The Q&A Archives: Miniature Rosebush

Question: I have a miniature rosebush in a pot that I got at K-Mart for about $3. It seemed to have mildew, so I put it out on my terrace in March, sprayed it, sprayed it again later in the season for aphids, then re-potted it after removing some dead branches and roots. I even threw some ladybugs at it, since I was growing a vine that seemed to attract them. After all this, the little scrap that was left alive and vermin- and disease-free grew into a terrific little bush that bloomed continually all summer.

I have no idea what kind it is - it has white blossoms - but after all the effort I put into keeping it alive, I'd like to know how to winter it properly. It seems happier outside. Is there any way to keep it alive out there all winter? I get good sun for most of the day and would like to be able to winter it with a small blueberry bush in another pot.

Answer: Many of the miniature roses are very winter hardy, so your best bet would be to protect the roots from extreme cold by placing the pot in a sheltered location out of the wind, if possible. Ideally, sink the pot into the ground so the roots will be insulated. Another option is to pile mulch around the pot or to wrap it in insulating materials. Make sure the soil does not dry out, especially if the location is sunny or windy. The same methods should work for your blueberry bush as well. One last caution, you should be aware that terra cotta pots will often crack or break if allowed to freeze. Good luck with your plants!

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