How to Plant & Care for Knock Out Roses


The Knock Out rose is the most hardy and easy-to-care-for rose available. It first was sold in 2000 and has been increasing in popularity since. The Knock Out rose is resistant to almost all diseases, produces a new wave of blooms every five to six weeks, is tolerant of heat and cold, and does not require deadheading. This rose is available in a variety of colors including red, pink and yellow. It grows between 3 and 4 feet tall and is hardy in USDA zones 4 to 9.

Step 1

Dig a planting hole two times the depth and diameter of the Knock Out rose's original container. Mix 2 to 3 inches of organic compost or peat moss with the turned soil.

Step 2

Remove the rose gently from the container. Squeeze the sides of the container lightly until the root ball begins to loosen. Clip off any dead or damaged canes as well as those smaller in diameter than a pencil.

Step 3

Loosen any compacted roots by hand. Place the rose in the planting hole and make sure that the bud union, which is the bumpy bottom part of the stem, is approximately 1 inch above the surface of the soil. Plant the bud union 1 inch beneath the soil in Zone 5 or below for added protection during cold weather.

Step 4

Replace the loosened soil and tamp down well to remove air pockets. Add enough water to moisten the soil very well. Check the soil daily the first two weeks after planting and water when it feels dry.

Step 5

Place a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch around the plant to help seal in moisture and prevent weed growth.

Step 6

Prepare the rose for winter after night temperatures in your region begin to dip to 20 degrees F. Remove all dead leaves and other plant material from around the rose. Create an 8- to 10-inch mound over the crown of the plant using soil from another area of the garden.

Step 7

Prune back to a height of 12 to 18 inches after the last spring frost. Trim the rose regularly to maintain the desired size if you wish.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Organic compost or peat moss
  • Pruning shears
  • Mulch


  • The Conard-Pyle Company: How to Plant a Knock Out Rose
  • Texas A&M University: Knock Out Rose
  • Colorado State University: Roses - Winter Care
  • Floridata: Rosa Radrazz
Keywords: knock out roses, plant roses, grow roses, plant knockout roses

About this Author

Annita Lawson has been working as a freelance writer since 2004. Her work has been published in various web and print outlets, including The Dabbling Mum, A Virtuous Woman, and Pediatrics for Parents. Lawson is pursuing an Associate of Arts degree at Southeast Kentucky Community College. She enjoys sharing all that she has learned about parenting, healthy eating and living a frugal lifestyle.