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Big Box Store Roses

Posted by thedogsLL 6-Boston (My Page) on
Sun, Apr 6, 14 at 13:03

Big Lots has a sale on dormant roses, so I stopped in just to look. They have a few "bags" of Blue Boy, from Tyler Farms. I can't find any Tyler Farms - lots of farms and rose growers in Tyler TX, but none with that specific name that I can find.

(I don't know if anyone remembers-my work schedule has been nuts so I haven't been on the forum for a while- but I have/had a lavender HT that has been fading for a couple of years. The extra cold winter has done it in, so I'm looking for a replacement. All the nurseries that I've read are reliable are out of anything blue, so if I go that path, it means waiting at least till fall to plant, maybe next spring.

Is $3 for a rose a red flag? It's not the money - it's the work, and the disappointment if it doesn't grow. I can't even tell if it's own root or grafted, and am not sure there's such a thing as own root Blue Boy.

Thoughts/suggestions,please?
Lynn T


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Big Box Store Roses

Hi Lynn, probably as important a question is, what Blue Boy is it? There is the older, once flowering moss; an unregistered floribunda/shrub I grew in the nineties which was terrible; and a Hybrid Tea from New Zealand which apparently hasn't been imported into our market. As far as "good plants" go, yes $3 is a red flag. Something which has been produced carefully, using quality material, done well, is going to cost significantly more than $3. This COULD be that kind of plant, except for the store to be able to offer it for $3, they obtained it for less than half of that price. That would mean they were "dumped" to get rid of excess stock. Probably the weather prevented them from being sold to their originally intended market, pushing the seller into dumping them for whatever they could get for them. There is no way to know what conditions they've been held under and that can make a huge difference in their performance.

The alternative is they were produced to be sold for that price and that tells you very little care was exercised in their production. The plant could be anything with that name slapped on the package. Again, there is no way to know how it's been held until now and the chances are quite good it is virused, if that is an issue for you.

If the work and disappointment are the issues, move on and forget it. Or, you could throw down your money, pot it and see what it does. It's up to you which is the best choice. Good luck! Kim


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

The bag just says Hybrid Tea Rose. I think you confirmed what I already knew. I'd rather wait. I wouldn't so much mind "dumped" to get rid of excess stock, since I've come across some really good buys that way. It's the rest of what you said that was bugging the back of my mind.

So, does anyone have a clue if there's a nursery that might still have a fragrant lavender HT in stock? Long shot, I know, but it never hurts to ask. :-)

Lynn T


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

That raises the question...WHAT HT is there named "Blue Boy"? The Simpson HT from New Zealand isn't in this country from what I can see on Help Me Find. The plant could be anything and any color. I'm sorry I can't offer suggestions who still has a fragrant lavender HT. Are there any nurseries or big box stores near you which offer bud and bloom canned plants? At least you can see what the flower is when it's in bloom. The price may be higher, but you know what it is and that it's alive. Good luck! Kim


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

At this point in time, I'd plan on getting something potted from Roseland.

However, keep in mind that this HT is going to require a regular spray program to thrive. Also, that while parts of the midwest did have an unusually hard winter, the northeast did not. Snow cover is helpful to plants, and the temperature lows were still on the warm side of normal.

Here is a link that might be useful: Roseland Nursery


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

Thanks, Kim. Home Depot will have some soon, and we have one local nursery, Kane's, a couple of towns over.

Gallica, when you say "this HT" you do mean the Blue Boy I started with, right? Not all lavenders need spraying, I hope? The one that didn't make it never had any disease or anything, it just got smaller and smaller and then didn't come back. I'm hoping it was just my lack of knowledge that did it in. I know now to bury them deeper.

Yeah, a lot of places got hit way harder than we did here. We got a couple of days of below normal days/nights, but nothing like a lot of people did. Our winter was weird. Maybe it wasn't cold specifically, but whatever, the one cane is yellow and no sign of growth.

Thanks for the link to Roseland! I had no idea something like that was so close - I think it's only about 1 or 2 hours away from me! I like the idea of actually seeing what I'm getting way better, LOL!

Lynn T


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

No, I mean all lavender HTs. About 99.9% of all HTs need spraying in the northeast.

It is way too early to declare something DOA, unless you want rid of it. It will take another month to really sort out how things are doing.


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

Well, it'll have that. The sale flyer got me going too early. I see that now.

I have no way to use a shovel on it while the spring bulbs are blooming, anyhow. For a new rose, I'll put in more bulbs this fall, but if there's a chance it might yet make it... but the sickly yellow green cane does not bode well. There's also no swelling at all at the leaf nodes, like on Crown Princess Margareta nearby. I would rather it come back than start all over with a different one!

Hm. If it should come back, I wonder if digging it up in the fall, and replanting deeper would help it? A couple inches, just to get the crown farther under the surface?

Lynn T


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

For a grafted rose, so long as the bud union is below ground, it is deep enough. I haven't seen any difference between roses buried and roses buried half way to China, except the deeply buried ones smother.

So long as the bud union is down there, new growth can come from it. So the above ground canes are dead. Around here that is a perfectly normal state for HTs. You have to wait and see what shows up from underground. A yellow-green cane sounds like something will show up. It isn't dead yet.


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

  • Posted by seil z6b MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Apr 6, 14 at 18:49

Please, don't waste your money, Lynn. I've purchased those roses from Big Lots in the past and they are 1) very poor grade and 2) never what they say they are. That's if they ever even break dormancy. They've probably been in cold storage for months already and Big Lots gives these rose no care and usually they've been sitting in a warehouse drying out and freezing for weeks before they make it to the store. I once had a guy at BL tell me he'd had those boxes of roses sitting out back on a pallet for a couple of weeks waiting for the add to go in the paper, no water, freezing temps and crushed in a box. The roses he took out of the box were already black and dead as door nails. The few that had any green cane also had a lot of that white growth on them which will be a total loss. Even I, as much as I love a deal and a challenge, have stopped buying them. They may be a better deal in warm climates but in a cold climate they're pretty much toast by the time they get in the store.

There is a lavender HT called Blue Girl that shows up in a lot of these body bag cheap roses. It could be that one and they just changed the name. They do that a lot too. Or they'll just go with colors like "Red HT".

Go to a local nursery and see what they offer. They may be more expensive but they'll be healthy and what the name says. If you're looking for a beautiful lavender rose look for Love Song. Mine was GORGEOUS all last season!


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

  • Posted by seil z6b MI (My Page) on
    Sun, Apr 6, 14 at 18:50

Please, don't waste your money, Lynn. I've purchased those roses from Big Lots in the past and they are 1) very poor grade and 2) never what they say they are. That's if they ever even break dormancy. They've probably been in cold storage for months already and Big Lots gives these rose no care and usually they've been sitting in a warehouse drying out and freezing for weeks before they make it to the store. I once had a guy at BL tell me he'd had those boxes of roses sitting out back on a pallet for a couple of weeks waiting for the add to go in the paper, no water, freezing temps and crushed in a box. The roses he took out of the box were already black and dead as door nails. The few that had any green cane also had a lot of that white growth on them which will be a total loss. Even I, as much as I love a deal and a challenge, have stopped buying them. They may be a better deal in warm climates but in a cold climate they're pretty much toast by the time they get in the store.

There is a lavender HT called Blue Girl that shows up in a lot of these body bag cheap roses. It could be that one and they just changed the name. They do that a lot too. Or they'll just go with colors like "Red HT".

Go to a local nursery and see what they offer. They may be more expensive but they'll be healthy and what the name says. If you're looking for a beautiful lavender rose look for Love Song. Mine was GORGEOUS all last season!


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

Even though!! I would ask what their return policy is! I am getting fussy about that in my old age. And I think I know enough about roses to pull them out of the ground!


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

I agree, don't buy from Big Lots. If you want to try a variety without spending too much, check out the body bags at places like Home Depot and Lowes, which at least are kept out of doors or on cooled patios. The best body bagged roses I have seen were at Aldis last year, but they didn't arrive till about May.


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

You've all convinced me, LOL! So many good reasons to ignore Big Lots, no matter how enticing that Blue Boy is/was. I've heard so much about it, and couldn't believe that I might actually get to own one! But I'd rather wait, especially if there's any chance the lavender I have might have a chance. I don't think so, but we have about an inch of warm rain coming tonight. Maybe that will be what it needs to perk it's ears up!

Cross your fingers for it - - and thank you, ALL!

Lynn T


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

I don't shop Big Lots much anymore but with Kmart gone, I wanted to see what they had in potting soil. While I was there I found the mostly dead body bag roses under tent. Its like they are trying to kill them on purpose. So sad.


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

"Is $3 for a rose a red flag?"

Yes The biggest, reddest flag you'll ever see. Odds are you are buying junk, one way or another. The cost of the plant itself is just the beginning of your investment.


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

I love a good deal.

But I try and to ask myself if this it is something I need or am I buying some one else's trash. A low price is not always a bargain.

From Tom Spellman of Dave Wilson Nursery, a guy got a deal on a bunch of end of the season Quince trees. He cared for them, fed and watered the for a couple of years and then got a crop of quince......he wanted to know what to do with all those quince. Had he spent money on the trees he wanted rather than a bargain, he might have had fruit he wanted rather than all those quince.


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

LOL! Okay! Okay! I got it! Really! NO rose from BL!

I love this forum, even if I *don't* get to look at it often.

Lynn T

p.s. if I see any sign of growth I'm posting a pic of a yellow green cane!


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

Lynn T

Don't worry, I have to admit I have bought a few super cheap body bag roses. Two are doing good (finally), two more heard about the shovel and decided to get busy, one is maybe in a bad spot and the last....well it vanished. Those were all bought when Mom said she wanted roses and I did not want to work on caring for them-I had all the rest of the yard to clear out. Mom ended up not caring for them much so now I have most of them in prime spots so I figured I had better do something with them.

I also bought some cheap potted roses for places that were bare and I wanted something while the $$ roses grew up. And a couple are in places that if I had to have the plumber or some other work man, I would not hesitate to prune to just above the rootstock. One is about to be loaded with big pink scented blooms.


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

heheh -- I actually got a "Blue Boy" from Walmart when the bare roots came in not this past December, but the one before. It's the once bloomer moss that they were selling (and I could tell that just by looking at the thorns and stems on the bareroot at the time. It is a once bloomer, but one I actually kinda like. So that is probably the same rose from Tyler at your BL.

I did get some roses at BL once. I think they pretty quickly passed on and I do remember one that was surely mislabeled that I threw away when I couldn't figure out what it was. "Pink Rose"


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

The rose I swell that will out live me, is my pink peace which I got seven years ago from BL. Back then, they even had trees, I got a spring snow crabapple tree. So beautiful, it will be blooming soon. They actually cared back then, nice products with good prices. The last several years, its just gone downhill.


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

I have to wonder if it really depends on the store manager at a particular location. Like Mori, up till a couple years ago, this one had trees too, and other plants, and the roses were not on a register endcap like these. And they actually watered them. Well, the bags were heavy and there was water on the table under them. I actually saw someone with a hose watering the trees in their burlap bags.

Lynn T


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

If it helps, this is the current Certified Roses catalog, including their wholesale pricing. They package a variety of "brands" for various markets. You'll have to browse through the catalog until you hit the pricing/order pages. It was sent to me because a friend's rose, Miracle on the Hudson, named for the miraculous plane crash in the Hudson River, is spotlighted. Kim

Here is a link that might be useful: Certified Roses catalog


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

I didn't read far enough into the email. The pricing is on a locked page, but Googling it brought it up so he sent them to me as pdf files, which won't post here. I'll forward them to anyone who wishes to private message me through GW. Kim


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

You have to know what you are looking for in those big box stores. Home Depot carried last year many of the 'Knock Out' roses from 'Double Pink' to 'Sunny Knock Out'. I think you have to hit these stores at the correct time when they get fresh stock in.


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

Too true. Witness my Double Knockouts, bought in 2012 because of a buy one get one coupon from the HD garden club. Had I known what they were, I'd never have done it. My bed is too small for them!

Live and learn, I guess. I'm looking for a home for them.

Lynn T


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RE: Big Box Store Roses

Hmmmm. Bought one from Big Lots a few months ago. Threw it in the garage and noticed that it is leafing out nicely. I will plant soon. I am not a careful gardner. I dig the holes, plop em in, will fertilize once, mulch, a reasonable amount of water and thats it.. Its on its own. My plants and I have an understanding about level of effort.:-)


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