Dan's Garden: Roses

BISMARCK, N.D. - Well, it’s getting to be time to cover your tender roses. Things like Hybrid Teas and Floribunda roses aren’t really hearty to our lower temperatures here. There are a few ways you can do it.

First, I always spray a fungicide. I like the copper fungicide. I spray it on the canes, all the branches, so when you do cover them they don’t get moldy over the winter. Some people like to use these rose cones made out of Styrofoam and they will work, it’s not really my favorite way, but if you do use you have to cut your rose bush your plant quite a bit to make it fit into these cones.

Sometimes they will stuff leaves or grass or crumpled up news clippings, or they might even use a rose collar. You can get these and put it around and fill it up with leaves, but that’s not really tall enough for me.

I like to dig a trench. This is one way and bury them completely. The University of Minnesota calls it the Minnesota tip method, and you can take the rose and you lay it down, plus mine is in the pot. Just cover it with dirt and in the spring dig it up. I usually mark it with a couple of stakes or tie some twine on and let it hang out so you can find it.

A third way to cover your roses, and my favorite way, put chicken wire around the roses, cut them back a little bit and use fungicide and fill it up with leaves. Be generous and be way deep, fat and wide and it works. I would say every time they should come through. But your hearty roses from Canada shouldn’t really have to be covered like this. But the hybrid teas and the Floribunda’s do.

So a few tips on how to get your roses thru the winter.

Next week we hope to talk about spruce tops for your plants and planters. Until then, good gardening.