How to Plant Rose Bushes From Your Dead Roses


Roses are the most popular flowers of all and can be grown just about anywhere in the U.S., says Monmouth County (N.J.) Agricultural Agent Richard G. Obal. There are hundreds of varieties to choose from. Gardeners are developing new ones every year, so it is no surprise that the rose is our national flower. Start your own rose bushes from cut roses by following a few steps.

Step 1

Cut off the spent flower to the just above the first set of healthy leaves. Trim about 1/4 of an inch off of the bottom of the cut rose stem at a 45-degree angle, leaving a stem that's about 8 inches long.

Step 2

Remove any leaves from the bottom 3 inches of the cutting. Submerge the whole piece into cool water. Ensure that the cut rose section never dries out.

Step 3

Fill the rooting pot it with a mixture of 3 equal parts of sand, perlite and humus. Sprinkle it until water drains from the bottom of the pot. Poke a hole into the soil about 3 inches deep with the back of a pencil or the handle of a wooden spoon.

Step 4

Dip the bottom end of the rose cutting into rooting hormone powder. Tap it lightly to remove the excess. Set it about halfway into the prepared hole. Press the soil in around the stem. Sprinkle again with water.

Step 5

Set the whole pot into a plastic bag to form a humid environment. Place it in a sunny spot with indirect sunlight for the next six weeks. Remove the plastic bag when growth in the form of leaf buds appears.

Step 6

Grow the new cutting in a sunny spot for the next year, keeping the soil moist while the root system develops.

Step 7

Remove it from the pot in the fall. Place it in its permanent position before the cold of winter. Keep soil around the roots and set it about 1/2 of an inch deeper into the soil than it was in the pot. Press the soil firmly around the rose bush with the heel of a shoe.

Step 8

Prune, fertilize and mulch in the spring as required with any other rose.

Things You'll Need

  • Cut roses
  • Pruning shears
  • Rooting hormone powder
  • Potting soil (sand, peat moss, humus)
  • 6-inch planting pot
  • Screen
  • Gravel


  • Rutgers University: Roses and Their Care (PDF)
  • Texas A & M University: Rose Propagation by Cuttings
Keywords: Rooting cut roses, Planting dead roses, Growing cut roses

About this Author

Based in Maryland, Heidi Braley, currently writes for local and online media outlets. Some of Braley's articles from the last 10 years are in the "Oley Newsletter," "Connections Magazine," GardenGuides and Braley's college life included Penn State University and Villanova University with her passions centered in nutrition and botany.