UPDATED OCTOBER 2018…
Many people ask … “What do you do with all those roses in the fall?” Really not much … I tend to keep it simple. There are other chores that get a lot more of our attention in the fall than the roses. Like leaves! We have a lot of trees and so there are a lot of leaves. Mr. G has that process well in hand — with power tools like his leaf blower and tractor.
As far as the rose companions are concerned, I don’t cut back my perennials and annuals until the spring–I love the winter interest they provide especially when the snow falls on the different plant shapes. And, those seed pods are very yummy to our birds who hang around.
Now for “all those roses.” Many of my roses are known to be winter hardy because I know that it is very likely that we will have a harsh winter and I would advise you make decisions on the roses you buy based on your weather conditions throughout the year not just your spring and summer.
- I will clean up the beds of diseased leaves and debris and add mulch were needed.
- I will take those in pots into the garage to protect from the winter. They don’t require much, just a drink of water every few weeks.
- I will provide a heavy layer of much for a few of the particularly tender roses or sentimental favorites that I would hate to lose, by adding 4-5″ of extra mulch.
- I will tie up the long canes of the climbers. I can look out and see that Peggy Martin and Francis E. Lester has grown some long arching canes since I tied them up a few weeks ago.
- I will also cut back any of the roses that are extra tall to about waist high to keep them from flapping in the winter winds.
For the rest of the roses, they are on their own. Most can take it, but I know that if we have a winter like we had last year, I will lose a few and it is to be expected. But, you know what that means, once I get over the emotion of the loss, I will celebrate the extra space for the new introductions.
Rugosas are some of the toughest roses I grow. They will be back next spring give us their own brand of fireworks and fragrance in the garden. Oh I just can’t wait. If you want to read more about FIREWORKS and FRAGRANCE in the garden, read on here.