The Q&A Archives: Rose

Question: My rose looks dry but at the very bottom there is green and it hasn't bloom yet. What's happening to it?

Answer: Based on your description I am not certain what is happening to your rose. However, if it leafed out and started to grow but then was stressed by either a hard freeze or possibly by transplanting,or if it was newly planted and allowed to dry out, then there could be some foliage damage as a result of that.

It is a good sign that there is healthy growth at the bottom. At this point I would suggest you remove any dried out foliage and if necessary, trim off any dead portions of the canes. To check if a cane is alive or dead, inspect it carefully beginning at the tip. Live cane is smooth, supple and firm, the buds are plump. Dead wood will be dry and brittle, off color gray or dull brown, and will snap in your hand; the buds will also be dried out. Trim off any dead cane.

Then keep the soil evenly moist like a wrung out sponge, not sopping wet and not dried out. This should help the plant recover.

If you see additional foliage drying, you might want to consult with your local county extension for additional help in diagnosing the problem.

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