Bands from Heirloom Roses

humble5February 16, 2013

Yesterday I received my roses from Heirloom and I'm very unimpressed. I've ordered from them in the past so I knew they would be small but one of the bands doesnt even have leaves on it. This may be my last order from them.

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Tessiess, SoCal Inland, 9b, 1272' elev

What variety is the leafless rose? It may just be dormant as it is still pretty darn cold in Oregon. Small is another matter though.

In my garden I have numerous roses that haven't broken dormancy yet and don't have a single leaf, such as R. primula (from Pickering), Harison's Yellow (from Greenmantle), R. arkansana and R. blanda (from Forest Farm), and Charles Metroz (from Eurodesert).


    Bookmark   February 16, 2013 at 1:15PM
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I just posted a similar comment under the Antique Rose thread - My Babies are Here.

This was my first order from Heirloom, and my 3rd mail order ever. My bareroots from David Austin and S&W were fabulous - great big, gorgeous, blooming within a few months of planting them.

Boy was I surprised when I got my order from Heirloom. Under 3x3x6" pots. And I'd be afraid to look in the dirt to see how much root growth there is, because Amazing Grace looks EXACTLY like the cuttings I started December 2nd. It has no more growth than the few tiny sprouts I have.

The other 3 have a little more growth. I will be interested to see what my 1 year cuttings look like, these are supposed to be 1 year cuttings, and Amazing Growth looks like a couple month cutting.

I'm super sad.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2013 at 1:55PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

It's been a long time, but the bands we rec'd years ago from Heirloom were almost universally tiny things, marginally-rooted.


    Bookmark   February 16, 2013 at 2:28PM
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Neptune is the one with no leaves on it. They're all pretty scrawny. Last year I ordered 3 DA's from them and they have grown alot but have a long way to go.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2013 at 5:54PM
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Tuggy3(9b NorCal)

I ordered three of the same rose variety from Heirloom. I will have to say all three ended up being really healthy. In their fourth year they have way outgrown and out performed their sister budded rose of the same variety. They had to stay in a pot for a year though before I felt comfy putting them in the ground. I'm not getting any younger so I can't wait so long for roses to get to a good size. Mary

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 12:40AM
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seil zone 6b MI

I received bands from Heirloom before too and none of them grew large enough in one season to winter over so I no longer order them. I need to have fairly well grown plants for them to make through a winter here so I tend to spend a little more and get larger plants to begin with.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 11:52AM
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Tuggy3(9b NorCal)

I keep hearing great things about Rogue Valley and their bare roots. Someone posted pictures of huge plants. I got some real losers with chopped off roots and tops from a couple of California mail order companies last year so I'm going Rogue Valley next year. Bands just aren't in my future anymore. Although they winter over in 5 gallons here I am tired of messing with them. Actually I have never felt comfortable putting bands from any company in the ground the first year and we don't have any hard freezes. Mary

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 12:13PM
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Brittie - La Porte, TX 9a

I've received tiny bands from a lot of different places, but due to my mild climate, very few of those failed to thrive. I accidentally pulled one straight out of its dirt the Spring before last (from a different nursery) to find that it had barely an inch wide rootball. Wow was I nervous trying to pot it back up! It somehow survived though and is now a pretty healthy plant.

This post was edited by brittie on Sun, Feb 17, 13 at 18:35

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 12:36PM
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Tuggy3(9b NorCal)

I will have to say that I've never lost a band or a rose that came in a 1 gallon pot or a local nursery rose. I've lost some mail order bare roots though. When they come with one inch roots and twiggy wrinkled canes, soaking and pampering sometimes can't save them. Sometimes they are so weak they are not worth saving. I think I just have to be more careful about sourcing my roses when choosing bare roots. The rose forum comments have helped me a lot with that.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 12:54PM
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I feel fairly foolish because when reading the website, Heirloom clearly states what they are sending out - and that is cuttings (I don't see the word "band" anywhere, so in my ignorance I'm presuming they are one and the same).

For $17 per rose rose (3 of which I did get an advertised discount on), I just "assumed" (which I know never to do) that I was getting bareroots. No ones fault but my own, as again, Heirloom is clear that that is not what they are sending, and does not misrepresent what they are sending.

I put my 4 little guys in pots, and they are all very healthy. And to my surprise when I removed them from their little pots, I could see roots on all that had reached the perimeter. As I am more settled down now, and I compare them to my cuttings, they have far surpassed my coming 3 month cuttings in growth and roots.

Live and learn.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 2:04PM
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Tuggy3(9b NorCal)

I think they will grow fast. Sometimes bands are the only way to go. I have found roses in bands that don't come any other way. I bought four OGR's in bands because that was the only option. It was startling to me when I opened the box though. Mary

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 3:35PM
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frances_in_nj(z6 NJ)

This makes me a little nervous! I placed a big order with them, as they had many things I couldn't get elsewhere. I had ordered from them years ago, when I was a real novice. All but one of the plants I got from them died, but the one that survived is fantastic (I'm sure the deaths were my fault, due to my ignorance at the time). I don't mind if they are small (the ones from Rogue are small) but I do want a decent root system! I guess I'll just keep my fingers crossed. It does make me appreciate Roses Unlimited all the more - their plants are BIG and always have nice root systems, and are cheaper than Heirlooms, too!

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 4:09PM
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The only time I do "bands" anymore is for an OGR or mini that I can't find in a quart size or larger. What I've learned to do with bands is to wait until I see roots in the drain holes (usually about 6 wks), then move them into 1 gal. pots until the fall. Then move them into 3 gal. pots for the winter (very well protected) and keep them there until late summer. Then put them in the ground. Also the first summer they are in 3 gal pots, I dig a hole and put the pots in the ground where they will spend the rest of their life making me happy. This way they are use to the area where they will be. And there is no adjustment when put in the ground.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 4:16PM
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mzstitch(Zone 7b South Carolina)

Every time I ordered bands from Heirloom I got very small plants but they were always healthy and survived well. Once I found this site, I realized Roses Unlimited and for a couple dollars more a rose I get a healthy rose bush in a one gallon pot. Therefore I haven't ordered from Heirloom since. It's my personal opinion the bands are over-priced, but you are getting a quality plant.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 4:31PM
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Maryl zone 7a

I've been ordering from Heirloom for a couple of decades and I've yet to have even one die on me. Yes, they are small, and I can say that on more then one occasion, they didn't look to me like they could possibly make it. But they did and thrived right off the bat. I always pot mine up. If it is a new variety that I'm trialing it allows me to see if I even like it before going to the bother of putting it in the soil, also those small "cuttings" give me an excuse to try more then just a rose or two as space at my home is at a premium. People in cold climates who can't overwinter or shelter their potted roses are understandably hesitant about such a process, but for the rest of us, I'm giving two thumbs up to Heirloom.....Maryl

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 6:14PM
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When I first started to grow roses two years ago, I actually started with Heirloom. I ordered about 1 dozen from them in 2011. All are doing well except for one. Now, out of the 18 band roses ordered for 2013, none is from them. For bands, I've found that I can get better value -- the same price range, but bigger plants -- elsewhere. I do think that they are a great source, but there are better source out there if the standard is plant size. They do have one of the largest selections (if not the largest) among all the band producers though. I will probably continue to order from them, but only if I cannot find the varieties elsewhere.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 7:34PM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

I would be upset if I paid $17 for cuttings that were tiny and barely rooted too.

I took our bands out of the green house Thursday (they are in 1g pots now) and they seem to be thrilled to be out of the there and in to some partial sun (in the morning only) Only one had some die back on her, but is coming back gang busters lower down so guess it is all okay.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 9:24PM
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The roots are more important to me than the top growth. It's not just the size of the rootball either, but the density of it. I have received a big pot of soil with few roots in it and a plant wobbly in the soil. In such cases the customer is paying a lot to ship potting soil. I'd rather pay for a smaller but denser rootball. It is nice to get a big plant with great roots but a small plant with great roots will catch up quickly and can save money. That said I got some nice sized plants from Heirloom last spring and they have done very well. Maybe more of their plants are bigger later in the spring.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 8:55AM
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I have been buying from Heirloom close to 10 yrs now and have only 1 that died on me.

This is what I got last year, it's pretty good for a band.

I have also bought from Chamblees, RU, RV. All are very good in my book.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 10:44AM
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Everything from Heirloom has always been great for me. They're tiny little things sometimes, but if they come in the spring and you just stick the whole band into the ground, they'll be OK. If you insist on transplanting them, that's a little hard and I don't know why people do it. Take the band, put it in a container with about 1/2 inch of water on the bottom, leave it for a couple of days. Then just put the entire plant, band and all into the ground. Let the roots grow. Don't disturb them right away by transplanting into another pot.

End of summer, you can transplant and you'll be fine. The smallest things I ever got were from Ralph Moore - those were really tiny. But they did OK too. Just don't be impatient to take things out of the pots they're growing in.

Chamblees is different - their roses are usually a bit bigger to start with.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 5:31PM
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From the photo those look about double the size of 3 of mine that just arrived, and about triple the size of one.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 9:55PM
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I am happy to report that despite my complaints on the smallness of the bands from Heirloom, they are all doing well and healthy.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 8:42AM
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seil zone 6b MI

That's great news, ycavaz!

    Bookmark   May 3, 2013 at 12:22PM
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mountainrose(z7 Georgia)

I have been ordering from Rogue Valley since the Uncommon Rose went out of business. I have been happy with their bands for years. (Although I still miss the Uncommon Rose)

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 8:42AM
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Yes - I have to report back as well. My bands are in 5 gallon pots, and are getting huge. All are healthy, and clearly my initial reaction was ignorance having never received bands before. I think the other point about mine being so tiny is that I received them in early February.

Anyways - they are gorgeous, and healthy, and I feel bad for making any negative comments in the first place.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2013 at 10:02AM
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frances_in_nj(z6 NJ)

I got my roses from Heirloom, too. I was very impressed! The packing was perfect, and the plants were really nice! Much bigger than I expected, with great looking root systems. I will certainly order from them again!

    Bookmark   May 5, 2013 at 8:41AM
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alameda/zone 8

Have ordered from Heirloom for years. I got the biggest, healthiest plants I have ever gotten from this this spring. Really nice bands! I let them grow in their pots for awhile in morning sun - then replanted by putting the band in a pot, filling with good soil and tamping it down then carefully lifting the pot out of the soil, removng the band and placing it back in the hole that I made. Then topdressing with soil. Very little disturbing of the roots this way.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2013 at 2:55AM
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Mendocino_Rose(z8 N CA.)

I've delt with bands for years. At times I've recieved tiny plants from Rogue Valley , Heirloom, and Vintage. Depending on the rose or the time of year sometimes it's just like that. The only time I've lost anything is when I have ordered Teas too close to winter time.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2013 at 7:06PM
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Tuggy3(9b NorCal)

My heart sunk too when I got my first bands from Heirloom.
I couldn't imagine they would ever make it. Harmonyp I'm glad yours responded to your good care and are thriving. Mary

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 12:32AM
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TNY78(7a-East TN)

I agree with Almeda! This spring's order was the largest and healthiest plants I've ever received from them. One I moved them into 1g pots, quite a few just took off like rockets! Not a single one was a questionable twig :)


    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 7:19AM
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To piggyback off of maryl.. SUPER DUPER pleased with Roses Unlimited. Then again, I was used to the teeny tiny size of Heirloom Roses. Had I realized the awesomeness of Roses Unlimited, I would've never bothered with Heirloom.

Also, not too pleased with Rogue Valley. Ordered a Dainty Bess and sheesh! Not sure if they wanted to ensure she kept her namesake but she was beyond dainty.. More like Piddly Bess! Three leaves. One malnourished looking stem.

Sorry to hear that I am not the only one bummed out about Heirloom Roses.. I can imagine how excited/hopeful you must've been. Lessons learned!

    Bookmark   May 9, 2013 at 12:12AM
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jim1961 Zone 6a Central Pa.

Never had a problem with Heirloom roses. I just ordered
4 roses.
I plant them into the ground as soon as they arrive...
1 inch deeper than they were in the pot they came in.
Place a cage around them so animals can not get to
them and I do not fertilize the first year at all...

    Bookmark   May 9, 2013 at 9:41AM
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jim1961 Zone 6a Central Pa.

Yes RU roses are very nice...

My roses from Heirloom just arrived and look very
healthy. I usually put them straight into the ground
BUT we are getting two nights of frosts so that will
not be

    Bookmark   May 11, 2013 at 2:18PM
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jasminerose4u, California(9b)

Heirloom Roses posted on their website that they are now offering roses in gallon pots, due to customer feedback asking for more mature roses. They are higher priced though. The bands are still available.

Here is a link that might be useful: Video from Heirloom Roses

    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 9:20PM
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