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How to Grow a Rose Tree

Roses do not naturally grow as trees. Rose trees (rose standards) are the result of grafting and training rose bushes to grow from a central cane. Extra care needs to be taken with rose trees because they are susceptible to breakage from heavy winds. When growing rose trees in colder areas, the trees either need to be grown in containers and brought in during the winter or the bare cane needs to be protected from the cold. Rose trees also have the same nutrient and watering requirements as typical rose bushes or climbing roses. They need a well-drained, nitrogen-rich soil.

Planting Your Rose Tree

Dig a hole in the desired sunny location for your rose tree. The hole should be at least 1 foot deep and 18 inches wide.

Mix the native soil, blood meal, aged manure and compost together. The ratio of the mix should be 1:½ :1:1.

Carefully place the rose tree into the hole. Fill in the hole with the soil mixture. Lightly tamp the soil around the base of the rose tree.

Place mulch around the base of the rose tree. Water thoroughly. The rose tree has had enough water when you notice pooling.

Use the hammer to pound tree stakes on opposite sides of the rose tree. Tie one end of the nylon rope to one tree stake, and wrap it once around the cane (trunk) of the rose tree. Pull the rope until it's snug but do not bend the rose tree. Bring the opposite end back to the tree stake and cut the nylon rope, leaving 6 extra inches for tying to the stake. Repeat this with the other tree stake so that you have two pieces of nylon rope on each side of the cane.

Slide one piece of rubber tubing onto each piece of nylon rope. The rubber tubing should go approximately halfway up the rope and rest against the rose tree's cane. This is to protect the cane from damages caused by the rope. Tie the loose ends of the rope to their respective tree stake, making sure to pull the rope snugly against the cane.

Care of Your Rose Tree

Water your rose trees in the morning, soaking the ground thoroughly. During the growing season, early spring until late fall, water two to three mornings per week. Water once per month during the winter.

Fertilize rose trees on a regular basis. Start with an initial fertilization in early spring as new growth appears. Fertilize again after each wave of blooms. Stop fertilizing two months before the first expected frost.

Prune rose trees regularly. The first pruning should be done during late winter to shape your rose tree. Prune again late spring to remove any dead branches. Periodically prune the rose tree throughout the growing season to remove damaged and broken branches. Cut branches close to the main stems.

Encircle the cane of the rose tree with wire mesh. The cane should be centered and 8 inches from the sides of the wire mesh. Fill the wire mesh with mulch to protect the cane from damage during the winter.

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