I adore roses, they are my favourite of all plants and as such, I have a fair few in my garden. And by a fair few, I mean at least twenty at last count, and I may have overlooked one or two. I must get back out and check!
As if I need more, I now have a plan to put more in. I am excited!
I have a little bed near the back of the garden that has yet to be given a purpose that I am happy with. It’s been a bed for vegetables, a bed for the children to plant a few annuals and a bed for the kids to just dig and play round in. Currently it’s looking pretty sad, so I need to do something with it. You may have seen my recent post about getting a new bench, and as that’s near to this bed, it makes me all the more determined to revamp it and get the top of the garden looking pretty. I also hate to think of any space being wasted out there, so I must use it wisely.
As such, I have decided to make it into a rose garden. As I have mentioned, I have plenty of roses dotted all around the garden already, but I thought it’d be nice to have several all in one bed. It will add such gorgeous colours and scents to that part of the garden and it will offer me a fabulous excuse to buy more roses!
So today I thought I’d get some of my thoughts and plans around it clear in my head, and by doing so I’ll share them with you and maybe I can tempt you into creating a rose garden….
There are a huge variety available to buy, so take time to get used to the different ones, from shrubs to climbers, to hybrid tea roses to florubundas, there are plenty to choose from. That’s all part of the fun!
Roses are hardy and quite easy to keep, but they are prone to black spot. You need to cut this away when you see it and don’t let the leaves fall to the ground as the black spot is just going back into the roots then. Make sure that when you water around the base of the roses, rather than from above, and they’ll ideally be in well drained soil in a relatively sunny spot. Baking soda and water can help to prevent black spot and I’ve also heard milk and water can be effective, though I have not tried this one out.
Cut back roses hard in early spring, after the frosts and cold weather. You’ll be amazed at how quickly they come back!
David Austin roses are my personal favourites. In my experience, some varieties can be quite weak stemmed for the first year or two, so use stakes to support flowers where needed and over time and cutting them back, they will strengthen.
For me, roses are all about the scents and they can all smell differently so check out the scent descriptions before buying, and ideally, go and smell them!
Consider a mix of colours, as roses come in just about any colour you can think of. So you might want to create a bed full of similar shades, or you might want to go for splashes of lots of colours. Whatever works for you.
Do read the labels for types of roses and size and spread. I have a few rambling and climbing roses dotted around my garden, but it’ll be shrub roses that I’ll be putting into this bed and I’ll try to go for similar size ones.
Consider a good mix of repeat flowering roses or check when they each flower so that you will always have several in bloom at any one time.
Think about companion plants. Around the roses I intend to plant salvias as I have read that they can help roses to stay healthy, and I quite fancy dotting a few succulents around simply because I like them.
Enjoy the whole process. I am now excited to prepare the bed for planting, I can’t wait for the fun of selecting the roses and then I am already looking forward to sitting out there near to them enjoying my morning cuppa.
Will you be creating a rose bed? If you like roses too, do tell me your favourites, I’d love to know.