Tag Archives: roses

Roses in the Desert

Beautiful Colors

My stepmother and father live on the west side of the valley. Last week they posted pictures of some of the roses in their yard. I mentioned this, but I just felt the need to show you some pictures. These are not professional shots, but it shows the diversity of what you can do in the desert with time and water. As always, consult your professional landscaping company for ideas and tips.

yellow rose

I have to admit that roses are not my favorite flower. Don’t get me wrong, I like the look and smell, but I am more partial to tulips and wildflowers. These flowers are gorgeous. Their yard is a mix of desert and non-desert plants. They have a drip system in place.

Growing up, we had a variety of flowers in our yard. The blossoms came from bushes, bulbs, rhizomes and seeds. My parents had plants that flowered throughout the season from crocuses poking their heads through the snow to mums in the fall.

pink and cream rose

I think I had a privileged childhood as far as plants were concerned. My parents always had a garden that had fresh fruits, vegetables and decorative plants. If we were interested in a plant that could be grown, they would research what to do and try to grow it. Some experiments were more successful than others. I had my own little garden probably 3 feet in diameter. It had a rose bush in the middle that I got from my uncle. Shorter flowers were planted around it. Things like moss roses and alyssum. I was in grade school at the time.

red rose

I remember being confused that the flowers on the rose bush were peachy yellow the first year and red the second. That was the first time I heard about plant grafts. The hybrid rose was grafted on a hardier root stock. What happened is that even though the rose bush was covered during the winter, the graft part died and the roots survived. I was amazed at what plants could do.

yellow rose

Roses are a good choice if you have their environment set. They do not have to be replanted every year. As you can see by the pictures, beautiful!

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How to Prepare the Roses for the Cold

The cold weather is knocking on our doors already and the plants in the garden need special care to be able to go through the extreme temperatures winter can bring with it. Although the roses are usually quite low maintenance, simple to plant and look after, there are still a few things you need to know to prepare them for winter. Freezing can destroy the roses by drying their stems, so you have to take the necessary precautions so your roses may live to see another year.

Look after your roses whatever the season

To be able to face a cold winter with low temperatures, the roses need proper care that starts during the summer months. Treating them for diseases and plant parasites should be done during the warm months of the year. Fertilizer is also a must, especially if the soil is not particularly fertile. A strong and healthy rose is more likely to last a cold winter than a plant that is weak by the time fall arrives. During the fall months, the plants start their vegetative break and this is the best time ever to prepare the roses for winter.

The experts don’t recommend any kind of fertilizer beginning with September. Actually a good rule of thumb is to forget everything about fertilizing your plants about eight weeks before the first freeze or a serious drop in temperatures. Wondering what’s the reason behind this rule? Most fertilizers contain azote that accelerate and foster the vegetative growth of the plant. But by doing this, the vegetative break can’t happen or is made difficult for the plant. If the plant is not already in respite in most cases, it will freeze to death once the low temperatures come.

To help prepare the roses for the cold, you can start with applying a treatment, a mixture of copper sulfate and whitewash. It is a good antifungal therapy accepted in any bio-agriculture. More than this it is easy to find, and it will help the plant to take the winter cold better. The treatment should be applied after the last blooming session, in late fall.

It is also during the fall months that you can shorten the roses’ branches by 50-60 cm. This cut is usually made to protect the plant from too much snow that could break them apart, and you could lose all plant this way.

Once the low temperatures are here, you should also apply mulch on the roses to protect the plant during the winter time. You can create little hills of about 20 cm high for the roses, but remember not to start the hills too soon as because of the heat underneath new plants can form that will freeze when the temperature drops even lower.

If you need an expert advice on anything related to landscaping, feel free to contact us today.

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