How to Set Up a Rose Garden


There are 48 different classifications of roses, according to the Colorado State University Extension and the American Rose Society. Although the rose plant is widely cultivated, and the varieties diverse, most roses grow well under specific conditions. Choosing the correct site for your rose garden, and preparing the soil in the correct manner, is vital for the long-term health of the rose garden and ensures your rose plants will continue to grow year after year.

Step 1

Locate an area in your garden that gets full sunlight and good air circulation, says the University of Illinois Extension. Roses require at least 6 hours of sunlight a day, so a southerly facing portion of the garden is best.

Step 2

Test the soil of your garden using a home pH testing kit or by sending samples of your site's soil to a local university extension service. Home pH kits, or the instructions from local university testing labs, will help you determine the amount of fertilizer required in your garden. Roses require a pH level between 6.0 and 7.0, reports the University of Illinois.

Step 3

Add organic matter to the soil to improve drainage and fertility. Add 3 to 6 inches of organic compost, leaves or grass clippings to the top of sandy and clay soil; till the material to mix, advises the University of Minnesota Extension.

Step 4

Add 1/2 lb. of superphosphate to your garden for every bushel of organic matter added, suggests the University of Illinois Extension.

Tips and Warnings

  • Avoid planting a rose garden in an area where the flowers will compete with trees or other plants for nutrients, the Colorado State University Extension recommends.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Organic matter
  • Home pH testing kit


  • Colorado State University Extension: Selecting and Planting Roses
  • University of Illinois Extension: Site Selection and Bed Preparation
  • University of Minnesota: Amending Soils for Perennial Beds
Keywords: rose garden preparation, rose garden, raising roses

About this Author

Cleveland Van Cecil is a freelancer writer specializing in technology. He has been a freelance writer for three years and has published extensively on, writing articles on subjects as diverse as boat motors and hydroponic gardening. Van Cecil has a Bachelor of Arts in liberal arts from Baldwin-Wallace College.