Translate this page

Keep your roses healthy during the dragging heat

Thursday, October 11th, 2012
Issue 41, Volume 16.
Frank Brines
Consulting Rosarian Special to the Village News

Temperatures continue to be warm and it is important to adapt oneís approach to keep roses thriving as many plants (including roses) tend to shut down under extreme temperatures.

Donít prune off the blossoms from the July bloom cycle; let them fade and wither. You can remove the spent petals, but leave the rest. The plants will respond by forming fruit ‚Äď thatís what the rose hips actually are ‚Äď and those will release hormones that slow the plantís metabolism, signaling that itís time to rest, not to put energy into blooms.

By doing so, you will prevent the plant from initiating new growth which would create stress during the harshest time of the year and the tender shoots will almost certainly be damaged by the heat. Keep your roses deeply watered and alive, and fertilize only lightly.

At this time of year, itís best to shift whatever fertilizer you use to a higher level of phosphate to encourage root growth. As you probably already know, I prefer to use organic fertilizers. This is also a good time to make your second application of the year of magnesium sulphate (epsom salts): Apply three-fourths to one cup around the base of each plant, and scratch and/or water it in.

Do not forgo soil amendments such as a layer (at least 2 inches) of mulch. Itís true that such amendments provide a bit of nutrition, but not enough to kick the plant into a major growth spurt. Its main benefit is to help the soil hold moisture Advertisement
Advertisement for Berry-Bell and Hall Mortuary
[ Berry-Bell and Hall Mortuary ]
longer and spread it out in the root zone, as well as moderate soil temperatures. These are essential during dry, hot weather.

Mulch can include anything that shades the soil. I prefer to use composted mulch, available in bulk from various local suppliers, because it breaks down slowly and its nutrients are easily absorbed. Alternatively, you can also use a combination of leaves, grass clippings, coffee grounds, pine needles, etc. Just beware of creating a wet mat that prevents air circulation and can lead to sour fermentation. Pine needles are terrific because they tend to be very airy and allow water to penetrate easily, and they eventually break down to acidify the soil.

Beware of shredded wood products. I used them in a previous garden and was dismayed that it eventually bred mats of fungus that made the soil impenetrable to air and water.

Another big help during the hot weather is a drip watering system because it delivers water so efficiently to the root zone. Of course, you wouldnít want to make radical changes to your plantsí watering regime in the middle of these hot months, let alone laboring out there in the sun. Wait until the weather cools down.

When you do install the system, youíll want to survey your plants regularly to monitor the systemís output: Watch for individual plants that show signs of wilting or stress, and look closely to determine if that plantís emitters are operating properly. If the entire bed seems stressed, increase the duration of the watering time.



arrow Be the first to share your opinion on this article!

Add your Comment


Images, Formatting, or HTML is not allowed : plain text only. You may post up to 5 website addresses within your comment.


The Fallbrook Village News has tightened its' policy regarding comments.
While we invite you to contribute your opinions and thoughts, we request that you refrain from using vulgar or obscene words and post only comments that directly pertain to the specific topic of the story or article.
Comments that are derogatory in nature have a high likelihood for editing or non-approval if they carry the possibility of being libelous.
The comment system is not intended as a forum for individuals or groups to air personal grievances against other individuals or groups.
Please, no advertising or trolling.
In posting a comment for consideration, users understand that their posts may be edited as necessary to meet system parameters, or the post may not be approved at all. By submitting a comment, you agree to all the rules and guidelines described here.
Most comments are approved or disregarded within one business day.

RSS FeedFacebookTwitter

Advertisement for Stellar Solar


Most Commented

Reach Local Customers

The Fallbrook Village News The Fallbrook Village News
760-723-7319 - 1588 S. Mission Rd. Suite 200, Fallbrook CA 92028
All contents copyright ©2015
About Us
Earthquake Information
Business Listings
Contact Us
Letter to the Editor
Report a website error
Online Digital Edition
RSS Feeds