Too Cold to Plant Rose, But Its Starting to Grow - Knowledgebase Question

Belgrade, MT
Question by Kkjholly
April 27, 2001
I live in Montana. We purchased a climbing rose that should be able to thrive here, however it is starting to leaf out. It is still in the plastic bag and I do not want to plant it yet as it will stay cold for another few weeks! What should I do?


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Answer from NGA
April 27, 2001

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I'm assuming you have a bare-root plant. You need to try to keep it cool so it won't leaf out too much and keep the roots moist so they don't dry out and die. If they have a moist packing around the roots, they can be placed in a cool place such as a garage or basement for 7-10 days. Keep the plastic wraps open, so it doesn't create a greenhouse effect. Keep out of direct sunlight. Or, you can heel them in. This means packing their roots in moist soil until you can plant them. You can put it in a bucket and pack the roots and the bottom third of the plant with moist compost, sawdust, peat moss or soil. Store in a cool place, 35-40 degrees, and make sure the packing material stays moist. Try not to keep them heeled in too long past the planting time since they'll start developing week roots and growth.

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