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The following calendar is provided as a general guideline for growing roses.  It is not intended to be a list of 'strict' tasks.  Many members develop their own 'acceptable practices' according to their own desired results.  For recommendations to resolve any specific problems you are invited to contact one of our Consulting Rosarians listed on this web site.

JANUARY   
Attend a pruning clinic.

Keep tetanus vaccine up-to-date.  Bacterium found in soil, enters through lacerations.

Protect yourself with sturdy gloves and long sleeves.

Clean, sharpen, and oil pruning tools:  bypass pruning shears, bypass loppers, pruning saw.

Begin pruning modern roses.

Do not prune once-blooming OGR’s – old garden roses.

Take cuttings to propagate from those roses that are out of patent. (introduced 20+ years ago)

Clean up debris beneath plants and dispose of it in trash.  Do not compost it!

Apply dormant oil spray after pruning but before new growth appears.  Spray the ground as well as the rose bush to suffocate overwintering insect eggs and fungal spores.

Move or transplant a rose bush to better location in garden if desired.

Dig and remove unwanted roses and, if free of virus and/or root gall, pot up for April plant sale or put in black bag for January or February meeting’s raffle.

Shovel prune (dig up and dispose of) plants with evidence of crown gall disease.

Disinfect tools with Lysol spray or solution of bleach or rubbing alcohol after cuts to gall-diseased bush.

Buy new roses bareroot, and soak roots 24 hours or overnight before planting.  If need to hold bareroot plants longer, add teaspoon of bleach to water.
 
FEBRUARY
Select and plant bareroot roses.

Continue to prune roses and finish your pruning by mid to end of the month.

Clean up debris beneath plants and dispose of it in trash.

Weed as necessary and apply pre-emergent herbicide or apply mulch to keep weeds from sprouting.

Apply dormant oil spray after pruning only if no new growth has appeared.  Spray will burn tender new growth.

Scatter alfalfa meal or pellets around each bush for rains to soak it in.

Apply a slow release fertilizer such as timed release or organic product as new growth appears.

If you plan to spray with fungicide, February is the time to begin your spray program to combat fungal diseases such as black spot and powdery mildew.

Try propagation by taking cuttings while pruning--before canes have new leaves.

Healthy roses removed from your garden can still be potted and labeled for our April plant sale.      

MARCH
Apply a complete, balanced fertilizer such as timed release or organic product as new growth appears if not already done end of February.    Ex.  N-P-K #’s 8-8-8

Weed as necessary and apply a 2-4 inch thick layer of compost or mulch to keep more weeds from sprouting and to conserve moisture.

Improve air flow within the rose by finger pruning (rubbing off) new sprouts growing toward the center of the plant or in an unwanted direction.

Aphids can be blasted off with water until beneficial insects arrive. If needed, use insecticidal soap or other non-toxic material to control aphids.

Beneath oak trees, look for fruit-tree leaf roller worms descending onto roses.  Handpick and squish or drop in bucket of soapy water.

During moist cool conditions, fungal diseases such as black spot, powdery mildew and rust may occur.  Remove affected leaves.  Fungal spray program prevents disease but does not cure disease already present.

Install or repair your drip irrigation system

APRIL
Check irrigation system.  Install or repair drip system to supplement rainfall.

Weed and apply mulch to suppress weeds and conserve moisture if not done in March.

If using spray program, continue with fungicide spray program until warm, dry weather arrives.

Insects arrive:
 - Aphids can be blasted off with water until beneficial insects arrive or use insecticidal soap.
 - Oak leaf roller worms, aka fruit-tree-leaf roller worms, drop down on silken threads onto buds and tender new leaf growth.  They can be squished by hand.  Look for leaf curling and webbing signaling their arrival.
 - Hoplia beetles feed on light-colored rose petals for about a month end of April through May.  Wear gloves and pick them off and crush them.

If you notice a “blind shoot”, not developing a bud and stopping growth, trim off below next set of leaflets to stimulate it to produce a bud.

Prepare for rose shows:  Use your fingers to disbud roses while buds are still small.
 For sprays, remove the central bud.
 For one-bloom-per stem, remove the small side buds.

MAY
Continue to pull weeds and apply mulch to suppress future weeds and to conserve moisture.

Begin supplemental irrigation as rains wane.

Evidence of powdery mildew, blackspot, and rust may continue until dry, warm weather occurs.  Pick off affected leaves and clean up fallen petals and leaves from beneath the rose.  Apply fungicide if you follow a spray program.

May Insects include:
 - Hoplia beetle – often seen on white and or pastel roses.  Squish ‘em.
 - Aphids – hose them off or use insecticidal soap.

Deadhead – remove spent blooms by clipping just above 5-leaflet leaves on a sturdy stem; can be cut lower if wish to keep bush shorter or if stem is twiggy and skinny and not able to support next bloom, especially a cluster of flowers.

Fertilize after first bloom cycle *making sure well-watered before and after* applying a balanced fertilizer, such as 10-10-10.

JUNE
When temperatures start to warm, water early in day.

Check your drip emitters and set your irrigation frequency according to your water utility’s drought guidelines.

Watch newly planted bushes for signs of stress, mainly from heat or lack of water while they are getting established. A slow soak that wets the entire root area is best.

Apply mulch to the soil to retain moisture.

Applying water with a hose allows for inspection of your bushes, quick notice of plants in decline, and the opportunity to spray bushes, especially the undersides of leaves, to prevent spider mite infestations.

Evidence of the presence of spider mites is bronzing of lower leaves of roses and webbing on the undersides of the leaves.  Spray the undersides of leaves with a water wand to discourage mites. Apply miticides or insecticidal soap if spider mites are detected.  Continue monitoring through the fall months.

Trim spent flowers (deadhead) from roses.

No fertilizing needed until the end of August.

It's time to stop and smell the roses.  It’s your reward for growing good rose bushes.

JULY and AUGUST
Take 5 minutes: Walk through all of the garden every day if possible and look for weeds, pest damage, plants that aren’t getting enough water, anything out of the ordinary. It’s easier to correct problems before they get out of control.

Renew mulch in garden beds.  A layer of mulch that is 2 to 4 inches deep protects the soil, keeping it from baking and drying, and it conserves water.  Keep it a couple of inches away from the main stem of plants to prevent crown rot.

Continue to trim spent flowers from roses.

No fertilizing needed until the end of August when beginning to prepare plants to produce bloom for October rose shows.  Apply fertilizer after watering well the day before.

If planning to exhibit roses, count back 6-8 weeks from date of fall show, and prune a bit more stem than just deadheading.  Prune to a sturdy cane to support fuller bloom or cluster of blooms. As flowers develop, pick off side buds to prepare for an exhibition of a single bloom per stem.  If you miss that, pick out the central terminal bud and prepare for a beautiful cluster of blooms.

SEPTEMBER
Continue cutting back spent blooms for more flowers.

Rake up fallen rose leaves and petals, but do not add to compost pile.

Continue monitoring for fungal diseases, spider mites, and insect pests.

Decide now whether to leave your rose bushes to form rose hips that will turn orange or red to provide autumn color and food for garden birds.

Late summer and autumn is best time to prune once-blooming rambling and climbing roses.

Roses moved now or planted now have two months to establish roots before winter.

Toward end of September, begin taking hardwood cuttings from your roses to “clone” your plants.  Choose a garden bed, dig a trench deep enough for only about 1/3 of each stem above ground.  Label each cutting and keep moist until rains arrive.

Each year you can evaluate roses for the American Rose Society.  Everyone can participate in the annual Roses in Review (RIR) process.  To do the survey online, go to the ARS website at www.rose.org  OR use this link:  http://www.stsrv.com/rir/rirsplsh.htm

OCTOBER
    
Decrease nitrogen in your fertilizer by using 0-10-10, or stop applying fertilizer.

Adjust irrigation to fall watering schedule as cooler weather returns.

Anchor long canes in climbing and shrub type roses to prevent wind injury.

Continue to cut back spent blooms or simply remove old petals and allow hips to form.

Rake up fallen rose leaves and petals, but do not add to compost pile.

Continue monitoring for fungal diseases, spider mites, and insect pests.

Roses moved now or planted now have a month or so to establish roots before winter. Send for rose catalogs and order new roses!

NOVEMBER     
Discontinue applying fertilizer.

Use supplemental irrigation if fall rains are insufficient.

Tag roses you plan to remove now.  Give them a second look at end of month.  Be hard-hearted when it comes to underperforming bushes.

Harvest rose hips after the first frost to take seeds for planting.

Send for rose catalogs and order new roses!

DECEMBER
Permit rose hips to remain on the shrub as food for overwintering birds and color interest in the winter garden.

Acquire the proper tools for rose pruning and winter chores:  bypass pruning shears, leather gloves, large loppers, pruning saw, kneeling pad or knee pads.

Clean, sharpen, and oil older tools on hand.

Purchase dormant oil spray.

Check which roses to be dug and removed from garden.  (If free of virus and/or root gall, pot up for April plant sale or put in black bag for January raffle.)

Good time to relocate roses.

Good time to repot root-bound plants in containers.

Plan to attend the annual pruning demo at Eisley Nursery third Saturday of January at either 10 am or 2 pm or both!

May start annual pruning the last week of December in lower elevations.

Do not prune once-blooming OGR’s – old garden roses.

Plan for additional roses – place orders online or obtain catalogs from:
 Burlington Rose Nursery - http://burlingtonroses.com/
 Certified Roses - http://www.certifiedrose.com/catalog.html
 Chamblee’s Rose Nursery - www.chambleeroses.com/
 David Austin Roses - www.davidaustinroses.com/american/Cat.asp
 Edmunds’ - www.edmundsroses.com
 Heirloom Nursery- www.heirloomroses.com
 High Country Roses – www.HighCountryRoses.com
 Jackson & Perkins -  www.jacksonandperkins.com/roses/c/JP-Roses/
 Regan Nursery - www.regannursery.com/
 Rogue Valley Roses – www.roguevalleyroses.com
 The Antique Rose Emporium www.antiqueroseemporium.com/mailinglist
 Witherspoon Rose Culture – www.WitherspoonRose.com

Pre-order from Eisley Nursery Wish List and get phoned in December when bushes first arrive to pick out the best ones.

Renew membership in Gold Country Rose Society