Plants - Roses

Plant a bare-root rose

Place dormant roses in the ground for a rosy outlook on life


bare-root-A.gif1. Left: Stimulate new growth by trimming off the bottom 2.5 centimetres from each root; if the rose has broken dormancy, trim off any leafy, white shoots to five millimetres from the woody stems.

bare-root-B.gif2. Right: Gently spread the roots over the pyramid of soil (see previous page). In Zones 7 and warmer, the graft union (where the cultivar has been grafted onto the rootstock) may be set at or just below the soil surface. In all other zones, position the rose so the union is at least five centimetres below grade (in Zones 2 to 4, the union can be placed as deep as 15 centimetres). Adjust the height of the pyramid to position the plant at the appropriate depth.

bare-root-C.gif3. Left: Using one hand to hold the rose in position, backfill the hole with additional topsoil until level with the soil surface. Firmly tread on the soil to eliminate air pockets.

Bare-root-D.gif4. Right: Water the rose thoroughly using a transplant solution such as 10-52-10 applied at half-strength. Solutions containing IBA (indole butyric acid) are particularly good for stimulating new root growth.

bare-roots-E.gif5. Left: Hill up the rose bush with additional topsoil, leaving just the tips of the canes exposed, to prevent them from scorching in the bright spring sun before the roots have begun to establish. After two weeks, remove the excess topsoil used to hill up the bush so the graft point sits at the appropriate depth below the surface. Add a three- to four-centimetre-thick layer of mulch to help conserve water and to discourage weeds. Healthy green shoots should appear in seven to 14 days.

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