problems later on.

Pests and Disease Prevention:
Apply both a pesticide and a fungicide to your pruned roses and the ground around the plants. Fungus spores such as mildew can live through the winter in your soil. Follow the directions on the containers.

Apply long-term or organic fertilizer, such as Max Magic Mix, Bandini Rose Food or homemade compost.
Add ½ cup superphosphate at this time since it takes a while to break down.
Add ¼ cup of Epsom salts to each plant
Scratch all applications into the soil and water in.

Two weeks following the long-term fertilizing, begin your regular short-term or liquid fertilizing program using a water soluble fertilizer such as Miracle Grow, Peter's, Schultz or other popular brands. Mix the powder in a spray applicator or bucket according to the directions on the fertilizer container. Water the soil with this solution until water freely runs through the pot. Apply this application to potted roses every two weeks through May.

Continue to water your potted roses every three to four days depending on the size of the pot. Be sure your are watering the pot deeply, as evidenced by the water coming out the drainage hole. As temperatures rise, increase your watering frequency.

Once growth appears, begin a daily water spray of your roses to keep the aphids and mildew away. This is best done in the morning while you enjoy your cup of coffee or tea.

For more information on potted gardens in the desert, visit The Contained Gardener. Have a question? Email Marylee.

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