Roses are synonymous with love and gardening! Rose enthusiasts are a discerning bunch –some gardeners go for conventional growing and some go the more organic route, but neither is right nor wrong.
At Van Wilgen’s we want you to have beautiful roses and with a little TLC they are not as hard to maintain as their reputation may suggest. Here are a few tips and tricks from the Van Wilgen’s team:
- The most important thing with roses is to plant them in full sun. Roses like to bask in the sun and not in a place where they’ll get wet. They only need to be watered every third day or so – let them dry out well in between – and make sure they aren’t near a downspout or boggy spot but one that is well-drained.
- To get your roses started put down some fresh Van Wilgen’s Mulch (available in both bulk and bags!). Apply a 3” layer of mulch around roses to keep moisture in and keep weeds at bay. You’ll just want to keep mulch three inches from the canes of the rose. You’ll also want to fertilize your roses monthly using a slow-release fertilizer, such as Espoma’s Rose-Tone until about September.
- As you start to see blooms, it’s important to “deadhead” them as the flowers die in order to encourage them to re-bloom.
- Animals and insect pests can affect the flowers. If you have a known problem in your yard, control products, as well as deer and/or vole repellents, can be used preemptively. Additionally, as the season progresses, if new disease or insect problems arise, we have a full lineup of products that can treat these issues.
Stop by or give us a call and we’ll be happy to help you identify the issue your roses are facing and find you the right solution!
Out in the yard, roses are starting to arrive and are ready for planting! We’ve been getting lots of questions from you all, asking about rose care, and we’re here to help! Roses often get a bad reputation as being tricky, but they’re often much simpler than you’d think.
The most important thing with roses is to plant them in full sun. Roses want to bake, so make sure they’re in a good and sunny spot and not in a place where they’ll get wet. They only need to be watered every third day or so – let them dry out well in between – and make sure they aren’t near a downspout or boggy spot but rather one that is well-drained.
To get your roses started off right, put down some fresh Van Wilgen’s Mulch (available in both bulk and bags!). Apply a three-inch layer of mulch around roses to keep moisture in and keep weeds at bay. You’ll just want to keep mulch three inches from the canes of the rose. You’ll also want to fertilize your roses monthly using a slow-release fertilizer, such as Espoma’s Rose-Tone until about September.
As you start to see blooms, it’s important to deadhead them as the flowers die in order to encourage them to re-bloom.
If you have a known insect or critter problem in your yard, insect control products, as well as deer and/or vole repellents, can be used preemptively. Additionally, as the season progresses, if new disease or insect problems arise, we have a full lineup of products that can treat these issues. Stop by or give us a call and we’ll be happy to help you identify the issue your roses are facing and find you the right solution!
With a little patience and TLC, you’re sure to have beautiful roses that thrive!
Roses need a little TLC. I know Van Wilgen’s gardeners are dedicated to giving their plants the very best care and we at Van Wilgen’s are here to help. Let’s start at the very beginning, from the day you bring your new, thorny family member home from Van Wilgen’s. Everyone works hard to keep our roses in tip-top shape so they go happily from our garden to your garden.
TLC Tip #1: Water! Container roses here at Van Wilgen’s are watered every day. You need to do the same, especially if you cannot plant your new rose right away. Once roses are planted in the ground, you need to continue watering. 3X’s per week is a good rule of thumb. Set your hose or soaker hose at the base of the rose at a slow trickle. This will give your roses a deep root soaking. Slow & steady wins the race in the case of watering.
TLC Tip #2: Plant! Plant your rose with Jump Start. Jump Start is an excellent root stimulant. Mixed with water and poured all over the root ball, the high phosphorus and B vitamins in Jump Start push root growth to help your rose establish itself more rapidly and reduce transplant shock. Amend your soil with Van Wilgen’s Premium Planting Mix and we will warranty your rose for 1 year.
TLC Tip #3: Fertilize! Approximately one week after planting your new rose plant, follow up with Rose-Tone by Espoma. It provides your roses with an organic, slow-release feed, they will gobble up. Continue to feed your beautiful roses every month through September.
TLC Tip #4: Mulch! Mulch is marvelous for roses. It helps hold in precious moisture that roses need and keeps weeds from stealing the rose’s nutrients but don’t put the mulch right up to the canes. Give them a little breathing room.
TLC Tip #5: Be Proactive! Bayer All-in-One Rose & Flower Care is the perfect product to use if you want to get ahead of the game. Apply this systemic product to the soil at the base of your roses once every month. It protects your precious roses from diseases such as black spot & powdery mildew, insects such as Japanese beetles & Aphids, and it gives a little burst of fertilizer. Customers love this product and your roses do too.
TLC Tip #6: If you must be reactive…We have many great insect controls and fungicides to take care of common rose problems such as Rose Sawfly & Black Spot. We have great conventional products like Bayer 3-in-1 Insect, Disease & Mite Control. This will knock out Sawfly & Black Spot in one. Copper Fungicide & End All will also be of great help for organic gardeners.
TLC Tip #6: Clean Up! Dead head spent blooms, remove dead canes down to the ground, trim off damaged canes, and remove sucker growth. Keeping your roses cleaned up throughout the season, will keep them energized and healthy.
TLC Tip #7: Prune! The best time to prune roses is in the early spring. Leave approximately 18 inches of canes when cutting back. Cut about ¼ inch above the bud eye (reddish or brownish bump on a cane).
TLC Tip #8: Love! Talk to your roses. Tell them how much you love them. Thank them for all the beauty they provide you. Give your rose a kiss. “Oh, stop it! Don’t think of me as weird. I know you all do this when no one is looking!”
The Knockout family of roses was introduced in the early 2000’s by Star roses and has since become a staple of sunny borders across the country. These plants were bred to simplify rose gardening. And, wow what a success! The traditional rose “rule book” was completely thrown out of the window with the introduction of these shrub roses. These are not Grandma’s roses! Requiring minimal maintenance, these roses grace our mixed borders and foundation plantings with an almost non-stop show of color from Spring until a hard frost. Extremely cold hardy, disease, and pest resistant, and incredibly floriferous, these plants truly have become the “king” of the rose ring!
These bulletproof roses come in seven colors ranging from red/pink to creamy yellow/white. The pink/red varieties also come in a double petal version. The natural proclivity of these roses is to form a shrub in the 4’x4’ size range, but smaller sizes are easily maintained with simple pruning. Again, no need to worry about traditional rose pruning rules here. Just cut them down to the desired size in late winter/early spring while the plant is still dormant. I, myself cut them down to approximately 6” above the ground every season! Did I mention how tough these roses are? For those who want them a little larger, just prune off about one-third of the plant every season, retaining a nice rounded shape.
For best flowering, it is ideal to feed your roses with a complete fertilizer made specifically for roses. There are many wonderful brands to choose from. Come see us here at Van Wilgen’s to get the one that is best suited for your situation. Ideally, they should be fed after each flowering cycle. This is the time in between the flowers starting to fade and the formation of new flower buds for the next “round” of blooms. At the very least, I would recommend feeding your roses in Spring and Fall while you are fertilizing your other shrubs and perennials in the garden. I personally like the addition of compost as a top dressing. Not only will this feed your roses, but it will also eventually break down and improve the garden’s soil. Of course, the removal of any spent (dead) flowers will help to promote the formation of new buds, but with the Knockout series of roses, this is not a necessary step. These roses are self-cleaning!
It is easy to see why these roses have become so popular. With sunshine, water, and minimal maintenance they put on a show that is almost unrivaled in the garden. Because of their hardy nature and ease of care, they really have become a go-to plant for beginner and experienced gardeners alike. Fall is a fantastic time to plant new material and to take advantage of our end-of-season sales. The perfect opportunity to try this outstanding line of roses or to add to your existing collection. We would be more than happy to answer any questions or help in any way necessary. We look forward to seeing you soon!
Winter is coming- not just for Game of Thrones, but for your garden too. And like many people at the first sign of cold, you’re off and ready to prepare for the worst of it- raking, mulching, composting, and of course, pruning, right? Well, hold on just a second.
While cutting back your perennials after the first frost and cleaning up your vegetable garden are certainly recommended right now, try to fight the urge to fire up hedge trimmers and oil up your pruners in anticipation of a good fall trim. Most summer flowering plants, like roses, panicled hydrangeas, rose of Sharon, and others, much prefer to be left alone for the coming winter and cleaned up in the early spring. Even your ornamental grasses would much rather be left alone for the winter and pruned in the spring. By leaving these plants alone, you allow any winter damage to occur at the tops of the plants, where you would be pruning it out anyway, instead of much deeper in the plant, where it will take longer to recover.
But when exactly should you prune? Spring flowering shrubs like azaleas, lilac, and rhododendron should be pruned after flower and before the fourth of July, whereas summer flowering shrubs, roses, and grasses should be left alone until late winter or early, early spring. Any evergreens can be pruned in mid-spring after the plants have begun to flush lush new growth.
Winter is coming- make yourself a drink and stay warm. Your plants will thank you in the spring.
Do you love roses but are stuck with limited space? Is your rose collection growing faster than your raised beds?
Container roses are a great solution for gardeners short on space or those who want the freedom to move their roses around. They give you the option of having roses wherever you want them.
So whether you are trying to cover up some unsightly spot or wanting sweet-smelling roses near your front door, we’re here to help you figure out the best roses for you.
Depending on the size and structure of your container, most roses won’t be a problem. Just be sure the container can hold the roots and soil needed for your roses. Be sure to choose roses recommended for your USDA Hardiness Zone.
Best Types of Roses for Containers
Miniature Roses – Don’t let the name fool you — these roses may be small in bloom size but still produce radiant color. Miniature refers to the size of the bloom, not the size of the bush. Typically they grow between 12”-18”, depending on growing conditions. These roses also love to hang out in window boxes. Choose a container that is at least 10” deep.
Small Roses – These low-growing roses help show off gorgeous containers. Small roses usually reach up to 2’. The variety of small roses is expansive and offers different styles, colors, and smells to keep your garden rocking. Due to their small stature, they are perfect for the urban gardener — use these to spruce up your balcony or front stoop. Choose a container that is at least 12” deep.
Patio Roses – With big, colorful, and robust blooms, you cannot go wrong with patio roses. They have a neat, bushy growth and regularly blooming rosette flowers. Choose a container that is at least 12” deep.
Floribundas – These one-of-a-kind hybrid roses have vibrant, colorful blooms that will dress up your yard. Grown in clusters, floribundas are wonderful to keep your guests in awe. They require a little more breathing room, so make sure to pick a larger container to keep them comfortable. Choose a container that is at least 15” deep.
6 Steps to Planting Your Rose Bush in a Container
- Select a container with drainage holes. The taller the containers the better since roses are deep-rooted.
- Fill container one-third of the way with Espoma’s organic potting mix.
- Take the rose out of the pot and gently loosen its roots.
- Add 3 cups of Espoma’s Rose-tone to the soil and mix thoroughly.
- Place the rose in the soil no deeper than it was growing in the container. Planting depth should be such that the graft knuckle is just below the soil level. Add more potting mix to the container and level out the soil.
- Water thoroughly.
Customers routinely ask me for something that blooms all summer long
with low maintenance. I usually push colorful annuals or long-blooming
perennials. But what to suggest to folks who want to plant something
and walk away? I suggest my “go-to plant” for full sun: the Knockout
series of roses! Eyes go wide when I suggest roses. “Aren’t roses a
lot of work?” In the case of Knockouts, these roses really aren’t!
Star Roses have changed how we view and grow roses!
Culture is simple, like true roses they love full sun. The more sun,
the better the blooming! Keep them adequately watered and fed and you
will get a flower display that rivals geraniums! Rose-Tone works
wonders! Deadheading spent blooms and rose hips isn’t even necessary!
I like to think of the single varieties as self-cleaning as the petals
drop on their own. But, removing spent blooms will keep your plants
reblooming faster and heavier. Follow the standard rule, pruning just
above the healthiest set of five leaves below the spent blooms.
The fragrance is a mellow “salt spray rose” perfume. Expect flowers into
For roses in containers, consider Knockout’s siblings: the Drifts!
Knockout easy care and hardiness found in compact plants. Drifts offer
single and double flowers in wonderful colors.
Seeing is believing! Stop by any of our stores to check out our
selection of Knockouts and Drifts!