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Planting Bare Root Roses

A great way to get ahead of the growing season and save money is to plant bare-root roses during the dormant season. In autumn and winter, bare-root roses are available for purchase. They are less expensive than planting roses in pots, and there is a much wider selection of bare-rooted roses to choose from than with pot-grown plants. A bare-root rose, in contrast to potted plants, has no soil on its roots. When you plant them when they are dormant, they begin to grow quickly and strongly when temperatures rise again in the spring.

Image of young agronomist woman planting red roses in garden on summer day

When to plant 

The best time to plant bare-root roses is during the bare-root season, which runs from October to April. This gives them time to settle in so they can bloom in the summer. The only situations in which you should avoid planting are when the ground is frozen, saturated, or experiencing drought.

What tools are needed?

A spade, fork, large watering can, bucket, and well-rotted manure or Compost King – shrub, tree, and rose compost are all you need.

A step-by-step guide to planting bare root roses

Step 1: Rehydrate your rose

For bare-root roses, rehydrate your rose in a bucket of water for a minimum of 2 hours prior to planting. Before planting, this will guarantee that the roots are adequately hydrated.

Step 2: Prepare the soil

Using a garden fork, thoroughly dig through the soil to remove any weeds or large stones. This will guarantee that the new roots can freely explore their new surroundings.

Step 3: Dig the hole

Planting red roses in garden on summer day

Using a spade, dig a hole that is wide enough and deep enough to hold the stem and the rose’s roots. This should be approximately 16″ wide by 16″ deep (40x40cm).

Step 4: Break the soil at the hole’s base.

Using a fork, break up the soil at the base of the hole to allow the roots to go deeper into the soil. Mix a spadeful of well-rotted manure or Compost King shrub, tree & rose compost with the soil removed from the hole and mix it in with the remaining soil. This will add vital nutrients to the soil helping the rose to establish itself more effectively.

Step 5: Position the rose in the hole

When planting a bare-root shrub, place the rose in the middle of the hole. The bottoms of the stems should be 2″ (5 cm) below the top of the hole if you’re using a bamboo cane to help.

To plant a bare-root climber, place the rose in the middle of the hole with the stems pointing toward the wall or supporting structure and the roots away, at an angle of 45 degrees. To determine whether the planting depth is correct, place a bamboo cane horizontally across the top of the hole. The graft union, or swollen region between the stems and roots, ought to be just below the bamboo cane.

Step 6: Backfill the soil

Planting red roses in garden on summer day
Planting red roses in garden on summer day

Utilising the soil that was initially dug into the hole, backfill around the rose’s roots.

Step 7: Firm in

Firm in soil around the rose gently using hands or hand trowel
Firm in soil around the rose gently using hands or hand trowel

Make sure the rose is secure and that there are no air pockets in the soil by lightly firming the soil with your hands or hand trowel around it.

Step 8: Water

Gardener watering roses flowers with watering can after transplanting into soil
Gardener watering roses flowers with watering can after transplanting into soil

After planting, give the rose ample water. Find out how much water your rose needs by clicking this link.

FAQ’s

Why is there wax on my bare-root roses? Should I remove it?

The wax on your bare-root roses is there to prevent the stems from drying out. This waxy coating helps to retain moisture during the time before the roses are planted. You don’t need to remove the wax; it will naturally weather away after you plant the roses.

Shop Bare Root Roses

Updated on June 10, 2024

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