Is it normal/ok...

aviastar 7A VirginiaApril 7, 2013

Hi everyone!

I got my first bands from Heirloom about two weeks ago and followed their directions to the letter, i.e. unwrapped immediately, gave a good watering and moved them directly to a sheltered spot on my covered porch (hardening off? Is that the right word here?).

They remained happy and I kept them moist for about 5 days before planting them in ground. I watched the Paul Zimmerman video and debated about potting them up for a season first, but I don't have a great, easily accessible space for pots other than the north facing covered porch and I worried about their sun exposure there.

Each rose- I have 3 so far- went into a large hole with nice black, moist composted leaf soil. I have a load of mulch coming tomorrow, so while they are mounded up pretty good with the soil, they are not mulched yet. I've checked them every day, watered at the ground when dry, and removed dead leaves.

The Abraham Darby is doing great, shiny green leaves, no issues. The Night Light and Joseph's Coat, however don't look as hot; Night Light is the saddest. Several dead little leaves and not quite a perky in the leaf department. They've only been planted for about 5 days, so still a little early for new growth and they each have stems that are green and upright, not soft or droopy.

Just a little shock at a new location? More worrisome than that? I do have two more- Talisman Cl. and Royal Sunset- scheduled to come from RVR in the next week or so. So while I am prepared, as a new rose grower, for some attrition due to human error, I would certainly like to minimize that as much as possible and give these little guys their best shot. Anything I should do differently for the next two that come in? Anything to baby the ones I have now?

Thank you so much!

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jim1961 Zone 6a Central Pa.

Just wondering did you replace your native soil???
Or is your soil just nice and loose from leaves covering it and decaying?
Reason I'm asking is sometimes new soil mixtures
may be lacking in one thing or another, etc. Or PH levels off, etc.

I'm in a cooler climate zone 5/6 so I'm not sure what pratices are best for you in your area...

I try not to disturb the roots when planting...
Hopefully its just alittle shock... Best of Luck!

This post was edited by jim1961 on Sun, Apr 7, 13 at 17:08

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 4:57PM
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jim1961 Zone 6a Central Pa.

Oh if the sun gets to hot in your area you may want to
place chairs over them PART of the day for a few days until they establish themselves better...
Keep well watered. No fertilizer for awhile...
I personally do not use fertilizer the first year...
But that's not set in stone...

Protect from rabbits, etc... (cage)

This post was edited by jim1961 on Sun, Apr 7, 13 at 17:34

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 5:21PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

I wouldn't use fertilizer. It might be OK, but I, personally, have killed plants that way, so I don't do it no mo'.

To be honest, the reason we pot up bands is that we can most-easily control their environment -- particularly when the plants are very small, and newly-rooted. Remember -- these guys are JUST out of the greenhouse.

Plants I've gotten from Rogue Valley Roses, tho, have been big enough. and well-developed enough, that I was almost tempted to put them into the ground.


    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 5:35PM
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Mendocino_Rose(z8 N CA.)

I never put bands directly in the ground. I know a few people with light warm soil that do OK with this practice. Some vigorous roses may handle it . For me it is a waste of an exspensive plant.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 6:30PM
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seil zone 6b MI

I would have suggested potting them for a bit too but since you've already planted them I wouldn't disturb them again. Be patient. They've only been in the ground a few days and chances are they're just in shock. Every rose reacts differently and has it's own time table for recovery and growth so don't expect them all to behave the same. Also, both JC and NL are climbers where as Abe isn't so they will be SLOW growers anyway. Chances are they won't grow much at all this season and may take up to 5 years to do any real climbing. What they are doing is building BIG root balls to support the height they'll get to eventually.

Watch the watering. You have to check deeper than the surface to see if they need water. If the soil isn't draining all that fast but the surface is dry you could be over watering them. Unfortunately the symptoms for both over watering and under watering are exactly the same, wilting and yellowing, dying leaves. Buy a moisture meter. You can get them at most nurseries. It has a probe on it about 8 inches long to stick in the soil and find out what's going on down below.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 7:55PM
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aviastar 7A Virginia

Thank you so much for all the replies!

Jim: no, I mixed in the leaf soil. Admittedly, my whole property is very rocky, so by the time I dragged all the rocks out of my 2x2 ft holes (and got the second shovel since the rocks broke my first one), there wasn't a lot of dirt left so I added to it :) They do get a bit of shade coverage from the fence posts- they will outgrow that little shady spot if I can keep them alive, but I had worried that it might be part of the problem- good to hear that's not likely the case!

jerijen: I didn't fertilize; read on these boards it was tricky business, so I avoided. I checked with Heirloom and after watching the Paul Z. vids, made the choice for straight to ground - I am pretty new at all things plant and I doubted my ability to gauge the needs of a potted plant very well, plus everything I have tried in pots ends up spilled over all the time due to wind and the steep slope of my yard in all directions. I hope this hasn't been a fatal mistake, but if it is, then I will do better next time :)

mendicino: I double checked and found from a few sources that this should be ok in my area, hopefully not a dire rookie mistake.

seil: thank you, I do hope it's just a bit of shock! I am prepared to wait for them to really get going, I just don't like to see them shed so many (like 8, but that's a high percentage of the NL started with!) leaves :( I will watch the watering, good tip. They are situated on top of a steep hill, in broken up soil, but you're so right I have no idea if that water is hanging around under the surface!

I did remember that I have some good old fashioned glass cucumber jars- I bought them from the glass blower in Jamestown after admiring all the gardens in Williamsburg with their rows of pretty veggies under glass. Maybe a little time back under the protection of glass, but not out of the soil will keep the wind off, and the temp up to help my little Night Light?

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 11:36PM
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cecily(7 VA)

Its going to be unseasonably warm this week, for goodness sake don't cover them!

One thing you haven't mentioned is to make little cages out of chicken wire ( ring shaped) to go around them and keep rabbits (and big, clumsy humans) away. Yours are tucked next to fence posts but I'd still make cages.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 7:45AM
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seil zone 6b MI

Cecily is right. No covers, especially glass, it it's warm and sunny. They'll cook!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 3:16PM
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michaelg(7a NC Mts)

They have been in a greenhouse with high humidity, so they need to stop growing tops for a while as roots expand and take up enough moisture to balance things in the harsher outdoor environment. Provide temporary partial shade for individual plants that seem to be suffering. Water lightly every day for a while until roots expand.

I have planted bands directly into the garden with good results. I recommend installing a couple of stakes next to each band to protect it from dogs, basketballs, etc.

I don't recommend planting in pure or mostly compost, as it will shrink rapidly over time and drainage will worsen. Also leaf compost as a soil or amendment needs to be fully finished (two years old) or it will "rob" nitrogen as it continues to break down. If you have filled the holes with compost, I would suggest replanting in a 4:1 mixture of mineral soil and compost, then mulching with leaves or unfinished compost.

I have always fertilized my new roses, but lightly, and certainly bands need a month or two to adjust before fertilizing.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 3:52PM
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catsrose(VA 6)

I always plant my bands directly in the ground. I've never lost one from doing this. I give them a mix of compost and native soil, don't fertilize and keep them moist but not water-logged. I have learned not to plant the less winter hardy roses after Sept. They need more time to get established.

I am not sensitive to the needs of pot ghettos--I try to avoid having one. So babies are more likely to dry out in pots where a day or two without water can be more damaging than in the ground where they have more protection.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 7:25AM
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aviastar 7A Virginia

Thank you!

Cecily and seil: that's why we newbies ask- our instincts aren't exactly developed yet! ;)

michael: thank you! I think there's enough native soil in there (hope?), and the leaf soil is bagged and sold by a local company, too- local dirt, a bit like selling ice to Eskimos, I suppose, but hey, if it works! I also went back and read the bag again, it is labeled as top soil/soil amendment not mulch or compost. The stakes are a great idea, thank you!

Catsrose: Thanks! That was my exact thought process on the pots, glad to hear I may not have totally messed this up!

As for the plants, they are hanging in there and haven't lost anything else in two days. No new things yet, but not dropping leaves either. Hopefully, it's like you all have said and their little roots are just catching up!

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 10:31AM
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aviastar 7A Virginia

Just an update for any future readers and a thank you!

Far too soon to tell about longevity with the new babies, but I have followed the advice of the lovely posters- especially regarding little cages and watering, soil mixes for the two new RVR bands, and just calming down in general.

All five plants have new growth after some decided evidence of bunny bites before I could get them caged, and looking happy and healthy!


    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 6:01PM
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mzstitch(Zone 7b South Carolina)

Avistar, welcome to rose gardening. Warning it can become addictive! I was exactly where you were about 6 years ago when I took up this hobby. I got my first bands from Heirloom, followed directions just about exactly, and started to worry about every little thing the first year. This site is what made me relax, and I slowly learned from so many here by not only posting my own questions, but reading everyones posts. Enjoy your new roses, sounds to me you are off to a great start! Keep reading here, and post us pictures of your first blooms!

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 8:51PM
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aviastar 7A Virginia

Thank you, mzstitch!

I do find myself stopping in around here quite often just to read and ogle other people's blooms- can't wait to be able to contribute a bloom myself!

    Bookmark   April 18, 2013 at 1:46PM
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Thanks for the question, AviaStar.. Was going to ask something similar as I received my roses today from Heirloom and Roses Unlimited.

So it's not only Friday but I received a bundle of heavenly rosie goodness.

Just added the following to my collection:
Orange Flame
Tina Turner
Fragrant Keepsake
Sheila's Perfume
Freddie Mercury
Fragrant Apricot
Roman Holiday

Planning on temporarily potting them tomorrow and then unleashing them into the earth in a couple months when (if) I feel they're ready.

Attached a photo of these gems (and my beloved beasts popped in to participate in the unveiling).

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 11:15PM
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Great Beast-Company photo! I wasn't bold enough to put my bands in the ground, so my 4 from Heirloom in Feb are still in pots. I'm rather pleased with the results, and will think about planting in fall.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2013 at 9:48AM
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aviastar 7A Virginia

Are those some blooms peeking out of that box, Displaced? Lucky you! Beautiful pups, too!

Bold? Hm, I would like to think I was bold in putting them in the ground and not just lazy/dumb! The proof will be in the pudding, I suppose! Anyway, good job on your results thus far!

    Bookmark   April 20, 2013 at 2:47PM
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