Roses forum: Why are roses so stressful?

Page 1 of 4 • 1 2 3 4
Views: 3866, Replies: 65 » Jump to the end
Southern Indiana (Zone 6a)
I'll quit while I'm ahead...
Annuals Container Gardener Cactus and Succulents Frogs and Toads Growing under artificial light Dog Lover
Houseplants Garden Procrastinator Aroids Tomato Heads Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Native Plants and Wildflowers
Image
CrazedHoosier
Jul 27, 2018 6:33 PM CST
This summer, I really got into roses. I bought and planted a double knockout, miracle on the Hudson, and mister Lincoln. I also dug up some of my mom's old hybrid tea and climbing roses from a much too shady spot. For awhile, I thought I was killing it with the rose game! That was until all my roses suddenly stopped blooming, and lost all of their leaves. I gave them liquid and slow release fertilizers at this time, but neither helped. They will gain the leaves back and put on tons of new, beautiful growth, but then lose the leaves again. The leaves usually turn a sickening yellow before falling off. It is a very viscous cycle. This is so stressful for me since I don't know much about roses, and spent 100+ dollars providing care for them. I feel like a total failure and like I can't even accomplish basic rose care that convenient stores can do. What am I doing wrong? Should I give up on roses?
Maybe we should get a second opinion...
Name: Shyam
San Francisco, CA (Zone 10b)
Image
Rose_Guy1127
Jul 27, 2018 10:43 PM CST
I am sure other master rosarians here will give you better suggestions, but from what I read, I suspect is the roses are suffering from one of the following.
1) Heat stress. If roses are under direct sunlight and heat (when especially it gets sweltering and humid during summer in Indiana), for more than 6 hours, they will suffer from heat stress. The solution would be is to offer them some sort of shade. For instance, leave them exposed to sunlight for 5-6 hours and then put a porch umbrella offering shade.
2) Overwatering: Overwatering also causes the foliages to turn yellow/brown before falling off. I had my share of personal experience, which I caught it in time. You could invest in a soil moisture reader that can use in determining the ground moisture level. If it is not moist, water it. If it is moist or wet, leave it be for a day or so. But check the ground moisture daily though.
3) High dose of fertilizer: It could burn off the roots. Do you saturate the ground thoroughly before feeding fertilizer as well after feeding the fertilizer? How often do you feed fertilizer?
4) Nutrients deficiency: It can also influence the yellowing and falling of foliages. This is where the PH-moisture reading meter will come in handy.
[Last edited by Rose_Guy1127 - Jul 27, 2018 10:44 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1773828 (2)
Southern Indiana (Zone 6a)
I'll quit while I'm ahead...
Annuals Container Gardener Cactus and Succulents Frogs and Toads Growing under artificial light Dog Lover
Houseplants Garden Procrastinator Aroids Tomato Heads Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Native Plants and Wildflowers
Image
CrazedHoosier
Jul 28, 2018 9:54 AM CST
Rose_Guy1127 said:I am sure other master rosarians here will give you better suggestions, but from what I read, I suspect is the roses are suffering from one of the following.
1) Heat stress. If roses are under direct sunlight and heat (when especially it gets sweltering and humid during summer in Indiana), for more than 6 hours, they will suffer from heat stress. The solution would be is to offer them some sort of shade. For instance, leave them exposed to sunlight for 5-6 hours and then put a porch umbrella offering shade.
2) Overwatering: Overwatering also causes the foliages to turn yellow/brown before falling off. I had my share of personal experience, which I caught it in time. You could invest in a soil moisture reader that can use in determining the ground moisture level. If it is not moist, water it. If it is moist or wet, leave it be for a day or so. But check the ground moisture daily though.
3) High dose of fertilizer: It could burn off the roots. Do you saturate the ground thoroughly before feeding fertilizer as well after feeding the fertilizer? How often do you feed fertilizer?
4) Nutrients deficiency: It can also influence the yellowing and falling of foliages. This is where the PH-moisture reading meter will come in handy.


Maybe I have multiple issues going on at once? The soil here is actually dense, thick clay. It holds onto water for days. However, all but one of my roses are in a fairly dry garden that is now amended with tons of pot and top soils. They are in an area with 6.5 hours of sunlight except for one that gets 4-5 hours. I also don't have a PH tester. The fertilizer I use with them is almost always water soluble, however it isn't a rose fertilizer, it's an all-purpose. Bloomington, IN, recently just came down from a month where the average daily high was 90 degrees, and we would sustain 90-95 degrees for weeks and only drop below it towards the night. It's finally calmed down here to 75-85 degrees with 60-ish degree nights. Should I just give it a few weeks with the cooler weather?
Maybe we should get a second opinion...
Name: Peggy
(Zone 5b)
PineapplePeg
Jul 28, 2018 11:14 AM CST
Hi I'm your neighbor from Illinois. My roses have just started going the exact same thing! I just figured it was the crazy weather. This is my first year growing roses but I was thinking maybe their season was over? My soil is mostly sand. I saw some black mold so I bought the rose complete stuff and some are doing better than others. This week its been in the low 80s and last night it was in the 50s. Alot of mine do have new blooms.
[Last edited by PineapplePeg - Jul 28, 2018 11:16 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1774110 (4)
Southern Indiana (Zone 6a)
I'll quit while I'm ahead...
Annuals Container Gardener Cactus and Succulents Frogs and Toads Growing under artificial light Dog Lover
Houseplants Garden Procrastinator Aroids Tomato Heads Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Native Plants and Wildflowers
Image
CrazedHoosier
Jul 28, 2018 11:52 AM CST
PineapplePeg said:Hi I'm your neighbor from Illinois. My roses have just started going the exact same thing! I just figured it was the crazy weather. This is my first year growing roses but I was thinking maybe their season was over? My soil is mostly sand. I saw some black mold so I bought the rose complete stuff and some are doing better than others. This week its been in the low 80s and last night it was in the 50s. Alot of mine do have new blooms.


My roses were blooming very strongly in the spring, so it really may just be our insane Midwestern weather. However, my roses are shedding all their leaves again! I'm hoping this is the last time, as we cooled down quite a bit here!
Maybe we should get a second opinion...
Coastal Southern California (Zone 13a)
Image
jerijen
Jul 28, 2018 11:55 AM CST
To tell the truth, if I had to stand out in open sun in 95 deg. weather that didn't cool down, I would probably lose my leaves, too.

Tell you what, this wouldn't be a bad time of the year to deadhead the plants well, and let them rest through the balance of the heat.
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
Charter ATP Member Dog Lover Cat Lover Keeper of Poultry Keeps Horses I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Level 2 Plant Identifier Raises cows Roses Farmer Celebrating Gardening: 2015
porkpal
Jul 28, 2018 1:27 PM CST
My roses normally look pretty pitiful in the middle of the summer. All of them bloom less and smaller. Many of them drop most of their leaves, but they revive in the fall and put on a show that often exceeds their spring glory. Be patient.
Porkpal
Name: Shyam
San Francisco, CA (Zone 10b)
Image
Rose_Guy1127
Jul 28, 2018 1:29 PM CST
CrazedHoosier said:

Maybe I have multiple issues going on at once? The soil here is actually dense, thick clay. It holds onto water for days. However, all but one of my roses are in a fairly dry garden that is now amended with tons of pot and top soils. They are in an area with 6.5 hours of sunlight except for one that gets 4-5 hours. I also don't have a PH tester. The fertilizer I use with them is almost always water soluble, however it isn't a rose fertilizer, it's an all-purpose. Bloomington, IN, recently just came down from a month where the average daily high was 90 degrees, and we would sustain 90-95 degrees for weeks and only drop below it towards the night. It's finally calmed down here to 75-85 degrees with 60-ish degree nights. Should I just give it a few weeks with the cooler weather?


1) get a PH soil moisture tester on Amazon. It's cheap. Since you say the water holds on for a longer period indicates the poor drainage. My front yard planter has poor clay soil as well, I only water it deeply once a week. For your weather, I wouldn't water it more than twice. Again, you can get an accurate result with a PH moisture meter. I suspect the heat stress and over watering are the culprits behind the yellowing and falling of foliage.

2) Come Spring, I would get rid of the clay soil with a mix medium bodied soil rich in nutrients (like FoxForest Ocean soil) and cow manure.

Right now it's all about saving the poor roses from dying out.

As for fertilizer, I would recommend organic Alaskan fish fertilizer mixed in water. It won't burn the roots. And make sure you feed the fertilizer every month probably at dusk. Feeding it while sun out will burn the plant roots and foliage.
(Zone 5b)
Bookworm The WITWIT Badge Moon Gardener Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Native Plants and Wildflowers Roses
Vermiculture Frogs and Toads Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Tisha
Jul 28, 2018 3:35 PM CST
I'm in zone 5b.
I've got sand and clay.
The lake and it's wind system.
Oh, can't forget the moles!
This has been my best rose growing year so far.
Last year only 12 jap. btls.
This year about the same number of beetles.

Probably just shot myself in the foot.

Tisha

may- be we're all three on the same care schedule
Simple on a Schedule
[Last edited by Tisha - Jul 28, 2018 3:42 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1774280 (9)
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
RoseBlush1
Jul 28, 2018 11:42 PM CST
jerijen said:To tell the truth, if I had to stand out in open sun in 95 deg. weather that didn't cool down, I would probably lose my leaves, too.

Tell you what, this wouldn't be a bad time of the year to deadhead the plants well, and let them rest through the balance of the heat.


Jeri, Actually, the roses can take that kind of heat. My summer temps stay around 100F all summer long. They often end up with fried blooms, but few of my roses ever lose their foliage.

As you know, roses throw yellow leaves any time they are unhappy. Too much water, too little water or whatever. That's just the rose being a rose.

@CrazedHoosier

No, you should not give up on roses. You just need to learn what conditions they like and if you have chosen the right roses for your climate and soil, they can grow like weeds.

A few yellow leaves on a rose can be ignored, but if the plant is covered with yellow leaves, it's telling you that it's an unhappy rose.

Maybe I have multiple issues going on at once? The soil here is actually dense, thick clay. It holds onto water for days.

You do probably have several issues going on because it's usually more than one variable that plays a role in both the success of a rose or the failure of a rose.

I think you hit on the most important one when you mentioned that you planted your roses in dense clay.

All roses, no matter what class, need good drainage. If the roots stay wet too long, they get root rot and cannot function. When you plant a new rose in dense clay, or even very sandy soil, the best preventative step you can do is to do a perk test. What is a perk test ? Just fill your planting hole with water and see how fast it drains.

Rose literature says that if the hole drains within two hours, you are good to go. However, a very experienced rosarian taught me that if the rose hole drained over night, I was good to go.

If the rose hole drains too fast, the water bypasses the root mass and essentially the rose doesn't get watered. So handling sandy soils is different from dealing with dense, heavy clay soil. For now, let's talk about clay.

Once you have done your perk test and you know your rose hole drains, you can plant your rose.

When you back fill the bottom two thirds of the hole, you don't have to put in any "good stuff" in that part of your rose hole. That's where the anchor roots of the plant grow. The feeder roots, which will use the good stuff, are closer to the surface of the hole.

To amend your back fill, to have good drainage, use the native soil you dug out, but add a lot of rocks and gravel to it. Drainage is all about air, so you want different sized particles that will not decompose down in that portion of your rose hole. Make sure your rocks are not in one layer. That creates a perched water table affect and actually will slow down drainage. You can even have some of that soil come up around the root mass of the rose you are planting. It won't hurt the rose.

In the top third of your rose hole, you can still use the native soil, amended with rocks and compost or planting soil. The soil bacteria will use this material to break down into a form that the rose can take up as nutrients. In future years, you just add more of the same as this soil gradually decomposes. Just adding mulch to your roses does the same thing.

Now, you have created the conditions that your rose likes, so, if it is the right rose for your climate, it will grow. Roses grow their roots first, so you may need to wait a while before you see any new top growth. Hold off on any fertilizers until you see the new top growth. That's a sign that the root system is working ... Hurray! Then feed lightly and often the first year.

If the soil is still pretty wet when you go to water, hold off watering. You don't want to drown the roots ... Smiling

It's early enough in the season for you to dig up your roses and fix, what I think may be your biggest problem ... drainage.

You can cut the top growth back to the size of the root mass you are planting. Roses abandon any growth they cannot support.

You live in a climate where winter protection may be needed.

Since I don't have to do winter protection in my garden, I am going to ask @MargieNY to give you some tips on that part.

Things are kind of hectic for me right now, but if you have questions, I'll try and get back to you as soon as I can. There is a chance I may have to go out of town for a bit.
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Coastal Southern California (Zone 13a)
Image
jerijen
Jul 29, 2018 3:43 PM CST
Still, the hottest part of summer is a pretty good time to give the roses a thorough deadheading, and let them rest some.

Lyn -- I know your area has some terrible high temps now. Well, so do we, but I think right now your conditions are tough, and I hope you don't have to leave home.
Nebraska (Zone 5b)
Image
nippstress
Jul 29, 2018 4:17 PM CST
Like any other garden plant, healthy roses start with healthy soil and Lyn's advice is good for optimizing your soil. Gardening is also about live and learn, and roses are no exception there either. You are figuring out what works for your temperament and your yard, and that will involve some trial and error along the way. In order to figure out what's going on, try just adjusting one thing at a time. Water (enough but not too much) and good soil conditions are probably the things to get a handle on first, and the rest will take care of themselves.
In answer to your original question though, roses are only stressful if we let them be stressful. Anything can become work if we worry about it, and for me gardening is supposed to be fun. I've killed wayyyyy more plants by fussing over them than by a little benign neglect. I have over 1000 roses and I don't spray anything on them but water (and not that much of that either). Once you get some organic material into clay soil, it holds moisture better than sandy soils and ends up taking less work in the long run. Lyn's advice is great for optimizing soil, but there are a lot of easier methods for improving your soil. Mulching with organic material like leaves or shredded bark is a lazy way to add organics, and the worms will mix things in for you. Ditto on starting new garden beds by layering leaves and grass clippings on top of layers of newspapers to plant in (the "lasagne" method). By not spraying anything, the good bugs come in and take care of the bad bugs if I'm patient enough to wait it out.
Do I lose some roses with this method? Yep, but not as many as I'd lose if I were fussing over them, particularly with a lot of fertilizer. Winter by far kills more roses than anything else, and since that's out of my control (except for when I'm smart enough to pick roses that are good for my climate) I don't worry about it once I get past my annual "death march" to pull the old rose tags. Do I have imperfect foliage with spots, chewed bits, and weird brown edges at times? Yep, but they pull through fine for the most part, or they weren't destined to do well in my yard anyway. Do all my roses bloom as well as they could? I'm sure they don't, but I'm happier with them this way and that's the point of me growing them.
So take a deep breath, learn about the right balance for you in the amount of work and the amount of enjoyment you get out of the roses, and we can always help you pick out roses that don't take that much work for your area. Think of this as a learning experience and learning can be fun if you look at it that way.
Cynthia
Coastal Southern California (Zone 13a)
Image
jerijen
Jul 29, 2018 4:25 PM CST
"I've killed wayyyyy more plants by fussing over them than by a little benign neglect."

*** Now, that's the finest piece of gardening philosophy you're ever going to get.

Another is something a gardener said to me, about 30 years ago:
"Hey, sometimes, plants die. They just do. Plant something else and keep going."
Name: Margie
NY (Zone 7a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
MargieNY
Jul 29, 2018 7:23 PM CST
nippstress said:
So take a deep breath, learn about the right balance for you in the amount of work and the amount of enjoyment you get out of the roses, and we can always help you pick out roses that don't take that much work for your area. Think of this as a learning experience and learning can be fun if you look at it that way.
Cynthia


This post is one of the most, if not the most uplifting posts I have ever read in regards to gardening, in particular growing roses. I had to stop by and compliment and thank you. You approach the reality of how to deal with problems one might encounter in such a reassuring take- it- easy soothing way.

"Attitude is Everything..."

Observe, observe, observe
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
RoseBlush1
Jul 29, 2018 8:52 PM CST
jerijen said:Still, the hottest part of summer is a pretty good time to give the roses a thorough deadheading, and let them rest some.

Lyn -- I know your area has some terrible high temps now. Well, so do we, but I think right now your conditions are tough, and I hope you don't have to leave home.


Hi Jeri ..

I know this is counter intuitive, but if you want to let a rose rest, don't deadhead the rose ... Smiling A plant has one mission in life and that is to continue the species. To do that, a rose puts up a bloom to get pollinated and then forms a hip to set seed.

When we deadhead, we are interrupting that cycle, so the rose is cued to put up another bloom. If we leave it alone, the rose has completed it's mission in life and can now rest. For repeat blooming roses, after the heat has passed, we can deadhead those hips and the rose will produce more blooms so that it can get pollinated to set seed. Of course, it depends on the rose ... :smily:

No, I don't know if I am going to have to leave, yet. I've got the car gassed up and most of my fire pack in the car, but am holding off leaving because it appears that they have stopped the fire traveling uphill at the Buckhorn.

I've heard that they lifted the mandatory evacuation orders for Lewiston, then I've heard the opposite.

As long as they are still using Weaverville as an evacuation center, I guess I am OK.

@nippstress
nippstress said:Lyn's advice is great for optimizing soil, but there are a lot of easier methods for improving your soil. Mulching with organic material like leaves or shredded bark is a lazy way to add organics, and the worms will mix things in for you. Ditto on starting new garden beds by layering leaves and grass clippings on top of layers of newspapers to plant in (the "lasagne" method). By not spraying anything, the good bugs come in and take care of the bad bugs if I'm patient enough to wait it out.


I agree that there are easier methods to prepare soil for the garden. However, none of the methods you mentioned above would have worked in my garden ... Smiling

So, I have to add, "It depends ...."

In other words, there is no one "right" way to do things.

Add to that, this was my first in-ground garden and I really didn't know what I was doing ... Hilarious!

I think my gardening in less than optimal conditions taught me a lot about gardening that you just cannot learn from books or even other gardeners.

For me, understanding the physiology of the plant and what it needs has been the key to creating a garden where no garden should exist.

I totally agree with your gardening philosophy.

Do I have the garden I dreamed of having when I started ? No.

However, every year, I learn something new and I find that is what brings me lots of joy. Also, sharing what I have learned makes the experience of gardening even richer.

I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Name: Mike Stewart
Lower Hudson Valley, New York (Zone 6b)
Garden Photography I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Roses Seed Starter Container Gardener Bulbs
Peonies Clematis Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Dog Lover Cat Lover Birds
Image
Mike
Jul 30, 2018 9:06 AM CST
RoseBlush1 wrote, "I know this is counter intuitive, but if you want to let a rose rest, don't deadhead the rose ..."

I was thinking the exact same thing.
[Last edited by Mike - Jul 30, 2018 9:06 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1775528 (16)
Coastal Southern California (Zone 13a)
Image
jerijen
Jul 30, 2018 9:55 AM CST
Well, heck Nipstress, you're right, of course.

And Benign Neglect R Us.
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
RoseBlush1
Jul 30, 2018 1:46 PM CST
jerijen said:Well, heck Nipstress, you're right, of course.

And Benign Neglect R Us.


I'd like to add one caveat ...

After the rose is established. The first year you plant a rose, your goal is to give it all of the tools it needs, so a little TLC is in order. After that, benign neglect works a whole lot better than too much love ... Smiling

I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Nebraska (Zone 5b)
Image
nippstress
Jul 30, 2018 3:23 PM CST
MargieNY - you're so sweet to log on with kind words for that post. I'm glad to be helpful - I certainly have plenty of experience (i.e. mistakes) to have learned from. I can always be prodded into providing a lazy response to just about any issue, provided I can rouse myself enough to reply in the first place Whistling
Lyn you're right of course as always that the two lazy strategies I described don't work for your conditions, and I was obviously too lazy to add the necessary caveat to my statement "...for loamy clay soils in our middle plains region". Many posters in dry regions have commented that lasagna gardening isn't very effective if you don't have enough rain to break down the organic materials or enough soil critters to mix it in, and that puts an entirely different spin on gardening in extreme climates like yours. Watering and adding organic material to soil needs to be a hobby all by itself in dry climates with sandy soil, since both disappear at an astonishing rate under those conditions.
And my favorite Benign Neglect strategies are indeed more effective for established plants, but being honest in my case once roses get planted in my yard they're mostly on their own unless they bloom and need deadheading. This even goes for band plants that I put directly in the ground, but I hasten to add the obvious that I can get away with this having good soil and a reasonable amount of moisture. I plant all my roses with alfalfa, composted manure, and soil moisture crystals mixed into the original soil to help with the transition to new growth, and in my yard that seems to work as well as anything. Every year I have the ambition to use fish fertilizer or other weak water soluble fertilizers on new wimpy plants but I never seem to get around to it, and again in my garden I can get away without adding the fertilizer that folks need in sandier soil regions.
I have occasionally helped out some 6" or shorter roses by putting an inverted gallon pot with the bottom cut out over them for a gentle rabbit discouragement, but I've mostly stopped that because: a) the black plastic can also fry young plants (hence the benefits of Benign Neglect), b) foxes have moved into the region lately and they're way more efficient at rabbit discouragement, and c) I have too many young roses and I'm just too lazy to bother by this time of year. If they're going to survive in my yard, they're gonna have to be tough, and they might as well start now. If they're going to die then they should get on with it already and it'll make more space for something else next spring. That reiterates Jeri's point, "Hey, sometimes, plants die. They just do. Plant something else and keep going." I have enough roses that I must be doing something right now and then.
Cynthia
Name: Mike Stewart
Lower Hudson Valley, New York (Zone 6b)
Garden Photography I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Roses Seed Starter Container Gardener Bulbs
Peonies Clematis Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Dog Lover Cat Lover Birds
Image
Mike
Jul 30, 2018 4:51 PM CST
While I can't say I've ever killed off a rose by fussing over it too much, I will say that I don't fuss over my roses nearly as much as I used to. But I have a theory about that. When I first started out planting roses the better part of 20 years ago, like anybody I started out with only a few of them. Because of the limited number of rose bushes I had, I was much more attuned to how each plant was doing, and tended to address any problems right away. And if a few roses weren't performing well, then it made up a larger proportion of my total number of roses, so I noticed it more, and it bothered me more.

But the more roses I added to the garden, the more roses there were in bloom at any given time during the season, and the less I noticed the inevitable few that weren't performing well. For a while I still fussed a lot over them, until I realized that paying that much attention to 150+ roses had become a full-time job. And while it may have been a labor of love, it was becoming more labor and less love. So now I spend less time worrying, and more time simply enjoying the garden. I can look at many of my roses and know how I could make each one a bit better, but I'm more laid-back now (and maybe the roses are, too).
[Last edited by Mike - Jul 30, 2018 5:43 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1775847 (20)

Page 1 of 4 • 1 2 3 4

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Roses forum
Only the members of the Members group may reply to this thread.

Member Login:

[ Join now ]

Today's site banner is by mmolyson and is called "Spring is on the Way"

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.