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Avatar for PitSmoker
May 6, 2020 10:53 AM CST
Lowell MA, Zone 6; near border
1) Novice here.
2) Bought the plants from Lowes. Please don't shoot me.
3) When in doubt, please & kindly see point 1, above. Smiling
4) I genuinely appreciate your time, greatly.

So, I bought three small rose bushes in plastic pots at Lowes. They are cut roses; one can apparently get 4-6' in height.

They are Red (Chrysler); Yellow (Sunbright) and White (Sorry-- don't recall.) They were bare sticks when I bought them (no leaves; haven't opened the pots yet. I assume they're bare root too, but not sure.) They had wax all over their stems-- I assume as a protectant. Two of the three are sprouting nicely, but the third... not sure if it'll make it.

Anyway, I hope that helps someone identify what I'm working with here.

When I buy my wife roses, I buy all three colors, and that was partially the point of this purchase. Smiling I would like to plant these together, but when I looked at the directions they want to be about 4' apart from each other.

I would like them to grow to be intertwined-- like, twisting & growing together in a triad of colors. What are the risks of planting them (much) closer? I get that the roots and branches will compete for light & space, but... is there really a risk, other than the fact that I will likely have a 'smaller' shrub when compared to the three bushes, separate & apart would be?

Thank you again for your time.
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May 6, 2020 11:01 AM CST
Name: Big Bill
Livonia Michigan (Zone 6a)
GROW ORCHIDS!!!
Bee Lover Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Orchids Region: Michigan Hostas Growing under artificial light
Echinacea Critters Allowed Cat Lover Butterflies Birds Region: United States of America
At least 4', I would plant them 5' apart.
Taught classes on Orchids and Orchid growing and led hundreds of bird walks. Retired Wildlife Biologist.
Avatar for porkpal
May 6, 2020 11:57 AM CST
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX (Zone 9a)
Cat Lover Charter ATP Member Keeper of Poultry I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Dog Lover Keeps Horses
Roses Plant Identifier Farmer Raises cows Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Ideas: Level 2
Planting in a group is not idea, but it also won't necessarily injure your roses. As long as you give the composite shrub plenty of space, you may be able to achieve the effect you are seeking. Good luck and welcome to the forum!
Porkpal
Avatar for PitSmoker
May 6, 2020 2:05 PM CST
Lowell MA, Zone 6; near border
Thank you both!
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May 6, 2020 2:20 PM CST
Name: Big Bill
Livonia Michigan (Zone 6a)
GROW ORCHIDS!!!
Bee Lover Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Orchids Region: Michigan Hostas Growing under artificial light
Echinacea Critters Allowed Cat Lover Butterflies Birds Region: United States of America
Welcome
Taught classes on Orchids and Orchid growing and led hundreds of bird walks. Retired Wildlife Biologist.
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May 6, 2020 4:17 PM CST
Name: Seth n Sam .....
W.V. (Zone 6a)
If they are in plastic bags on the bottom. You need pull away the saw dust and wood chips. Soak them for a few hours. Then plant them. The wood chips and saw dust have nothing in it to help the Rose's. And they packed the roots up tight.
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May 6, 2020 4:19 PM CST
Name: Seth n Sam .....
W.V. (Zone 6a)
The red one is Chrysler Imperial and smells astonishing. Super strong scent. But it will only get about 3.5 foot tall. Depending on your zone. Mine is 3rd year and is just a hair over 3ft tall. And 2.5 feet wide.
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May 6, 2020 4:43 PM CST
Coastal Southern California (Zone 13a)
Sunbright is an older Hybrid Tea Rose, that's described as being "bushy" ... so maybe it will carry foliage fairly far down. That's always nice.

It's billed as "hardy to Z6," so should be OK where you are ... but it could need help in a harsh winter.

Chrysler Imperial will produce big blooms on long stems, good for cutting for the house ... and as noted, fragrant ... that sweet Damask-y fragrance that we think of as "rose."

Curious to know what the white is. Has it a tag?

Oh, 3-ft. apart is "ok." 4-ft. is probably better, but if your area doesn't have a lot of fungal disease, well, should look pretty that way.
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May 6, 2020 5:41 PM CST
Name: seil
St Clair Shores, MI (Zone 6a)
Garden Photography Region: Michigan Roses
You know...We have always been told to plant 3 ft. on center apart. I don't know why but that's always been the rule of thumb. Now I see this 4 ft. apart stuff and I wonder about that. David Austin ALWAYS says that if you want a fuller look to plant 3 roses in an 18 inch triangle. Now if you can grow Austins, which notoriously get fairly large and bushy, in an 18 inch triangle why do you have to plant 4 ft. apart or even 3 ft. apart?

I'm in MI zone 6. My roses NEVER get as large as predicted because I have to whack them to just above ground most springs. I plant mine around 2 ft. apart and I don't see any problems with that. As long as I have access to get to them to work on them I'm fine with that spacing.
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May 6, 2020 5:52 PM CST
Name: Sulli
Philadelphia (Zone 7a)
hi there, i love your idea and while i'm no rose expert and probably plant everything way too close together, your triad idea made me think of this article and her rose sculptures
https://www.gardensillustrated...
Avatar for bart2018
May 8, 2020 4:40 AM CST
Tuscany, Italy
Thanks for this link,SulliO!
Avatar for PitSmoker
May 8, 2020 6:13 AM CST
Lowell MA, Zone 6; near border
Phenomenal information here-- thank you, each and all! Forgive my delay-- in the middle of finals for school.

Maybe I'll take it on as an experiment.... if so, I'll try to post progress/results.

@Weluvroses, thanks for the info about the sawdust and filler-- I have wondered about that. It will go into the compost.

I lost the tag on the white one, @jerijen. John F Kennedy--MAYBE. I forget if I purchased that one or another instead. One white that I looked at was not a cut rose so I put it back. Can't recall.

@SeiMlI, thanks for the info about the Austins and 18" triangle-- that was much more my thought. Right or wrong, 4' seems....cavernous for what I'm going for here.

@SulliO, that's an extraordinary link and article, thank you very much. (She's clearly got more time than I have!) I' doubt my canes will get that far too quickly, but some gentle, loose zip ties around a stake n the center to be adjusted annually might help me train these. Thank you!

Thank you again, all-- I really appreciate your assistance!
Last edited by PitSmoker May 8, 2020 10:50 AM Icon for preview
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May 8, 2020 7:24 AM CST
Name: Seth n Sam .....
W.V. (Zone 6a)
seilMI said:You know...We have always been told to plant 3 ft. on center apart. I don't know why but that's always been the rule of thumb. Now I see this 4 ft. apart stuff and I wonder about that. David Austin ALWAYS says that if you want a fuller look to plant 3 roses in an 18 inch triangle. Now if you can grow Austins, which notoriously get fairly large and bushy, in an 18 inch triangle why do you have to plant 4 ft. apart or even 3 ft. apart?

I'm in MI zone 6. My roses NEVER get as large as predicted because I have to whack them to just above ground most springs. I plant mine around 2 ft. apart and I don't see any problems with that. As long as I have access to get to them to work on them I'm fine with that spacing.


I just did my new DA order in triangles in my new bed. I staggered them. 3ft centers. That's also how I did my raised bed at the old house. I had 12 in a 10x10. Had zero problems. I even had Grandiflora in with DAs. I like when the bushes mix somewhat. I had Chrysler Imperial Roses in with my Molineux and they looked gorgeous together. And had Dick Clark on the other side mixing in.
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May 8, 2020 10:28 AM CST
Zone 9, Sunset Zone 9 (Zone 9b)
Roses
Everything depends upon location, rose and climate conditions.

DA roses here get HUGE! Again, I am zone 9, so things generally get bigger here.

I love how DA states that Princess Alexandra of Kent is good for being planted in a pot. That pot size here would have to be the size of a bath tub. She got over 6 feet tall and 5 feet wide for a one year old own root plant! Pretty amazing! In a pot? Not that rose for where I live. For here, I take what DA says the size of a rose is supposed to be and then at least double it. That gives me a much better idea of how big the DA rose will actually get where I am located, with very few (can count on one hand with fingers left over) exceptions.
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May 8, 2020 2:14 PM CST
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Garden Ideas: Level 1
seilMI said: David Austin ALWAYS says that if you want a fuller look to plant 3 roses in an 18 inch triangle. Now if you can grow Austins, which notoriously get fairly large and bushy, in an 18 inch triangle why do you have to plant 4 ft. apart or even 3 ft. apart?


Seil ... the three roses advice was from DA's book about English roses. He was breeding for scent and bloom form, but really didn't breed for healthy plants.

In England, his roses did not grow into large roses and the roses marketed in the early years, were spindly unhealthy looking plants. He made the suggestion to plant them close together so that as they grew, the roses would look garden worthy.

PitSmoker .... you can probably follow Seil's spacing plan because both of you have a shorter growing season and your roses won't get as large as the ones found in more gentle climates.
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
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