Roses forum→Knockout Roses Dying

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Woodstock GA
rjmctiernan
Sep 14, 2020 8:13 AM CST
Any idea why my knockout rose bush is dying? Has been going strong for over a year and recently starting turning brown. I don't trim it as often as I should. Thoughts on how to save it?
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Name: Mike Stewart
Lower Hudson Valley, New York (Zone 6b)
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Mike
Sep 14, 2020 12:33 PM CST
Here are a few observations that I hope may help:

(1) It's time to cut out the dead, woody, brown canes that have no green growth, leaves, or blooms on them.

(2) If you want your rose bush to continuously bloom, you need to dead-head the flowers after they bloom, so that they don't form hips (the orange-red-yellow fruit that looks like little tomatoes or cherries). Do this during the spring and summer until mid-September (then you can let hips form). The formation of hips takes up energy that could otherwise be spent on producing flowers.

As for other matters:

(3) Roses need regular watering if there is not sufficient rain; they are thirsty plants. Check to see how moist or dry the ground is by pushing your fingers into the soil. If it's dry, give it a deep drink of water by placing the hose by the base of the plant, rather than scattered, light sprinkling which does not penetrate the soil to the roots.

(4) It looks like the rose is planted in red clay soil, which is common in Georgia. When you dug the hole to plant the rose, did you replace part of the soil with compost or manure, black garden soil (store bought), and/or peat moss? If not, a rose will struggle to thrive long-term in red clay, especially if it hardens and prevents water from reaching the roots. You can dig up the plant in late fall when the rose goes dormant to replace some of the soil by mixing up some of the clay with black soil, compost and peat moss, and replanting it.
[Last edited by Mike - Sep 14, 2020 5:34 PM (+)]
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Name: Paul
Utah (Zone 5b)
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Paul2032
Sep 14, 2020 12:36 PM CST
Great advice Mike I agree
Paul Smith Pleasant Grove, Utah
Name: David Tillyer
New York City (Zone 7b)
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BigAppleRoseGuy
Sep 14, 2020 1:54 PM CST
What Mike said!
Name: Ken Wilkinson
N.E. GA. (Cornelia) (Zone 7b)
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KenNEGA
Sep 14, 2020 7:01 PM CST
Exactly what Mike said, BUT, Sunny Knock out (which you have) will never grow and be as great as the other Knock Out varieties. It is the weakest of the Knock Out family. I have a bed of 4 varieties of Knock outs in front of my porch and Sunny Knock out is always lagging behind and is the only one to get any fungal disease. This bed is 6 yrs old and I've given up on Sunny Knock Out. It will be dug up this winter and replaced by Double Red Knock Out.
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This is the Knock Out bed this past spring. Sunny Knock Out is the small bush in the middle. Pink Knock Out is at the far end. Blushing Knock Out is at the far right. Two regular Knock Out's behind everything.
It's a rose!!! It has nothing to do with life and death.
Woodstock GA
rjmctiernan
Sep 14, 2020 7:30 PM CST
Thank you all so much for the help! I trimmed down the Rose Bush very well today. Do you suggest adding any specific fertilizer to help it along?
Name: Ken Wilkinson
N.E. GA. (Cornelia) (Zone 7b)
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KenNEGA
Sep 15, 2020 6:44 PM CST
I would use Black Kow or Mushroom Compost on it. You should be able to get a nice bloom cycle before it gets cold and shuts the roses down for the winter.
It's a rose!!! It has nothing to do with life and death.

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