How to Relocate a Rose Bush


Roses are a favorite plant of homeowners and landscapers, adding beauty and fragrance to yards and garden beds. But sometimes, as landscape needs change, you might have to move your rosebush from one area of the yard to another. Roses don't always take well to transplanting, but if you follow a few specific instructions, your rose bush will have a much better chance of becoming adjusted to its new location.

Step 1

Plan to transplant your rose bush during a dormant phase, such as late fall or early spring. Select a new site that gets a lot of sun and has moist soil that drains well.

Step 2

Water your rose bush two days before relocating it. Even if you have been watering it regularly, make a point to water it a little extra, making sure the ground is thoroughly moist, but not soaking wet. Do this two days in a row.

Step 3

Prepare the new rose bush location before you dig it from its current location. Make the new hole at least 15 inches deep and a foot wide. Once the hole is dug, make a mound of dirt in the center of the hole by filling it back in with some soil, mixing 1/2 cup of bone meal in with the mounded soil while you are doing it.

Step 4

Prune back the rose bush to at least half its size. This will help conserve the nutrients it needs to adjust to its new location.

Step 5

Dig up the rose bush, making sure to dig at least 12 inches out from the base of the bush and 15 inches deep to get as much as the root system as possible.

Step 6

Lift the bush out of its location and immediately take it, dirt and all, to the new hole. Spread the roots out as much as possible and drape them over the mound in the new hole.

Step 7

Put half of the remaining soil into the hole, then fill the hole with water and allow it to drain. Once it has drained, fill more soil into the hole and make sure you fill in any gaps around the roots. Press down the soil firmly when you finish filling the hole.

Step 8

Water the rose bush daily for six weeks, which is how long it will take for the roots to begin to spread again.

Tips and Warnings

  • Failure to water the rose bush enough can result in it dying.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Bone meal
  • Water


  • Gardening Know How: How To Transplant Roses

Who Can Help

  • North Dakota State University Extension: Questions on Roses
Keywords: moving rose bushes, relocating rose bushes, transplanting roses

About this Author

A freelance writer for more than 12 years, Traci Vandermark has written extensively on health and fitness topics. She is a student of health, fitness and nutrition at the International Institute Of Holistic Healing, certified by the American Association of Nutritional Consultants. Her articles have appeared in Catskill Country Magazine, The Lookout Magazine, Capper's, Birds and Blooms and Country Discoveries, to name a few.