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Overwintering roses in pots

Posted by katefisher Z7_NorthernCA (My Page) on
Sun, Jul 8, 07 at 23:19

So this is a question for the future, winter of 2008. Next spring I want to plant two climbing roses in square, plastic 18" pots that sit on either side of my arbor. I want this to be a permanent situation and am wondering if a climber (like Brother Cadfael CL or Dorothhy Perkins perhaps) can make it here in Northern CA outside. We generally get down to no colder than 10 degrees. There is the rare cold snap taking us just below zero. That is unusual though. All my other roses are in the ground so this is uncharted territory for me. Since the flower will be growing on the arbor if all goes well I clearly could not bring it inside or shelter in any kind of structure.

Thank you.

Kate


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Funny you should ask. I am thinking of doing the same thing. But I'm much colder, z5a, so my purpose it to protect those long canes which here are normally toast come Spring. And I have a greenhouse which I'm thinking should give probably and extra 10 or 20 degrees of warmth.

So there are lots of questions like how big a pot for a climber? When to put it in the greenhouse? When to take it ou, etc. Then the basic question how will they fare to be in a pot permanently?

And finally maybe I should look for hardy climbers and forget all that extra effort. Well I've really tried that and so far few manage winter here.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

I too am looking for advice for overwintering roses in pots. I am in zone 6 and I have 3 roses in pots. I want to bring them in the garage for the winter but I am also not certain when to do that, when to bring them back out, what to do while they are in there, etc. I only intend on having them in a pot until next Spring when they will go in the ground. I live in Western NY with very cold winters so leaving them outside is not an option. I will definitely watch this thread as well because I want to make sure I do it right.

BTW, the roses I have in pots are Elle, Mary Rose, and Janet. I only got them last week so I did not want to plant them directly in the ground this year, so they are in 18" pots outside.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

I have at least 50 roses in pots permanently, 14 of them are climbers, all Austins. My zone 7 temps are very similar to katefisher's and I had no problem whatsoever. The first ones I did this with, James Galway, have been in their pots for 3 years and are doing just fabulously. Covered the arbor already and I need to prune them a bit but I don't have the heart to because they've always got some blooms on them. I doubt that would be the case in 5a, 6 would be iffy, but depending on the rose... Just be sure that the rose is hardy to at least 2 zones colder than your own. Maybe an Explorer??

Barbara


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Thank you Banders. Clearly I am not the only one with that question:-)

Good to know that what I was hoping for is doable. That's great advice to look for a rose tolerant down to zone 4 or 5 for me. Much appreciated. Just to give you a visual here is my arbor. Planted some annuals including a Hyacinth Bean Vine this weekend to keep it from looking naked until I can plant something permanent next year. (Please ignore the incorrect date stamp from my camera)

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Kate


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

  • Posted by maryl Z7 Okla. (My Page) on
    Mon, Jul 9, 07 at 13:21

I grow quite a few of my roses in pots. The oldest (Tamora), is going on 17 years in a container. Growing roses in containers for the long haul is very doable with certain caveats. Granted I'm in a warmer zone, but there are some things that will be applicable given any situation. Eventually you will need either a larger container (20 inches and up) or a smaller rose. Even if only the tops freeze back, you still want the roots to have enough room to thrive. If you end up with a large container, hauling it in and out of a greenhouse may become an issue. Here I can leave my pots out over winter, and usually they survive just fine. If someone in a colder zone has successfully overwintered a rose in a container for a long time, I'm sure they will have some more excellent advice for you.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Maryl, I'm in awe--and encouraged. Five years is the most I've had one, also Tamora, in a pot and it's blooming it's little heart out right now. Removing, root pruning, and repotting is also an option.

Katefisher, your setup is similar to mine, except my arbor is in front of a fence gate. I'd advise bigger pots, though.

Barbara, who would have that deck full of potted roses ;-)


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

  • Posted by hoovb z9 Southern CA (My Page) on
    Mon, Jul 9, 07 at 19:01

I would just put them in that planter in front of the deck--they will make it up the arbor from there. They will grow larger and be much easier to care for in the ground than in those small pots.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

I am in Zone 7B - 30 miles south of Albuquerque New Mexico. I wintered climbing peace, several Don Juans, a Golden Showers climber and a Pinada climber in pots that are probably from 5 to 7 gallons. Aside from adding several inches of mulch around the canes they were unprotected. All survived what passes for a real winter around (I moved here from Alaska 18 mos ago) here with only very minor pruning needed in the spring to remove a couple of small cankers.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

I'm in 9a; however, because of our altitude, we do have a winter from January to May, with coldest temperatures in the low teens. The town prides itself on its "Land of 4 seasons" moniker.

I have grown a number of David Austins in pots for three years and they are doing fine. The freeze and thaw cycles in late May do stunt their growth and kill off new spring growth every year, but they always come back strongly and bloomed. I also grow a couple of Honors and Innocence in pots and they are thriving. I do not do anything special; I don't even mulch or cover them to protect from snow and ice. I figured if I have to go to that much trouble, I'd plant rugosas. Storing in the garage is not an option because of the weight of the pots.

Jeff


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

I'm of the conviction that many roses can do just fine in pots as long as the variety is hardy enough for your zone and you use a large enough pot. So WHAT if they don't get so honkin' big that they cover the house. I hear that all the time from someone in my rose society--"they won't get as big in a pot", "they won't do well in a pot", "they need more care in a pot". Again, so WHAT?!?! For me, not getting as big is an advantage--I have limited space and I want to grow lots of different roses. AND, they are not more trouble to care for, IMO. It's one heck of a lot more trouble to move/replace a rose in the ground than one in a pot. A lot easier to inspect/care for if you don't have to get down on your hands and knees. And, for that matter, to plant in the first place. I can truly say that my potted roses are very little--if any--more work than my in-ground roses. If you get to grow the roses you want--where you want--and you get reasonable bloom and they MAKE YOU HAPPY then that's all that matters, IMNSHO. I'm not trying to convert everyone to growing container roses, but it is a great option in certain situations and it can be very gratifying. My hero re: this is Pat Henry (Roses Unlimited). I asked her about growing a particular rose in a pot and she said to me: "if I can grow Mermaid in a pot you can grow that one." I have a gorgeous bouquet on my desk right now, half of which came off of potted plants. I rest my case ;-)

Barbara


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

I always put my potted roses in a shed over the winter but someone here told me I did not need to do that because of the zone I live in. I wish I could remember who told me that because I have small 2 to 10 gallon potted roses/seedlings that are getting pretty well established and I want to wait until next year to put them in the ground so just wondering if I can leave them out too. Also does it depend on the size of the pot?


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Well what a wealth of information! I see I brought my question to the right folks.

I believe I have decided to follow hoovb's advice and next year plant my climbers (probably Brother Cadfael CL and/or Blaze) in the ground. In the little beds by the stairs.

This has been very educational though and I greatly appreciate everyone's thoughts and good ideas. Thank you.

Kate


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

  • Posted by maryl Z7 Okla. (My Page) on
    Tue, Jul 10, 07 at 15:58

Barbara, I'm beginning to see more of the virtues of "getting potted" now that I'm growing, shall we say, more mature. Fertilizing is a snap. I pull up my little work seat, sit down, spin the pot around while I add the fertilizer. With our recent flooding problem I can be fairly certain that my container roses will be fine, whereas the ones in the ground may end up dying from root rot. There are a few disadvantages as you said, but with careful selection of variety, potting soil, and containers, you can even grow roses on your concrete driveway(which I do). And Kate, you could perhaps grow a Clematis in those containers that would compliment the climbing roses you select. And you might want to think about coming and going through that narrow arch with thorns tearing at your clothes. Perhaps a thornless climber would be in order.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Maryl, we must be twins. I'm growing 3 on my concrete driveway right now with a couple more planned. If I can get DH to sell the car that's just sitting there growing moss, even more. Yes, for we people "of a certain age" the virtues of not crawling around on the ground are becoming more and more appealing.

Barbara


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

I'm bringing up this thread again, hope it's o.k., because I have questions for Maryl and Banders (and anyone else that wants to jump in:) about roses in pots. I realize that I'm in a much colder zone but here's the plan: along the side of my house and the cement walk, I was thinking of a smaller climber (compassion or westerland, or am I dreaming?) in a 22 inch pot with a blue clematis. I already have the blue clematis (Semu, very pretty) in the pot, but thought I would add the climber in the spring(and I'm looking at the apricot/pink/lt orangey colours). Since they will be partially attached to wires on the wall (I have a 4 foot trellis in the pot now), I would have to cut back everything quite a bit in the fall in order to move it into the garage (I do have a small trellis in the pot now 4 ft high). Do those climbers bloom only on old wood, or would I get blooms the first summer, and then the next spring, even after having cut it back? Would two big plants like that survive in a container that size (perhaps root pruning every year or so?).
Unfortunately, at this time in the summer, I go into my planning frenzy, making lists and coming up with impossible(?) ideas and ways to add more roses where there is no more space! I hope this can work, though; close your eyes and picture Semu and westerland on this white wall, seems great to me!
Thanks for any advice you can give,
Judith

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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Judith, I don't think you'll be able to grow both of them in that pot. I've grown clematis in pots and they quickly get pot bound here. Beautiful clematis, BTW!!

Barbara


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Well I know Compassion takes up alot of space. I just purchased one this spring and have it in a 30 gal. pot and it has filled it completely now. Westerland is beautiful.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Banders, you know that's not what I wanted to hear:) Well, except for the beautiful clematis part! How big a pot would I need for it to work, do you think? (in inches though, please)
Ramblinrose, what exactly is a 30 gal pot? Up here, it's all measured in centimetres (but I'm from the old imperial school, and so always translate to inches!) Would Westerland be a better choice then - is it smaller?
Thanks to you both,
Judith


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

hey barbara,

I think I overpotted 1 or 2 roses. They are in 24 inch pots. Can I add in a hanging basket mini? They are both new roses potted about a month ago.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

LOL, yeah, I know :) I don't grow either of those roses so I can't really say, but HMF seems to indicate that Westerland is smaller than Compassion. You know, find the biggest pot you can and do it. If, in a couple of years they're too much, you can divide the clematis and prune/root prune the rose and start again. Call it an experiment ;-)

Barbara


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots again

sunnishine, I'd just use some annuals for the rest of the summer. What are the roses?

Barbara


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

one is fragrant cloud...an own root from heirloom so it is small. The other one is colby school from the potless sale which I did not find out until after I planted is a 2 by 2 bush. Now that it is properly leafed out and blooming I think I am going to move it into a smaller pot and put in ebb tide from my pot ghetto.

I was think of getting something to hang down the side of the pot.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

How long have you had Fragrant Cloud? If it's still as small as my Heirloom bands it may be better to take it out and put it in a smaller pot for a while. Petunias hang down the side of the pot really well.

Barbara


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Alright, Barbara! Now that's more like it! LOL I happen to be a little stubborn and hard-headed, and probably would have tried it anyway (it wouldn't be the first time I've killed a plant!), but it's much nicer starting out with some encouragement! I am adding Westerland to my list as we speak; Im gonna go for it:) Thanks a lot.
Judith


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Yes, I echo banders advice: if your FC is still really small, put it in a 1 or 2 gallon pot until you see some little white roots peeking out of the bottom drainage holes. Then put it into the big pot. I've lost roses before when planting in pots too big for them... The drainage is never really that adequate unless the rose has got some root structure spread throughout the bulk of the potting mix, because they drink up the moisture at astonishing rates. If they're too small and in a big pot, they'll have the classic wet feet, and though they may not die, the growth will be needlessly slow until they've built up enough root. I'm battling that right now with a bare-root Camara.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Judith, I'm a little stubborn like that too ;-) I expect pictures--it's gonna be stunning!

Barbara


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

moving both roses out of these pots today. I may end up just putting the away for later but there is lots of dirt in them..lol guess I will just need more roses. I have a rose ( tahitian sunset) that I bought a few days ago in a 3 gallon pot that is 4-5 ft tall.That one could probably handle it but It will be awfully tall, to tall to smell. I will test it out.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Well this turned into a quite a thread! Probably because it was hijacked which made it even more informative:-)

I have a new question. Last weekend I purchased the rose 'What a Peach' which is in a five gallon bucket I believe. You know, the pot it came in from the nursery. I have no place to plant it at the moment. It was on sale and well you know the rest. Anyway I thought it would be fun to try and grow it in a pot after all this great discussion.

So I should go out and buy a five gallon planting pot? Seven gallon? Plastic is fine. Actually easier to move around and all. I was thinking I might try to find something similar to what was on my porch (pictured above) already. The rose itself is very happy and healthy with lots of foliage but no blooms at the moment. About 3 feet tall maybe.

Thank you folks.

Kate


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

actually the pots are smaller than I said. they are 19 inches wide and 21 tall. Still to big for the heirloom, that has been moved. I have another FC that I purchased at walmart that is pretty bushy. I transplanted that into a slightly larger pot and it is growing like crazy. I also have an ebb tide that I purchased bare root in june that is growing and blooming in a 3 gallon pot. Should I wait until next summer then transfer them into the large pots?


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

judith5bmontreal - I think your color scheme will be utterly gorgeous! I'm a professional artist, so I know whereof I speak. I thought I'd also mention that in our garden we have a small deck with an arbor, and on it are Climbing Peace and a dark blue clematis - planted by my late brother-in-law, so I don't know the name - that are incredibly beautiful together. These are both in the ground, so I know they don't relate to the potting problem, but the colors work out somewhat similar. The Peace here blooms mainly yellow/apricot with a blush of pink, and the clematis is a dark blue, though not as dark or as intense as yours. Your colors will be less delicate and more dramatic. Smashing, in fact.


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

Jim,
"So there are lots of questions like how big a pot for a climber? When to put it in the greenhouse? When to take it ou, etc. Then the basic question how will they fare to be in a pot permanently?"

My experience in zone 5 with potted climbing roses;
Get the largest pot you can handle.
I've used the very large black nursery tree pots with success. I use a two wheeled dolly to move them.
The eventual size of the plant is limited by the size of the roots so the larger the pot the larger the plant.
In our zone, a too small of a pot will allow it to freeze solid in an unheated greenhouse.
Because light conditions and humidity are the same as outdoors in a greenhouse, I move them into the greenhouse in late fall before it gets too cold outdoors. My greenhouse has sliding side panels which I open on nice days.
It's actually an old Wal*Mart parking lot greenhouse that I picked out of a dumpster.

Mine does not include the shoppers or displays but does have all the shelves plus the pipes for hanging baskets. I used them to fasten my overhead watering system to.
I generally move my potted roses inside on a nice day in late November.
This year I moved them outdoors too early and lost a few due to the April freeze. They were leafing out well and the weather was good prior to the freeze. I had done it at similar times in previous years with great success. From now on I'll wait until mid to late April.
Even most hardy climbers will lose canes due to winter dieback. I've only got a few that keep canes and most of those are once bloomers.
I bought a lot of "hardy" climbers from Great Lakes Roses. They all experienced winter dieback but came back well. I provided no winter protection so am satisfied that "hardy" meant crown hardy. That to me is more important than cane hardiness. At this time of my life I've accepted the fact that my climbers will be tall shrubs until late July. This works well for me as I can plant them closer together.
I was able to protect canes on a few potted climbers by placing them all together next to a low stone wall and surrounding them with bagged leaves over which I then piled loose leaves. When removed this spring all the canes were green to the tips. Unfortunately the April freeze killed most of those long green canes.
I was between a rock and a hard place though. By keeping them covered they would have been lost to canker.
Next year I'll move them into the greenhouse after I uncover them.
Temperatures in an unheated greenhouse will get close to the outside temperature at night but can get 40 degrees or more higher during the day when the sun is shining. I've seen inside greenhouse temps well into the 80s on sunny days in late February with outdoor temps in the teens. I find this not a problem. I will just open the door or a side panel a little to vent it.
200 growing rooted cuttings picked up in late February, repotted, and left unprotected in the greenhouse did fine and survived the April freeze just fine. The only thing I did was to provide air circulation.
Other potted roses overwintered in the greenhouse greened up as usual this spring but I moved them outdoors in late March as I usually do and lost lots of them due to the April freeze.
This was the first time I've had this happen in all my years of overwintering roses in the greenhouse.

Here is a link that might be useful: Garden Mart Greenhouse at Poly-Tex


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

sorry for the hijack....barbara lives in my area


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

No problem. The hijacking produced tons of helpful information. Maybe you Sunnishine can answer my above question about what size pot I should pot my new rose in? I have never grown a rose in pots before. Thanks.

Kate


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RE: Overwintering roses in pots

sunnishine, I'd go ahead and put those roses in larger pots now and let them grow some more roots before it gets cold. I put bareroots directly in 7-10 gallon pots.

Katefisher, roses come from nurseries in lots of different sizes of pots. If it is a 5 gallon pot and it's eventually going in the ground this year, just leave it and keep it well watered. If not, move it to a larger pot now.

Barbara


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