Cause Roses: Plant A Rosebush, Support A Cause

Cause Roses: Plant A Rosebush, Support A Cause

By: Stan V. Griep, American Rose Society Consulting Master Rosarian, Rocky Mountain District

By Stan V. Griep
American Rose Society Consulting Master Rosarian – Rocky Mountain District

Have you ever heard of the Roses for a Cause program? The Roses for a Cause program is something Jackson & Perkins has done for a few years now. If you buy one of the rosebushes listed in the program, a percentage of the money goes to help a specified cause. Thus, buying one or more of these fine rosebushes not only adds beauty to your garden but also lends a hand at helping out our world.

Popular Cause Roses

Here is a listing of the current rosebushes in the program:

  • Florence Nightingale Rose (Floribunda Rose) – 10 percent of net sales is donated to the Florence Nightingale International Foundation, which is devoted to the mission of advancing nursing education, research, and service for the public good.
  • Nancy Reagan Rose (Hybrid Tea Rose) – 10 percent of the net sales supports the work of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation. (More than $232,962 donated to date).
  • Our Lady of Guadalupe™ Rose (Floribunda Rose) – A lovely and luminous rose! Five percent of its net sales supports Hispanic College Fund scholarships. (More than $108,597 donated to date.)
  • Pope John Paul II Rose (Hybrid Tea Rose) – 10 percent of net sales donated to the poor of sub-Saharan Africa. (More than $121,751 donated to date).
  • Ronald Reagan Rose (Hybrid Tea Rose) – 10 percent of the net sales from this striking rose supports the work of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation.
  • Veterans’ Honor® Rose (Hybrid Tea Rose) – 10 percent of the net sales from our 2000 Rose of the Year® winner supports American veterans’ health care. (More than $516,200 donated to date.)

These rosebushes not only support the causes noted but also are hardy rosebushes for your garden or rose bed. Each of them brings the return gift of eye-catching beauty as well as some pleasant fragrances to your home garden, landscape or rose bed.

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Oso Easy Double Red™. Photo by: Proven Winners.

Roses have a reputation for being temperamental and difficult to care for. However, not all roses are created equal. Shrub roses are some of the easiest to grow and have the same beautiful attributes of classic roses—but without all the fuss.

Shrub roses come in a wide array of colors, from snowy white to deep purple. Though the flowers aren’t as showy as more traditional hybrid teas, shrub roses require far less maintenance and are more resilient. Newer cultivars have been bred for exceptional disease resistance, hardiness, and a greater number of blooms.

Why Is My Indoor Rose Dying?

Freezing temperatures

Plants in pots do, in fact, get much colder than plants in the ground. Placing your rose plant in the sunniest spot in the house will help. Ensure this area is draught-free, and this will go a long way in your indoor rose care.

Pests and diseases

Don’t think you’re getting off the hook with critters just because your rose is potted and indoors. In the eyes of any bug, it is still as worthy of a prize!

The most common critter is the aphid, and aphids usually can be found on the buds and leaves where they will suck out rose juices and make the infected parts of the rose rot. If you spot them – just spray them down, off of the plant. You can also softly scrape them off with a tool. Preferably do this in the morning, so that the potentially wetted leaves have time to recover.

Indoor roses are also susceptible to fungal diseases such as powdery mildew and black spot. To prevent, make sure roses have good fresh air circulation. To cure already afflicted roses, look for a fungicide.

Black spots

Black spots are usually caused by damp conditions. Make sure to cut off affected leaves and treat foliage with a fungicide specifically made for blackspot. Make sure good air ventilation exists around the perimeter of your rose plant.

You might also want to look into choosing a rose hybrid that is more resistant to diseases if you find yourself having a general problem with the dampness of your living space.

Yellow leaves dropping off

An ailment of many reasons – lack of sunlight, dry soil and dry air can all cause yellowing and fallout of rose leaves. Resume good care – try moving the pot to where more direct sunlight is accessible, check if the soil is dry and water accordingly, making sure of the water passage and use air humidifiers if your living space calls for it due to dry air.

Home Plants Gardening

For someone venturing into growing roses, one of the first questions to ask is how to plant roses? And a wise question it would be because we should always start with the end in mind. And if the end we have in sight is an abundance of beautiful blooming roses, then the logical beginning is to learn about rose planting. That’s the first step of the journey.

Location, location, location!

Rose planting goes way beyond the depth of the hole and weather the fertilizer should be added now or later. Before any other consideration is the location you want for your rose plant. In fact it has been said that just as with real estate, the first consideration of a rose grower is location, location, location.

Most species of rose ideally need 6 hours or more of direct unfiltered sunlight each day. Even the species of rose that are considered shade tolerant want at least 4 hours. So be sure to choose a location with adequate sunlight when rose planting.

How about the soil? Healthy nutrient rich soil is essential for a thriving rose plant. Soil that has too much sand or clay is nutrient deficient and far from ideal. A simple test is the ‘hand mold’ test. Clump the soil in your hands making a roughly spherical mold. If it does not easily crumble, it likely has too much clay. If it doesn’t hold its shape well and crumbles very easily it likely has too much sand. If it holds its shape well but also will crumble easily it’s probably a good soil for rose planting. Also, the soil must not have too much chalk or limestone or be too acidic.

Another consideration when choosing the location for rose planting is its proximity to other plants and trees. Many plants and trees have roots that extend beyond their drip line and will take nutrients and water from the soil as far as their roots reach. If the soil where you want to plant your roses is full of roots from other plants, this is likely to cause a problem for your roses.

Ideally, most roses prefer to mix only with other rose plants or other non-invasive plants, although some climbing roses are an exception to this rule.

Other Rose Planting Tips

As for digging the hole, it should be only slightly larger than the root system of the plant or the size of the pot it comes in. The hole depth depends somewhat on your climate. In general, colder climates require a slightly deeper hole. If possible it’s a good idea to speak with other rose growers in your area who have experience with growing and planting roses in your climate.

Another great tip is to loosen the soil at the bottom of the hole and place some compost and a sprinkling of bone meal in it. Bone meal is an excellent slow acting source of phosphorus, great for root growth.

Loosen the soil around the roots and use your fingers to slightly spread the roots. Place the plant in the hole and refill the hole. Water the roots before filling the last few inches of soil. Then fill the last of the hole, compact gently and water again.

Once you know how to plant roses, and even more so after you’ve had some experience, it really is easy. It just takes some knowledge, some practice and a bit of common sense for good measure. Rose planting has been the start of a very rewarding pastime for countless rose enthusiasts, now it’s your turn.
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