Roses are among the world’s most beautiful flowers. There are hundreds of varieties of roses and infinite variety in the look, smell, color and growth characteristics of these ever-popular plants.
Roses can be grown outdoors or indoors, in soil or hydroponically. They are grown as domestic plants and commercially.
New fertilizer technologies developed by Advanced Nutrients have given growers unprecedented ability to enhance the quality, size and amount of roses per plant.
If you intend to grow roses outdoors, selecting the best-suited rose varieties for your local climate (wherever you happen to live in North America) can be tricky.
North America is divided into climactic zones, with Zone 1 incorporating the northernmost regions where winter temperatures dip below -40° Celsius, to the southern tip of Florida, where the coldest it ever gets is -1° C (rarely) to 4° Celsius. The bulk of North America, including the southern populated regions of Canada, falls somewhere between Zones 2 and 5, where winter temperatures fluctuate between the minus forties to the minus twenties, Celsius.
If you happen to live in on the edge of a desert, you might want to grow Rosa Rugosa and its hybrids, since they can survive without water for several weeks. If you live in a warm area near an ocean, these varieties can tolerate salt air and sandy soil.
Most modern roses will not do well in hot climates, because they need cold weather and a period of winter dormancy. Roses that can somewhat tolerate hot climates include floribunda, Iceberg, Queen Elizabeth, Moonstone, Oklahoma, Sun Flare, Brandy, Crystalline, Intrigue, and Sunset Celebration. In general, however, the best choices for hot climates are the old garden roses, especially shrub roses, hybrid perpetuals, Chinas, and Teas.
Unlike other garden plants, roses have not been totally tested by government agriculture agencies as regards climate zones. Every other garden plant has been assigned a hardiness rating. However, most rose varieties can be expected to be hardy to Zone 6 (-29° to -23° C or -10° to 0° Fahrenheit).
Zone 6 is a slanted swath that goes from southern New York State in the East, through the lower parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, down to New Mexico and Arizona. The southern parts of the latter two states are in Zones 7 and 8. Any location below Zone 6 will grow most varieties of roses. California is designated as Zone 8 or 9, and thus has a thriving rose industry.
Many miniature roses, old garden roses, shrubs, and species roses are hardy enough for cold climates (Zones 2 to 5). Zone 5 covers the upper halves of the above-mentioned states, all the way up to Nova Scotia and Newfoundland in the East and British Columbia in the West. This zone is crescent shaped, with a cold zone 4 in the middle, covering Minnesota, the Dakotas, Wyoming, and Montana.
If you live in a cold climate, including the populated areas of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, and Quebec (Zones 2 and 3), you will need to choose from a hardy varieties of roses. Rosa Acicularis, Rosa Alba, Rosa Beggeriana, Rosa Blanda, Rosa Centifolia, Rosa Cinnomomea, Rosa Eglanteria, Rosa Foetida, Rosa Gallicia, Rosa Glauca, Rosa Moyessi, Rosa Nitida, Rosa Polyantha, Rosa Rugosa, Rosa Setigera, Rosa Spinossimia, Rosa Suffulta, and Rosa Xanthina are hardy varieties you might consider.
The above are better known by the romantic names such as Belle Amour, Jeanne d’Arc, Maiden’s Blush, La Noblesse, Lady Penzance, Soleil d’Or, Belle Isis, Duchess de Montebello, Tuscany or Old Velvet Rose, Carmen, Baltimore Belle, Suzanne, and Golden Wings.
Don’t grow yellow roses in cold climates; they don’t adjust too well to the harsh winters.
If you are serious about rose growing and you intend to grow them outdoors rather than indoors or in greenhouses, do lots of research to find the best variety for the climate where you will grow them.
TREAT ROSES WELL FOR BEST RESULTS
Even though many varieties of roses are able to withstand cold winters, gardeners still need to protect them to ensure survival and minimize stress on the plants.
Wrapping roses in gauze or a burlap mesh before cold weather arrives is a good idea, as is planting them in a sheltered spot. Some growers mound mulch around their rose bushes, and hold it in place with chicken wire. This can protect roots and stalks.
Wait until just before the onset of serious frost before you apply winter protection. If you apply protection too early, the winter hardiness of the plant is jeopardized. Before wrapping or mulching, fall cleanup should be done by removing plant debris and diseased plant parts. Spring pruning will remove tip dieback.
In very hot climates, you must shield your roses from intense afternoon sun (even though most roses require at least four hours of direct sunshine per day).
If hydroponics gardening is your forte, you can grow roses either in a greenhouse or in a climate controlled grow room. In northern climates, high intensity lights provide the required light for strong growth of roses year round, with a blue spectrum bulb (Metal Halide) to be used during non-blooming growth, and red spectrum bulb types (High Pressure Sodium) during flowering stage.
On the average, it takes about 50 days to produce a rose in a greenhouse or indoors. In addition to providing adequate lighting, hydroponics and greenhouse growers have virtually total control over temperature and can provide CO2 for better photosynthesis and increased productivity.
If you have your heart set on growing roses that prefer the tropics to your own climate, the hydroponics/greenhouse grower can create favourable conditions for that particular variety, even if you don’t live in that climate zone.
You can harvest beautiful, perfumed roses all year!
THEY LOVE TO BE FED AND PROTECTED
Whether you grow roses outdoors, in greenhouses or indoors, you can make the best flowers by using the best fertilizers, protectants and other growth supplements.
Generic rose fertilizers available at “box stores” and other amateur gardening supplies outlets do not maximize the potential of roses.
The Advanced Nutrients company has specialized in promoting floral growth, and has many products that will make roses grow better to produce more and higher quality flowers.
Advanced Nutrients fertilizers and supplements such as Heavy Harvest, Iguana Juice, Bloom Booster, Colossal Bud Blast, Big Bud, Barricade, Protector, Organic B, Emerald Shaman, Voodoo Juice, Piranha, Tarantula and many other products can provide growth, floral quality and protective benefits to all types of roses in all types of growing situations.
Some of these products provide safe, non-toxic comprehensive protection against pests, diseases and pathogens that attack roses. Following is a summary of problems that afflict roses:
Powdery Mildew is a very common rose affliction. Caused by the fungus Sphaerotheca pannosa, this disease first appears on new growth when cool, damp nights follow warm, dry days. New leaves appear twisted and curled and new shoots look deformed.
Older leaves may also be attacked by this fungus. Look on the underside of leaves to detect fungal growth. White, powdery growth appears on leaves, stems, buds and flowers. Unlike most other fungal infections, powdery mildew spreads on dry leaves as well as on wet ones.
Powdery Mildew looks like bumps on young leaves, but later looks like somebody poured sugar or talcum powder on your plants. It’s most likely to occur when there’s a combination of cool nights and warm days, or when there’s moisture around or on roses that is not able to evaporate completely during the day.
Ironically, extremely wet conditions inhibit development of powdery mildew. It thrives during high humidity but forms on dry parts of leaves.
Powdery Mildew is white or gray, but there’s another rose attacker that’s black. If small, black spots with whitish or yellowish fringes start appearing on rose leaves, there’s a good chance your plants have been infected by the fungus Diplocarpon rosae, which causes Black Spot. Eventually, these leaves will drop off and the defoliated plant might die if stressed during the winter.
Black Spot grows in colonies on rose leaves, and is often caused by excess humidity or watering. Black Spot causes blackish or purplish spots on leaves, about 1/8 to 1/4 inch in diameter. On the canes it appears as raised dark reddish or black blotches.
Blackspot usually appears in mid-summer. It spreads quickly across leaves, turning them yellow before it kills them. Whenever black spot is sighted, it is very important to immediately remove and destroy infected leaves, including those on the ground. You may have to remove the majority of an infected plant’s foliage.
BEATING ROSE PATHOGENS
Many growers use a baking soda solution to fight powdery mildew fungus. They mix one rounded tablespoon of baking soda with one tablespoon of summer horticultural oil in a gallon of water. Then they spray thoroughly, as long as the temperature is not above 85° Fahrenheit. This is a preventative method; it will not stop powdery mildew if it is already established on a plant. Spray early in the morning so leaves can dry before periods of darkness.
Another treatment is sulphur dust, sulphur or lime sulphur used every 7-10 days.
Advanced Nutrients Genius Oil has also been proven effective in the fight against powdery mildew and other pathogens. It contains organic Neem oil, which is applied as a foliar spray. Its use results in bigger yields, better roses and healthier plants. Rose aficionados also use Protector, made by the same company, which fights powdery mildew even after it has appeared.
To prevent black spot and other pathogenic rose infections, grow varieties that are resistant to pathogens. Make sure your rose growing area is clean of fallen leaves and other debris. Plant roses in a sunny location where plants will easily dry between waterings.
If you catch it early enough, Powdery Mildew can be sprayed off roses. To avoid infestations, plant and prune roses so they get lots of aeration and breeze.
Roses planted too close to a wall or to each other may not get enough airflow. You should prune interior canes so there’s more light and air flowing into the plant internal zone.
You can help roses acquire a stronger immune system that will help them resist pathogens. Advanced Nutrients makes a product called Scorpion Juice, which acts as a vaccination for your roses by inducing systemic acquired resistance (SAR) in the plant cells. Once this mechanism is triggered, the plant builds an immune response to pathogens and grows faster as well.
There are many other Advanced Nutrients formulas that give roses systemic and localized protection against diseases, pathogens and insect pests. You can contact the Advanced Nutrients technical support advisor toll-free to get specific information about these products and how to use them so you have fantastic roses protected from problems that can hurt them.
OTHER ROSE DISEASES AND INTERVENTIONS
Rust, the third most common disease of the rose plant, is caused by the fungus Phragmidium sp. To combat rust, prune before your plants bud in the spring, and grow Rosa multiflora, which has natural resistance to rust. Avoid overfertilization; high potassium helps rust grow.
In order to detect Rust, examine the underside of older leaves. If you spot rust-colored growth, your roses are infected. Soon, the leaves will drop off. The onset of dry, summer weather will stop the infestation, but as soon as the cool, wet nights of fall return, rust is back again.
Rust can kill roses quickly. Look for bright reddish brown or bright orange powdery spots on leaves and wood. As the infection progresses, Rust will appear on upper leaf surfaces. Rust spores are only alive in temperatures below 85 degrees F. The disease is most likely to occur in humid and wet areas in springtime.
In areas with hot summers and cold winters, rust does not survive very well. As soon as you see any sign of rust, cut infected leaves and canes and destroy them away from the garden.
Never compost plant parts that are diseased. It is best to burn them. Rust leaves damage on canes, which causes a vectoring condition favorable for other diseases. A product made by Advanced Nutrients called Barricade can be part of your arsenal of protection against Rust.
To prevent the spread of rust, wash your plants thoroughly in early morning to remove the spores before they can establish themselves. To prevent infestation, use baking soda/horticultural oil spray, or use Advanced Nutrients Genius Oil.
Proper planting, spacing, fertilizing, irrigation, and selection will produce roses that are more naturally resistant to disease. Rinse foliage frequently to clean off pollution and dirt. Get rid of fallen debris quickly.
Sulphur is a good fungicide, and because it is a mined mineral, growers are permitted to use it in organic horticulture. It may be used as a preventative for black spot or as a slow-down agent for the spread of rust. Be sure to wear goggles when dusting with sulphur.
MILDEW AND VIRUSES IN ROSES- HERE’S HOW TO WIN AGAINST THEM
Downey mildew and stem/cane cankers cause problems in roses. Cane cankers are caused by several different fungi that cause a canker to surround the stem with a canker that eventually kills the plant.
Downey mildew causes leaves to turn yellow and fall. It causes flower buds to mutate. Young shoots wilt and die. Dark red/burgundy stains show up on upper leaf and stem surfaces, and there can be a fuzzy growth on undersides of leaves. Downey Mildew usually occurs when the humidity gets high (over 85%) and the temperature is below 75 degrees F.
Virus infections differ from fungi infections in that virus problems become systemic; inside the plant, the phloem tissue spreads viruses.
Viral infection symptoms include overall chlorosis (yellowing) or chlorotic mottling, discoloration of the veins, yellowish green to bright yellow spots and blotches, or the appearance of mysterious “watermarks” on the rose leaves.
Common Rose Mosaic virus and Yellow Mosaic virus have long victimized roses. The symptoms of virus infections are similar to those described above, except that in Yellow Mosaic, the chlorotic areas are an intensely bright yellow.
Rose Mosaic Virus shows up on leaves as yellow lines or spots. The lines often look like a zig zag. Sometimes the leaves have yellowed spots that resemble mosaic tiles. Rose Mosaic and other pathogens decrease floral production and overall vigour.
There are studies showing that as much as half of roses grown commercially in America have Rose Mosaic.
Rose Ring Pattern, Rose Streak, and Rose Leaf Curl are viral infections whose names describe their symptoms. Rose Leaf Curl is sometimes called Rose Wilt or Dieback. In the U.S. rose leaf curl occurs in many antique roses.
Rose Spring Dwarf virus occurs in commercial nurseries, landscape plantings, and public gardens. Its symptoms appear in the spring, when twisted or downward curled and dwarfed shoots can be noted.
One way to beat these pathogens is to carefully inspect any rose stock before you bring it into your growing area. Most diseases and pests vector in on new stock, on pets, or from human contact.
Another way to guard your roses is to regularly treat them with the previously-mentioned protectant and strengthening factors, such as Advanced Nutrients Barricade, Protector, Scorpion Juice, Piranha, Tarantula, Bug Away and Genius Oil. These products use unique ingredients and methods to make plants resist and survive pathogenic infections and other attacks.
GRAY MOLD AND ROSE WILT PROBLEMS
GRAY MOLD AND ROSE WILT
Botrytis, otherwise known as gray mold, initially occurs as pink spots on light-colored flowers. These might turn yellow or dark brown with age. Flowers may fail to open, or may just rot. Leaves also rot. You can see a grey mold on the plant, and it may also attack the base of the plant where it contacts soil. Gray mold loves moist and cool temperatures. As soon as you see grey mold, you must cut all infected parts off the plant and destroy them.
The fungus Sphaceloma rosarum or Elsinoe rosarum is called Purple Spotting or Spot Anthracnose fungus. It appears as red, purple, pink or brown spots on leaves and stems. In advanced condition, the leaves turn yellow and drop off.
Another fungus is called Rose Wilt or Verticillium Wilt. This fungus lives in soil and prevents the plants from uptaking water from roots into the plant. During hot conditions, the disease becomes obvious, with wilting and yellowing of leaves a prevalent symptom. Eventually, the entire plant is defoliated and dies. Verticillum can get out of control quickly, and most growers are forced to yank infected plants and destroy them.
Coniothyrium wernsdorfiae causes “Brand Canker.” You can detect it when stems develop brown or black oval spots. The disease can cause stems to lose strength and fall. Most often you will see this disease in spring or in late summer. If you carelessly trim your plants or otherwise damage them, or if plants are exposed to extremely cold temperatures, Brand Canker can more easily attack plants. This canker can be caused by overfertilization, especially with nitrogen.
As soon as you see Brand Canker, cut the infected area off the plant and destroy it. If you leave even a tiny amount of Canker on a plant, it can quickly re-spread. To minimize vectoring, dip your pruning shears in a diluted water and bleach mixture every time you cut any infection from a plant. This is a good general purpose procedure for anyone using tools in the garden: disinfect them after ever use so you don’t spread problems between plants.
Stem Canker is a brown, raised area on canes. It is a known killer of young rose plants, of old plants that have health issues, and of climbing roses. Crown Canker attacks the base of buds, circling the whole stem and gradually killing the plant.
Most of these cankers attack plants that are weakened, stressed, or damaged. Once the cankers are on the plants, your only remedy is to cut back the affected area. Many of these cankers are vectoring into rose gardens from nurseries.
WITCHES’ BROOM, A DEADLY ROSE DISEASE, OFTEN CALLED THE “AIDS” OF ROSES
Rose Rosette is called witches’ broom, and it is almost always deadly. Savvy gardeners quickly remove plants that have signs of Rose Rosette, which has three stages of development.
The first phase looks like bumps on stems and canes. Canes turn purple or deep red. Leaves appear wrinkled, and are also deep red. The second stage of Rosette is evidenced by closely spaced internodes leaf buds. Buds become distorted or even fail to fully open, giving an appearance of rosettes. The third stage is characterized by spindly, yellowing stem growth.
Nobody knows what actually causes Rosette, although some say a virus causes it. Rosette is vectored by a mite called Phyllocoptes fructiphilus. Hybrid Tea roses are among those that are especially attacked by Rosette and are hosts to the mites that vector it.
Another strange rose disease is called Crown Gall, caused by a bacterial infection that spread like a cancer on roots, lower stems and branches. The “galls” are rough balls that can be hard or spongy. Some forms of insects also cause galls.
A plant afflicted by galls will grow slower, have yellowing leaves, fail to produce a maximal amount of buds, and will eventually die. The only thing you can do about gall is to remove the plant from your garden and destroy it. Please note that the bacteria that cause Crown Gall are known to live in soil and to be quite hardy.
You can protect your plants from bacterial infections by using a product made by Advanced Nutrients, called Tarantula. It has beneficial bacteria that fight harmful bacteria. They have other products, such as Scorpion Juice, Barricade, and Piranha that create various forms of protection that can help plants fight off viruses, molds, fungi, and bacteria.
VIRUS AND PATHOGENS- WHERE DO THEY COME FROM?
Rose viruses and other attackers are not seed-borne; they are spread almost exclusively through grafting and budding operations carried out by gardeners, commercial growers, and nurseries, and by other avoidable vectors.
Since only 14% of losses are caused by viral diseases, chances are that what ails your rosebushes is fungal. Although many growers buy plants already infected by fungi, fungi can also come from airborne sources and other vectors.
You have control over your whether fungi plague your roses, and this control begins with what varieties you choose to plant, where you plant, your garden’s cleanliness, and how you water.
Follow up this proper care with the proper Advanced Nutrients feed and protectant formulas, and you will have the healthiest roses you’ve ever seen.
A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME
CLASSIFYING ROSE SPECIES
A single, standardized system of rose classification has not been accepted by rosarians (people who grow roses).
There are at least 20,000 known cultivars of roses, with hundreds being added every year. The World Rose Convention in 1971 attempted to set up a classification system, but most growers still go by informal but respected divisions.
The most common groupings of roses identify three main types:
Species Roses, include wild roses and their hybrids, mostly large shrubs or climbers, featuring single flowers.
Old Garden Roses, including the subdivisions Alba, Bourbon, Centifolia, China, Damask, Gallica, Hybrid Perpetual, Moss, Noisette, Portland, Sempervirens, and Tea. These might be large, freely-branching shrubs with clusters of 5-7 flowers (Alba), or small to medium shrubs with small, mainly double flowers, singly or in clusters (China). Gallica boasts richly colored, often fragrant flowers; up to 3 to a cluster in midsummer.
Modern Garden Roses, such as Floribunda, which are upright shrubs with fragrant, single or double flowers in clusters; Polyantha, compact, tough shrubs with many small flowers in summer and autumn; Dwarf, similar to Floribunda roses, but smaller; Hybrid Tea, a subgroup that flowers more than once during the season, with pointed, fragrant flowers; Miniature Bush, a tiny version of Hybrid Tea roses; Groundcover, a trailing or spreading rose with small leaves and flowers, also remontant (flowering more than once); and Climbers, Ramblers, and Shrubs, a widely diverse group.
Growers select roses for color, appearance, climate appropriateness, fragrance and hardiness.
If you have a classic rose in mind, the Hybrid Tea Elizabeth Harkness fits the bill. Pale ivory to blush pink in color, it has a sweet and enduring scent. A circular cluster of petals softly curl under at the edges. Or you might try to grow another Hybrid Tea, Lovely Lady, which is rosy pink with a sweet fragrance, has fewer petals than Elizabeth Harkness, but is equally beautiful.
An old garden rose with a classic rose look is the Tea rose “Lady Hillingdon,” which is soft yellow in color. It has a rich, fruity in fragrance. Yellow roses do not grow well in cold climates.
A Miniature Bush rose called the Red Ace is a rich, deep crimson in color, but has little scent. Hybrid Tea rose Alec’s Red is a fragrant deep crimson rose. Another Hybrid Tea is the sweet scented Red Devil, which grows vigorous and bushy. A rambling rose named Crimson Shower has a light honey scent, with short-petaled flowers that open all the way to display a yellow centre.
Wild Roses and their hybrids often look more like Dogwood flowers than roses. A wild rose hybrid, Rosa Duponti, has fully-opened white flowers with a cluster of yellow stamens in the middle. It has a sweet, very fragrant scent and is used as a hedge or mixed border.
Shrub roses such as Rosa Rugosa and its hybrids (along with tall Floribundas) are especially good for hedges. Plant Floribundas in a double staggered-row to create thickness; they are not as substantial as Shrub roses.
Hybrid Teas have long stems, which makes them popular as cut flowers. Growing for the cut flower market is among the most lucrative of rose-growing endeavors. Hybrid teas can be planted in raised beds, or containers.
Climbers should be planted near a wall, with a trellis to support the climbing branches.
Most roses can be dried or steamed; drying roses is an age-old tradition that results in scented, colorful petals for potpourri, sachets, and other uses.
Roses are one of Nature’s sweetest gifts. Using the abovementioned information and the methods and materials mentioned, you can grow roses for a variety of uses, including commercial roses that will generate lots of profits.
Make sure you study the Advanced Nutrients website for comprehensive fertilizers, plant protectant formulas, and flower-boosting formulas that will give you the best roses you have ever seen.
All material is copyrighted, 2006 by Advanced Nutrients and can’t be copied, excerpted or otherwise used without the express, written permission of Advanced Nutrients.