Climbing rose bushes are majestic plants most loved for their scent and variety of colors that range from white to purple and every color in between. Learn a few tips on climbing rose bushes and grow a stunning addition for your fence or garden trellis.
Planting Climbing Rose Bushes
After the last spring frost, plant your rose bush in a sunny area. Climbing rose bushes need at least six hours of direct sunlight each day. When choosing a location, keep in mind that this type of rose bush spreads expansively and will need to be planted where it has plenty of room to grow. Plant the rose bush in soil with good drainage and avoid clay dirt, which tends to hold moisture near the roots. Fertilize the rose bush at planting. Any fertilizer that has been approved for use on roses will do the trick, but only fertilize at half strength. To dilute it, mix equal parts water and fertilizer in a bucket and stir before adding it to the rose bush. Once the rose is planted, place the trellis behind it. If you want the rose bush to climb a wall, fence, or other structure, plant the bush in the desired location with several inches between the rose and the structure. Avoid pushing the rose bush against the structure because the roots are fragile and could be damaged. Once the rose is in the desired location, attach the stems to the structure or trellis using floral wire or some type of flexible twine. This helps the rose to climb.
Caring for Climbing Rose Bushes
Once the rose bush is planted, mulch around the base of it. Mulching does a number of things for the rose. It supports the plant and creates a moisture barrier to keep the roots damp. Mulch also provides stability for the rose bush as it settles into its location. Water your rose every other day for the first month after planting, preferably in the morning. This frequent watering helps the roots sink deeply into the soil and helps make the plant drought hardy. After the first month, watering can be decreased to about three times a week. Avoid the rose petals and leaves when watering. Watering is only beneficial to the plant when it reaches the roots. Treat the rose bush monthly with a plant food designed for roses. Apply the plant food according to the manufacturer's directions. Climbing rose bushes need to be deadheaded, which is the removal of dead blossoms. Keep the base of the rose bush free of debris to discourage pests from attacking the plant. Prune unhealthy branches to encourage new growth.
Once the cooler weather of fall begins to arrive, climbing rose bushes naturally become dormant. They stop blooming, begin to lose their foliage, and begin producing seed pods called hips. When the first frost comes, water the rose bush thoroughly. This will be the last watering for the winter season. Place mulch around the base of the bush to form a protective barrier against the winter cold. Gently tie the branches of the rose bush together with twine. This will support them against windy winter days.