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When purchasing a rose the cost is not always indicative of a quality. The classic roses that have been around and show consistent production from year to year are not so expensive. The strongest and longest living roses are those grown from cuttings and are worth the increased cost in the long run.

Bare root roses should be planted only in early spring or late fall. Deliveries should arrive at the correct planting time for your area. Unpack the roses soon and place roots in a pail of water for at least 24 hours. Cut off damaged roots and canes before planting. The hole dug for planting should be large enough to avoid crowding the roots. Add compost or manure to the soil that has been excavated to increase the volume by 1/2. Create a small mound at the bottom of the hole. Spread the roots over the mound. Fill the hole 3/4 full and tamp the soil and add water; let the water absorb then finish filling.

Some roses such as the hybrid tea roses do not do well in climates with high humidity and heat. Old fashioned tea roses, Chinas and noisettes are old types that live well in damp warm southern climates. When temperatures are as low as 20 degrees the rugged rugosa rose is a perfect choice. They live and thrive around sea spray and prolonged drought. These lovely little roses grow into thick hedges and must be maintained by pruning

If you have a need for ground cover, choose climbing roses. Peg the stems of the roses to the ground this will make a bare bank look beautiful.

Your roses will need pruning, and start by removing the dead, damaged, and diseased wood. Remove all weak branches.

You may notice a black substance that appear as spots and if leaves are falling off prematurely it most likely is a fungus disease called “black spot.” Check with your garden supplier for the proper treatment for this fungus.

Feed your roses 5-10-5, which is a balanced fertilizer or a prepared food in the spring when the buds begin to “swell.” In mid to late August for fall flowering they should be fertilized once more. This will encourage a good fall flowering. Feeding roses that are less than one year old is not encouraged.

Prune in early spring and remove dead and diseased matter. Cutting back the side branches when the blossoms fade encourages new flower growth.

These are tall bushy plants a tree like flowering rose with blossoms of the hybrid tea and requires the same care.

These are heavy bloomers during the growing season with clusters of saucer shaped flowers. They are hardy flowers and more resistant to disease. They require the same care as the flowering hedge.

Hybrid tea rose
A continuous blooming rose from late spring until frost. The roses are large bright double flowers. If you live in the north these roses benefit from cutting back the canes early in the spring at least 12 to 14 inches. If in the south, cut back 18 to 24 inches. These make ideal cut roses.

The old garden rose
This is a large class, which includes southern classes such as China tea and noisette roses. The Northern types are hybrid perpetuais, bourbons, and gallicas. The southern types require little pruning or spraying. Northern types need spring pruning of about 1/3 of each cane and again after the first flowering.

Roses are beautiful and when they begin to bloom nothing is more beautiful. Put on your garden gloves and start planting. You will enjoy nothing more and will soon notice a green “tone” to your thumb.