Roses flourish beautifully in the right conditions, and the proper balance of soil “ingredients” is important for growing rose bushes. While these flowers are not frail, caring for roses can mean a lot of preparation work before you get to enjoy their beauty. Roses need fertile soil which is well drained, high in organic matter, and has specific Ph. Different types of roses may prefer slightly different Ph, but a Ph between 6 and 7 works for all roses.
To prepare the soil, check the drainage. Try watering the soil and measure the length of time it takes the water to drain. If the soil doesn’t drain well, other options to continue rose gardening may be to construct a raised bed, or to try container gardening.
Fertile soil has a lot of organic materials in it. To add organic material, there are many chemical and organic fertilizers available. In the past, many chemical fertilizers have been bad for the environment, but there are now several eco-friendly fertilizers on the market. Ask for one at the local garden centre. There is much debate over chemical versus organic fertilizers, and advice and tips are available from anyone. It’s best for each gardener to do their own research and choose the best fertilizer for their own garden. After all, sometimes organic fertilizers and homemade weed killers will work the best, and sometimes chemical fertilizers and weed killers will.
Another option which will add organic materials to the soil is compost. With compost, it might also be necessary to add phosphate to control the Ph. Another consideration when adding compost is to ensure that no diseased leaves or stems went into the compost. Unless the compost reached a high enough temperature to kill it, the fungus could have survived on the leaves and in the compost, and can attack the new plants. Compost is an easily available, environmentally friendly method of adding nutrients to your soil.
As unpleasant as it may sound or smell, manure is also a great way to add organic material to a garden. A layer of cow or mushroom manure adds many needed materials for the growth of flowers. Don’t forget to wear gardening gloves!
Keeping the soil fertile and healthy for roses can require the reapplication of fertilizers. Once you choose a fertilizer that is right for you, whether it be an organic fertilizer, a chemical fertilizer, or some combination of the two, you need to decide when to apply it. One rose gardening tip is to apply a thin layer of fertilizer weekly during the spring, and mulch during the summer. A fall fertilizer application may or may not be necessary, depending on the climate of the region. In a warmer climate, winter gardening and soil care may be necessary, as flowers may bloom year round, which leaves no time for the soil to take a break. Winter rose care elsewhere may consist of covering the ground and soil with mulch, protecting the rose bush while allowing the soil to regenerate.