Roses forum: Bare root Roses grow and then die. WHY?

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farmerG
Apr 4, 2020 12:03 PM CST
I've been growing roses for about three years now. I have about 35 different bushes in my garden. Each year I learn something more about these exquisitie flowers. I buy them bare root from three different growers(DA, Regan, Edmund). I live in SOCAL and my area gets very hot in summer. I would say bout 30% of the bushes I plant, grow rapidly for about1-2 weeks and then all of sudden, almost overnights start dying back and eventually die. I cannot understand how most you plant, grow perfectly and then this 30% grow and then die. I do all Im supposed to(soak, plant deep, water, mulch the stalks) Anyone have an Idea so that I can maybe stop this?
Thank you
pic shows one that grew and now dying and then others in the secodn pic, growing like crazy






Zone 9, Sunset Zone 9 (Zone 9b)
Roses
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Mustbnuts
Apr 5, 2020 5:34 AM CST
Could you post your pictures again? I am not seeing them. Thanks!
Coastal Southern California (Zone 13a)
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jerijen
Apr 5, 2020 2:29 PM CST
Please. No pix show here.

But I would venture a guess that, for some reason or another, some of your roses are getting regular water, while others are not. The ones that don't get water, probably, are the ones that die, when winter has passed, and California goes into 9 months without rain.

So --- How are your roses watered?
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
Apr 6, 2020 11:28 PM CST
@farmerG ....

Can you tell us what kind of bare root roses you are planting ?

If you are planting roses that are bagged and found at the big box stores ... called "bare root roses", these are the roses that we call "body-bag" roses. They are almost dead before your purchase. In a sense, they should have been culled and never distributed for sale. That would be another reason for a high mortality rate with your roses.
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
SW Ohio River Valley (Zone 6b)
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vaporvac
Apr 7, 2020 12:25 AM CST
I think farmer G mentioned getting them from DA, Regan, Edmund.
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
Apr 7, 2020 12:58 PM CST
Vap ... you are right. Sometimes, the spring marathons, especially when I am working between bouts of snow and rain, leave me brain dead, or almost ... Sighing!

@farmerG ....

We don't know your cultural practices or where you are located. Both can have an impact on how a rose takes off. Some roses are far more picky about getting what they want right away, but the sources you are using ... as vaporvac reminded me ... bud their roses to the same root stock, so the rose variability is probably not the issue.

I am only going to mention one cultural practice that is mandatory in my garden that may play a role in your garden.

I have to perk test every rose hole before planting. In some areas of my garden, the perk test shows the rose hole drains too fast and others too slow. I never really know until I have done the perk test. A rose hole drains too fast means that even tho' I water properly, the water almost by passes the root zone of the rose too quickly for the rose to take up the moisture it needs. When the rose hole drains too slowly, the water stays in the root zone too long and the plant can end up with root rot.

There are other cultural practices that I follow that may assist you, but I need to get outside.

Please feel free to add more information to this thread and maybe we can work towards some answers.

I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
SW Ohio River Valley (Zone 6b)
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vaporvac
Apr 7, 2020 3:39 PM CST
Lyn, I hope you didn't take my answer as a "dis". I just figured since we have that info , you could add your excellent commentary. Who could count the number of posts repsonded to only to find it was the wrong post! ?That is interesting about the perk test. I used to do that, but got lazy last year. I wondered why a newly transplanted rose wasn't doing as well as the rest until I saw a puddle of water surrounding it. Since it was already mid-fall I decided to wait until now. WOW!!! You should have heard the slurping and suction when I tried to dig it out. It was wallowing in water. Live and learn, but best to learn from others' mistakes. Now I'll always do the test. I tip my hat to you.
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
Apr 7, 2020 6:57 PM CST
Vap, no, I didn't take your post as a "dis". I should have known better than to post when my brain was a dull tool. I am glad you caught my error ... Smiling

"Slurping" ... YUK. I had the opposite problem where a rose was doing poorly because the rose hole was draining too fast. There are a lot of underground streams running under my property and I must have tapped into an area where the water just went down really fast. I was lazy that year, too. *Blush* Not any more. I test every rose hole ... Smiling

I could write a book about all of the things I've learned the hard way in this garden ... Rolling my eyes.
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
SW Ohio River Valley (Zone 6b)
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vaporvac
Apr 8, 2020 12:27 AM CST
Maybe you should! Lots of General Rose books never deal with the Nitty Gritty specifics. Or what could happen and probably will when you least expect it. Is so much on these forms that is never mentioned in many books. It seems like some of my older books are extremely detailed in that manner but the newer ones are quite General.
Name: Arturo Tarak
Bariloche, Rio Negro, Argentin (Zone 8a)
Roses Dahlias Irises Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
hampartsum
Apr 8, 2020 3:24 AM CST
<<<about all of the things I've learned the hard way in this garden

Me too, Lyn.... *Blush*

<<<It seems like some of my older books are extremely detailed in that manner but the newer ones are quite General.

I guess you ( @vaporvac) gave the answer, beyond the books themselves. Sometimes people seem not to care to get into the nitty gritty about almost anything. I've been battling all my life against the General not only about roses, but almost everything else as well. True knowledge asks for specifics, sometimes in details unsuspecting.

I was caught by the theme of this thread, 'cuz I do sometimes face (in my view) similar situations. I'm still trying to figure out why. Some of my bare root arrivals simply wont take off. I do care for them initially growing them in bags, and keep them inside(cool greenhouse) during their first initial winter, when just arrived. My bare roots arrive in the wrong moment in that sense. I keep growing them in bags then outside, for at least a season or may be even longer and still am puzzled why some, just a few go downhill and eventually die perhaps the second season. So moving away from the general, I do think that I simply didn't understand the cues given to me by each rose and assumed that they were doing ok, while they weren't. In each case the reason may have been different and I followed the logic of @farmerg: tried to find a general rule for my failure instead of looking at what I had done wrong with that particular bush. The first thing that comes to my mind are the differing ways diseases and pests affect to each plant. These have a general weakening effect, but not in the same way in each plant.
As an example, I noticed this past season with a lot of 'Jean Giono' that I got: 5 of them. They weren't the same to start with. Some were weaker plants. Inside my greenhouse they were severely attacked by aphids when they started to leaf out. I didn't pay close attention to the plants looking carefully at each one. One of the weaklings, is now a dead bush by the end of season, following the path described in the initial post here by farmerg. On the other end of the spectrum, two others have grown into tall vigorous bushes covered still in blooms. The remaining two are somewhere in between. These will require tlc if I want to keep them. I will provide tlc, because it requires my attention. Thanks to that, my attention and extra effort, is that I learn ( the hard way) what I didn't do right initially... Sighing!
Unfortunately, rose bushes have just an only final way of telling that I did things wrong....they give up their ghost... D'Oh! Hilarious!

Arturo
[Last edited by hampartsum - Apr 8, 2020 9:54 AM (+)]
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Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
Apr 8, 2020 9:07 AM CST
@vaporvac

vaporvac said:Maybe you should! Lots of General Rose books never deal with the Nitty Gritty specifics. Or what could happen and probably will when you least expect it. Is so much on these forms that is never mentioned in many books. It seems like some of my older books are extremely detailed in that manner but the newer ones are quite General.


Vap ... I don't think of myself as a writer .... Smiling Thanks for the complement.

I think I would get stuck writing a book about the different variables that can impact the viability of a rose because there are simply so many and since I have only gardened in two climates, I haven't experienced them all.

There are few generalities about roses and lots and lots of variables. It usually comes down to "it depends on the rose". Shrug!

One of my favorite Ralph Moore quotes is, "As soon as you know everything about roses, along comes a rose to prove you wrong."

@hampartsum, Arturo ... often weaker plants will eventually catch up to the stronger roses. One thought I had as I read your post is that if you have a consistent problem, change something up. For example, you might change the potting soil mix for your weaker roses rather than to continue to use the same soil mix for ALL of your new roses. Sometimes, changing just one variable can make a difference.

I know that several years ago, I moved 'Sweet Chariot' five feet from where I originally sited the rose. In its old site, the rose was just a dud. By moving it five feet, in the same area of the garden, the rose received light from a slightly different angle and the drainage was probably slightly different, but I had built my rose holes the same, fed the rose in the same way I did where I originally sited the rose, etc.

The rose took off and is now a vigorous plant.

So, if you have a consistent problem, change one variable. Change breeds change.

I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Name: Rosemary
Sacramento, CA (Zone 9b)
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reh0622
Apr 8, 2020 9:40 AM CST
Welcome! farmerG!

I had the same problem last year when buying new bareroot, and even 2 qt. roses, and it's because canker was running rampant and being spread by not disinfecting my pruning shears between cuts from affected plants before deadheading unaffected plants. I lost several. This year I am wiser, but have still seen a lot of canker coming from mostly the "bodybag" roses, but also one from a reputable source. I've read that any dieback should be cut below the dieback 1"-5", and then the pruners immediately disinfected by dipping the pruners into a jar with 70% rubbing alcohol (others simply use Lysol spray on the pruners or dip into a Clorox solution of 2 tsp. Clorox in one cup water; one rosarian says it's not enough to just spray the blades, but recommended the dip covering where the blades come together). If you don't prune the dieback to healthy cane tissue, you risk having it spread down the cane, into the bud union, and killing the entire plant.

Hope this helps as your description sounds like what I went through last year, and now some this year.

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