Without proper care in the fall, rose bushes may not survive the winter. The northern Utah region can get pretty chilly, and if you want to make sure you see blooms next spring, you need prepare your roses for the cold weather months.
Not sure how to put your rose bushes to bed for the winter? Below, the professional team at Millcreek Gardens explains the steps to take.
Remove Damaged Leaves
Extensive pruning isn’t recommend in the fall, but removing dead, diseased and damaged leaves from your rose bushes is wise. Be sure to use pruners to clip the leaves off, however, as pulling them creates small tears in the stem, and those can be entry points for disease.
Trim Extra Long Canes
Heavy winds can whip the canes of your rose bushes around, and if the stems are super long, they can suffer damage. Cut yours down to about four feet or so in length to avoid this, then tie the canes loosely together to keep them from easily moving when snow covers the bushes.
Clean Up the Garden Beds
Once you have taken care of the leaves and canes, rake up any plant debris from underneath the bushes. Fungal diseases that affect roses can overwinter on the garden bed litter, and removing the material can reduce the risk of problems and help ensure your roses bloom beautifully in the spring.
Apply a Layer of Mulch
Mulching not only provides plants with valuable nutrients, it also acts as insulation for their roots in the winter. To protect your roses, put down about 8 to 12 inches of high-quality mulch around the base of the bushes. Take extra care to cover the graft union well, as it is often susceptible to winter injury.
Caring for Climbing Roses
Climbing roses require a bit of special attention, as their canes are in danger of damage from strong winter winds. To provide them with the protection they need, bend the canes and lay them on the ground. Secure them with stakes or tie them together, place a piece of burlap on top, then cover the canes with mulch.
Do you have questions about caring for rose bushes? The friendly and knowledgeable plant experts at Millcreek Gardens, a leading northern Utah garden center, are happy to provide answers and advice.
In addition, Millcreek Gardens is stocked with all of the gardening supplies you need to take care of your indoor and outdoor plants. To shop our extensive selection, or to simply chat about rose bushes with our expert staff, stop by our garden center in Salt Lake City, Utah, today.