Summer Rose Care

Once your roses have gone through their second flush of blooms, cut them back by a third, feed them and water them well, and they will bloom again for you sometime between late September and October!

If you think of your rose as a pet rather than a plant, everything they need becomes clear!  They perform best if they are fed and watered regularly, and are happiest with a regular, proactive spraying program to protect them from pests and disease.  Right now, in dry summer weather, spider mites may be a problem.  The leaves will be drier and look mottled.  You may see some webbing if you look closely.  Since spider mites are arachnids rather than insects, most insecticides don't work on them.  However, dealing with them is easy, and cheap!  Spray the undersides of the leaves of your roses well with water.  Doesn't have to be super forceful.... I use the "shower" setting on my sprayer, and give them a good washing.  Do this for three days in a row (or as close as you can get to that), and that should take care of the problem.   The rose leaves will still be somewhat crunchy, but the spider mites will be gone.  As the leaves are naturally replaced, they will come in healthy again.  It is a good idea to do the spray thing once every week or two as a preventative measure.  (If you have a severe infestation due to being away on vacation, you can use a miticide, if spraying with water doesn't take care of the problem.)

David Austin has always stressed the importance of regular deep watering and its direct relationship to roses blooming!  Also, in order for English Roses to be expected to bloom, and re-bloom, feed them monthly during the growing season with a cup or two of balanced rose food.  (I use RoseTone by Espoma.)  Spread the food evenly on the ground around the base and drip line of the rose. Scratch it gently into the soil with a garden cultivator (claw-like tool), and then water deeply.

By spending this little bit of extra time with them during the summer, you will get great results!