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How to Plant a Rose Tree

By Bridget Kelly ; Updated September 21, 2017

Tree roses, or rose standards as they are commonly known, are specially propagated rose plants. The rose bush is grafted onto a cane, usually 32 to 36 inches tall. Any class of rose can be grafted onto a cane, including hybrid teas and floribundas. If you are planting more than one rose tree, plant them at least 3 feet apart. This will not only give them room to spread out, but the air circulation necessary to help ward off fungal diseases.

Choose an area of the garden that gets at least five hours of sun a day.

Place the rose tree in a bucket of water.

Dig up the planting area, to a depth of at least 6 inches, with a garden hoe, breaking up any large clods of dirt and removing any rocks or other debris.

Add a 2-inch layer of compost and 1/2 cup of bone meal to the existing soil and mix it in well.

Dig a hole, 6 inches deep and twice the width of the container in which the plant was growing. If it is bare-root, dig the width of the hole 18 inches square.

Drive a stake into the planting hole to a depth of 2 feet.

Place the rose tree in the planting hole next to the stake and secure it to the stake.

Spread the roots evenly over the bottom of the hole. If there is not enough room for the roots to spread out, remove the rose tree and widen the hole. Don’t wind the roots around so that they will fit into the hole. Make sure that the hole is deep enough so that the graft union (the slightly swollen area on the trunk where the bud was grafted) is 1 inch below the soil.

Backfill the hole with the amended soil, packing it around the roots with your feet, as you go, to remove any air pockets. When the hole is filled, pack it well, again.

Add a 3-inch layer of mulch around the base of the rose tree, extending 18 inches out from the trunk. Water well.


Things You Will Need

  • Bucket
  • Gardening fork
  • Compost
  • Bone meal
  • Shovel
  • Stake, or tree stake kit
  • Mulch

About the Author


Based in the American Southwest, Bridget Kelly has been writing about gardening and real estate since 2005. Her articles have appeared at Trulia.com, SFGate.com, GardenGuides.com, RE/MAX.com, MarketLeader.com, RealEstate.com, USAToday.com and in "Chicago Agent" magazine, to name a few. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English with a concentration in creative writing.