Below is handy hints on how to grow roses including information on a selection of popular roses
You don’t earn a title like ‘The Queen of Flowers’ without doing something right. For centuries roses have graced our gardens with their ethereal beauty and intoxicating fragrance and they haven’t lost their appeal – in fact, they’re perfect for modern gardens.
There is a rose for every situation in the garden from flowering groundcovers to shrubs, standards, weepers and climbers. They can be grown with other companions in the flower border, used to decorate fences and pillars, grown as features in their own right or displayed in decorative containers on the patio or balcony.
PICK OF THE BUNCH
These rose varieties are top sellers in garden centres and for good reason!
‘Mr Lincoln’ is an absolute star among the classic red roses, with sensuous crimson blooms and an intoxicating fragrance. It flowers continuously from spring right through to autumn and makes a stunning cut flower. For real impact grow it among hot coloured perennials like brilliant yellow Rudbeckias or dwarf orange Dahlias in the flower border.
‘Blue Moon’ isn’t strictly blue, but it does display rare beauty with attractive fluffy mauve flowers and a beautiful scent. Grow it with dark purple and brilliant yellow flowering perennials for continuous colour from spring to autumn.
‘Papa Meilland’ has sexy dark velvety red flowers and a beautiful damask fragrance. The flowers are displayed on long stems so it’s perfect for picking and it blooms prolifically throughout the warmer months.
In the apricot shades you just can’t beat ‘Just Joey’ with coppery orange flowers and a sweet scent. The flowers have the prettiest frill to the petals so they ooze romance and look superb in the cottage garden combined with pink foxgloves, purple catmint and giant alliums.
Charles de Gaulle
Charles de Gaulle is another stand out variety in the ‘blue’ shades, with fragrant, fully double lavender coloured flowers and very few thorns.
‘Double delight’ boasts big showy double blooms and an intense long lasting perfume. The flowers are carmine red with a creamy white centre – a stunning combination. Pick them for the vase when they haven’t quite opened, so that they hold their contrasting colour.
David Austin Roses
If you want the best of both worlds look to the David Austin Roses which combine the intoxicating perfume and form of the old-fashioned roses with the repeat flowering and colour range of the modern rose. ‘Graham Thomas’ is a stunner with petal filled golden yellow blooms that are deliciously scented.
Delbard Painters Collection
The Delbard Roses are French, fragrant and fabulous with colourful, charistmatic flowers and long flowering displays. They also thrive in our hot dry conditions. Roses in the Painter’s Collection are inspired by the works of the great French impressionists so they are real show off’s, with flowers that look like they have been brushed with paint. The real star is ‘Red Intuition’ with loosely striped flowers in shades of raspberry, currant and wine. It makes the perfect cut flower. You’ll also love ‘Henri Matisse’ with big blooms in swirling colours of white, strawberry pink and raspberry red or ‘Grimaldi’ with brilliant salmon pink flowers that are infused with white and pale pink.
- Roses enjoy at least 6 hours of sunlight a day. If you grow them in too much shade you’ll get weak sickly plants with lanky growth and few flowers.
- Apply a good layer of organic mulch like pea straw or lucerne to conserve water and reduce competition from weeds.
- Annual applications of compost and manure will improve the health and vigour of your roses.
- Some roses are particularly susceptible to fungal diseases like Black Spot and powdery mildew, so give them space to breathe. Don’t allow them to be swamped by over enthusiastic companion plants which can block airflow, and increase the likelihood of disease.
- Water plants early in the morning. Wet foliage, particularly overnight, encourages fungal attack.
Always apply Seasol (30mL per 9 litres of water) to roses at planting time and throughout the season to initiate root development and help to keep fungal diseases such as black spot and sucking insects like aphids at bay.
- Begin feeding your roses when they burst into growth in spring. Liquid feed every fortnight throughout the growing season with PowerFeed (50mL per 9 litres of water), a dynamic liquid fertilizer and soil conditioner. You’ll get lush growth, loads more flowers and enhanced flower colour.
- Grow them with other companions to conceal their bare prickly legs and provide colour and interest throughout the cooler months when your roses are looking drab.