Moving my roses...

prazsong(6)June 3, 2012

I have three rose bushes that just aren't "happy" where they are. The leaves are turning yellow with black splotches on them. They don't get enough sun where they are, and the soil is clay. So, I'm going to move them.

I selected a spot in my yard that gets sun all day, and I amended the clay soil with many bags of humus/manure, sand, topsoil, gardening soil, and decayed leaves. I worked that mixture together really well in a bed we had dug out 12" deep. It's sitting there, just waiting for the roses to be put into them.

Any tips on actually digging up and moving the roses? Anything else I can do to the amended soil before transplanting the roses?

Should I feed the roses right after they're moved, or wait? I know I need to water the heck out of them, both before and after the move, but not sure about feeding them right away, or using bone meal in the soil mixture?

Any help would be appreciated. Thank you.

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catsrose(VA 6)

Don't feed and don't overwater. Clay doesn't drain well, so even tho you have amended the bed, it may still retain water. The old finger test works best. Keep them nicely moist but not wet. You may want to shade them in the afternoon if it gets very hot. It also sounds as if you have blackspot or anthracnose, a similar fungus. A drier, sunnier and more open bed will help, but won't prevent it. You can spray or just live with it. The roses will recover.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2012 at 7:31AM
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cecily(7 VA)

I prune roses before moving them. Some forum friends move them first, then prune. However you choose to do it, expect to lose a lot of green canes.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2012 at 8:02AM
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The best time to move them is during the winter, while dormant. The next best time to move them is just before overcast/rainy weather, such as we are having in Connecticut right now.

We have found that raised beds work best with clay soil--just add another 8 inches for the roses to grow in.

You may find that the root system is exactly the same size as when you planted the roses--making them easy to transplant. In my experience, it is better not to feed them.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2012 at 10:13AM
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seil zone 6b MI

You don't say where you are but I've moved roses in July here with good success. Dig the new holes first. When you dig them out get as BIG a root ball as you can and try to keep it intact as much as possible. Have a tarp or wheel barrow there to put the rose on to move it to the new spot. Place it in the new location and back fill around the root ball. Tamp it down some to make sure you have all the air holes out but don't compress the soil to hard. Water it. And keep watering it everyday for at least the first week if you don't get any real rain. Then every other day the next week and every third day the third week. By then you should be starting to see some new growth and you can put it on a regular watering schedule. Don't fertilize it until you have new growth on it. That's how you can tell that the feeder roots are growing and healthy and they will be able to take up nutrients. If you get some transplant shock or wilt right at the start don't worry. It should revive in a few days. If it doesn't and it's very hot it may need some extra shade during the hottest part of the day. Rig a bed sheet over it on stakes if possible or some people just put a lawn chair there to shade it.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2012 at 4:20PM
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