Tips on Growing Roses

Growing gorgeous roses is quite simple if you start with tough, robust varieties and keep them well watered and well fed. Then for even better results, you can pay more attention to pest control, pruning and general care.

The basics of rose care

1. Keep the plants moist at all times but never allow the roots to sit in water.
2. Feed generously and frequently.
3. Keep pests to a minimum (this is usually not a problem if you start with a strong variety and keep it well watered and fed).
4. Prune back once a year, keep the area weed free and ensure 4-6 hours of sun per day.

When your roses arrive

1. Submerge the roots in lukewarm water for 12-24 hours. If you can’t plant on arrival, leave the plants in our box and lightly sprinkle the roots every 2-3 days. Never let the roots dry out.
2. Plant your roses as soon as possible for best results. If you can’t plant in the final location immediately, temporarily plant into containers.

Planting your roses

If you have not already soaked your roses in lukewarm water, do so for 12-24 hours prior to planting.

1. Choose a site that has 4-6 hours of sun per day and well drained soil.
2. Dig a hole large enough to easily fit the roots of the plants.
3. Mix some rose food into the soil prior to filling the hole (follow
the packet’s recommended dosage)
4. Trim off any broken roots or stems then hold the plant in place and fill the hole. Tread the soil reasonably firmly.
5. Soak the soil with at least one or two buckets of water.

General rose care


Roses are generally very hardy and, although they will survive drought. They will not thrive. For best results, keep the soil moist at all times. If the foliage is wet overnight (especially in cooler weather) the plants will become stressed and much more susceptible to diseases.


Roses are heavy feeders and require 2 or 3 feeds during the season. Apply the first in Spring before the leaves are fully open and then again in December and Jan, following the packet’s dose recommendation. Do not feed in March because the plants should be hardening off for Winter at that time rather than producing soft new growth which is cold sensitive.


Why we prune roses

The main aim or pruning is to remove the old wood, (that will no longer flower) and encourage the development of young, vigorous and healthy stems. Pruning also helps to keep roses to a desired shape and manageable size.

When to prune

The best time is June to July whilst the plants are dormant.

How hard should you prune?

Hard pruning: Cut stems back to only 3 or 4 buds. Hard pruning is recommended for newly planted roses or to rejuvenate neglected roses. It results in larger, but fewer, blooms.

Moderate pruning: Stems are cut back to half their length, recommended for all established roses.

Light pruning: Stems are cut back to two-thirds their length, so that the main stems are merely tipped. This method is used with very vigorous varieties. Light pruning generally results in a profusion of flowers.

Step by step pruning

1. Remove all dead, old or diseased stems.
2. Remove any old branches (they’ll look dull and grey whilst new growth is red/green and shiny). Cut the stem off at the bud union.
3. Cut out all very thin stems (less than pencil thickness) and branches that cross over each other or are crowding the center of the plant.
4. If there are any shoots growing from below the bud union (i.e. “suckers”) remove these also
5. Only healthy branches now remain. Prune these to the length required depending on whether you are pruning hard or light.

Jane Lane Nurseries

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