Rosa Don Juan Help

hdankoAugust 18, 2014

Id like to start by stating that I am a novice when it comes to roses. I just moved into a home and I'm trying to care for a Rosa Don Juan. I've done research and read that it is a climber , but the prior owner provided nothing for it to climb.

When I moved in a few months ago it was flowering and beautiful and it now looks like it is dying. Basically, I'm trying to understand how to care for it/save it. Do I need to prune it or install a trellis? Does it look like the bottom is dying or is that how it's supposed to look?

Again, I apologize for the simplicity but I have no idea what I'm doing. Appreciate any help!


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alameda/zone 8

Looks like it just lost its leaves either due to blackspot, summer heat/stress, but looks like the canes are green. You might prune out the dead wood, if any, maybe lightly prune the tops to encourage it to leaf out, mulch if needed, water well and fertilize with some fish emulsion. You might fan the canes along the fence to help laterals give you more blooms. It may just be taking a rest and with some care, will pop back and bloom well this fall. Some of mine do this in heat of summer and this is what I do to help them out.

Lovely yard and fence!

    Bookmark   August 18, 2014 at 11:51AM
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I agree with Judith, I have a red and a pink Don Juan. My red one defoliated due to BS and the heat but it has bounced back. The canes can be a little stiff but if you gently tie the canes along the fence you will have more blooms. My pink one blooms constantly and is one of my favorite roses. Good luck and post pics when it blooms for you! I would also recommend watching Paul Zimmermans videos on YouTube on training and pruning climbers, it is very informative and helped me to understand more about climbers.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2014 at 1:48PM
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Agree with above. Would cut this one back and give good handful of organic at the base and water. Even in Chicago, this rose does fairly well. Get rid of the dead wood and cut back the leafless canes...not all the way, just a trim.
He will need a support , eventually. I find the longer canes very malleable.
This is a picture of mine about a month ago. After lots o f winter kill, he came back fast. Before I got a chance to tie him up the structure. You will love this rose.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2014 at 4:08PM
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As I look at your pic I notice a tiny little frill of red new growth slightly to the right of center. That tells me the rose is trying to leaf out and bloom again.
Try to straighten the canes. I discourage a hard prune in august but a nice clean up will help him.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2014 at 4:23PM
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bart_2010(8/9 Italy)

A lot of my roses have almost totally defoliated,and I'm not even sure why: didn't notice particularly bad bspot,and it hasn't been all that hot this summer,considering the norm of these past 10-15 years. It has been a bad year for caterpillars, however...On the other hand, i think it is pretty normal for roses to "take a rest" during the summer; i.e., they sort of go dormant, and dropping the leaves could well be just due to that.The plant doesn't look sickly to me; I wouldn't do anything drastic at all...certainly NO hard pruning!!!

    Bookmark   August 19, 2014 at 7:47AM
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mad_gallica(zone 5 - eastern New York)

It looks completely normal for a rose that is susceptible to blackspot, hasn't been sprayed, and is being grown in the east. Water and food will help, but the real problem is it needs help against fungus.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2014 at 11:13AM
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And don't let the seed pods form yet. I see those. Lol.
Don Juan is my passion....can u tell?

    Bookmark   August 19, 2014 at 11:20AM
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Thank you all so much. This is a great help!! @susan4952 how do I stop the seed pods from forming?

    Bookmark   August 20, 2014 at 4:53PM
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After a bloom, snap off, " deadhead" that spent bloom. The pods, or hips, only allowed in the fall when he is going dormant.
Forming a hip or seed pod, zaps the energy needed to continue blooming elsewhere on the plant during the growing season. Differs with different roses so just a generalization. But I would nip off those pods for now.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2014 at 6:23PM
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Wonderful! Thank you.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2014 at 9:01AM
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