Care for Rose Bushes


The rose is a perennial flower that comes in a wide variety of colors from yellow to pink and red. The plant produces a fruit, called rose hips, that matures in late summer and early fall. Most varieties in the United States are deciduous, which means they die down in the winter. The slender branches of most roses have sharp thorns. Roses are known for their display of color and fragrance and can grow as tall as 6 feet in height. Depending on the variety, these flowers can require a lot of care in order to thrive.

Step 1

Water your roses for approximately 30 minutes three to four times a week. The plants should get at least 1 to 2 inches of water for best results. Water your flowers early in the morning so that the sun will have time to dry the leaves before cooler temperatures come at night. Watering in the morning will help prevent disease and mildew.

Step 2

Apply a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch at the base of the plant. This will help keep out weeds and keep moisture in. Mulch also helps to keep the soil cool.

Step 3

Prune your roses early in the spring when you begin to see new growth. The new branches will look like red buds forming on your rose bushes. Trim away any damaged or diseased stems and leave approximately four to five healthy branches. Stems should be cut just above an outward growing bud to allow for a well-shaped rose bush, according to University of Illinois Extension. Use sharp scissors or sharp pruning sheers and make the cut at a 45 degree angle.

Step 4

Fertilize your roses with all-purpose granulated fertilizer early in the spring after the first leaves begin to appear. Apply fertilizer after each flush of bloom during the growing season and stop fertilizing two months before the anticipated first frost, according to grower's organization All-American Rose Selections.

Step 5

Spray pesticides on your roses if you begin to see insects. Insecticidal soap is a good choice for roses. Read and follow all directions on your insecticide bottle. The amount you apply will depend on the size and number of roses you are treating.

Things You'll Need

  • Mulch
  • Rose fertilizer
  • Pruning snips
  • Insecticidal soap


  • University of Illinois Extension: Caring for Roses
  • All-American Rose Selections: Rose Care
Keywords: caring for roses, growing roses, rose bush care

About this Author

Melanie Hammontree is a member of the Society for Professional Journalists and has been writing since 2004. Works include publications with "Hall County Crime Examiner," "Player's Press" and "The Gainesville Times." Hammontree has a Master of Business and is working on a Master of Journalism from the University of Tennessee.