From a single rose plant in the landscape to a lavish garden, roses are a flower every gardener likes. The rose lover has lots of choices for scented or unscented, hardy or tender, and bloom colors from pastel yellow and pinks to deep reds and even near-black. Establishing a rose garden maintenance routine can lead to spectacular and healthy roses.
Water roses every seven days if there is no rainfall. Roses need lots of water to stay healthy, so water deeply. The area where roses are planted should be well drained so roots are not standing in water, which could lead to root rot. To help prevent the growth of mildew or disease, avoid getting water on the leaves--water the soil only--and water in the morning so the surface moisture has time to soak into the soil. Drip irrigation is an option.
Fertilize in the spring with a commercial product designed specifically for roses. Follow the manufacturer's instructions, which may include fertilizing every two weeks through the growing season.
Apply 2 to 4 inches of organic mulch, like leaf mold, compost or pine straw. Organic mulch has several advantages including holding in moisture, retarding weed growth and adding nutrients to the soil. Check the thickness of the mulch each spring and fall and replenish or replace if needed.
Prune roses to shape the plant or to remove spent blooms. When to prune depends on the type of rose. In general, prune once-blooming roses after they bloom. Most other roses should be pruned in late winter. Pruning may include cutting back up to half the length of old cane, cutting out diseased or damaged cane and cutting out tiny canes.
Pest and Disease
Purchase a fungicide spray for roses and apply according to the manufacturer's instructions. A fungicide can be used to help control black spot and powdery mildew, two common threats to roses. In many cases, bugs or other disease threats can be pruned off. Dispose of the cuttings. Wipe the pruners between each cut with a bleach and water solution to avoid recontamination.