Knockouts in zone 9 in partial shade

jacqueline9CAOctober 16, 2013

I have one knockout rose - Blushing Knockout. It bloomed very nicely the first Spring after I planted it, but has not done much since then. It just sort of sits there - its "Fall flush" consisted of 1 (one) bloom. It is free of disease, but has not grown much at all after its initial growth spurt.

Undoubtedly my fault, as they seem to do amazingly well for other people. My garden is sun challenged. I planted BK in a rose bed full of teas and chinas who all bloom happily in partial shade. Right now this knockout rose is 3 feet away from a "Mme Joseph Schwartz" tea rose which was planted about 40 years ago, which is pumping out both its usual lovely white blooms, and also pink ones, because part of it has reverted back to "Duchesse de Brabant".

So, any suggestions? All of the roses in this bed get fed and pruned (fed with 9 month osmocote) once a year. They get weeded and mulched. They all get irrigated through our long long dry (it has not rained since December 2012 - which I admit is unusual - our normal rainy season is Nov - May) Summers.

My BK is about 3 years old, so it is coming to the end of the slack I give "infant" roses. Perhaps it does not like zone 9? Needs real "full sun" conditions, unlike my OGRs?

Any thoughts or suggestions would be appreciated.


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jim1961 Zone 6a Central Pa.

Only thing I can think of:

Yes could be a lack of sun problem like you mention...
Could be getting to much Nitrogen or fertilizer but the stuff your using should feed it slowly...But who knows...
Maybe doesn't like constant high heat?
Could be a combination of things...
Dud plant?

Wish I could help more... Hope you get it figured out...

    Bookmark   October 16, 2013 at 3:03PM
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jim1961 Zone 6a Central Pa.

Anybody from California or anywhere else have any ideas for jacqueline3?

    Bookmark   October 17, 2013 at 7:04PM
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dublinbay z6 (KS)

I would suspect lack of sunshine also, but you might try feeding it with an organic product like Espoma's Rose Tone (or Plant Tone or Holly Tone) which contains some alfalfa--or go to a grain store and buy a bag of alfalfa (meal or cubes)--except that I don't think you can get it in a smaller bag for just one or two roses--which is why I suggested the Espoma product which has some (although not a lot) of alfalfa in it. Alfalfa is a kind of growing stimulant, so it may help.

Hope that helps.


    Bookmark   October 18, 2013 at 2:10PM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

I tried a couple of KOs for several years. They did poorly here, did not bloom much (in full sun), mildewed, so I got rid of them. The roses I replaced them with are doing splendidly in their spots, so it wasn't the spots.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2013 at 2:21PM
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A Knock Out isn't a rose I'd give "infant slack" time too! They are bred to be high performing right out of the box and if they aren't I can't imagine it would be any reason other than it doesn't like the spot it's planted in or it is a "lemon" specimen. Both reason would have mine gone and/or moved pretty quickly. (Says the woman who yanked one out last week!)

I totally get being patient with a something not bred to be so vigerous, but KO's are not a "1st year sleep, 2nd year creep, 3rd year leap" kind of variety!

    Bookmark   October 18, 2013 at 2:27PM
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anntn6b(z6b TN)

Re shade: back when the Chihuly exhibit was at the Atlanta Botanical Garden, some of us got together to see the roses and his glass. In back of my favourite pond with some very subtle glass colors, Jody and I saw a rose blooming not in the rose garden. So, of course, we had to go see.

The rose was taller than either of us (not that hard for most roses) and wasn't heavily leaved out, but it was blooming self supported in dappled sunlight. J sought out the label at the bottom and it was Knock Out. It didn't look like all the other KOs we had seen, but was adapting well to good soil, dappled sunlight and benign neglect.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2013 at 3:19PM
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