Is there anything that I need to do after my roses are pruned ? 

Remove all the fallen leaves, then spray the plants with a mixture of Mancozeb mixed with Winter Oil or Pest Oil or Eco Oil or similar. Make sure that the Mancozeb is mixed with the water in the spray unit before the Oil is added, then spray all of the plants and the ground around beneath each plant to remove most of the fungal spores which cause Black Spot etc. We recommend that Neutrog Seamungus be applied now to improve the soil.
A good mulch should be applied before new shoots appear, to ensure that the shoots do not get broken off whilst the mulch is being spread.

Where are the best nurseries to purchase roses and new releases ? 

Click here to view a list of Rose Nurseries where you can order and purchase quality roses.


I lost most of my leaves last summer due to Spider Mite – what should I do ? 

Spider Mite mainly only becomes a problem during the hot weather in summer and that you should check under the leaves regularly during this period for any signs of very fine webs and very small dark spots (which are the mites) and a slight yellowing of the leaves. If this is apparent then they need to spray water with the garden hose under all of the leaves (early morning) each day for several days and dampen the ground under the roses to create some humidity which the Mites do not like. If a really bad case occurs then you will need to purchase a Miticide (this is usually quite expensive) and apply this as directed on the underside of the leaves. No more than 2 applications of the same Miticide spray should be applied in the one year to prevent a build up of resistance to these products.


My Standard Rose grows very tall and only has one flower on each cane – can I do anything to overcome this ? 

You probably have a Hybrid Tea Rose which grows in this manner and really should only be planted as a bush rose. We recommend that you purchase Standard Roses which are Floribundas, small growing shrub roses (some of the David Austin Roses or similar)  which have multiple flowers on each of the canes and create the overall ball effect covered in flowers, which repeat flower throughout the season and which you are really looking for. It is a good practice to visit a rose garden where these type of roses are growing, to understand how large they grow, how the flowers look and speak to the owner for any advice.


I have some climbing roses and are not sure how to prune them for the best results – what do I do ?

Climbing roses are pruned differently to normal bush roses which makes it rather difficult to verbally advise on how to prune your particular climber, as they are generally all different, due to the various growing situations and conditions (i.e. on a trellis, over an arch, on a fence etc.). Would recommend that you attend one of the Rose Society of SA pruning demonstrations to see and participate in the pruning of a climber, which will assist you in understanding what is required. Alternatively you could ask the RSSA if one of their members would be willing to visit your garden to advise what is  required to achieve the best result.


How do I grow rose plants from cuttings and when should I do this ?

Click here to view an article on producing roses from cuttings.


How do I get my roses to bloom for a wedding in April ?

If superb blooms are wanted in April then the practice of summer trimming must be carried out.
This will mean fewer blooms in Feb. and March.

The technique is as follows:

  1. Gradually reduce the quantity of water in January, but not by too much. This will harden the bushes.
  2. Pick flowers with short stems only, or preferably do not pick flowers at all. The flowers should be left on the bush and the dead heads removed if they are unsightly.
  3. The third stage is actual trimming. In Adelaide, the blooms will be at their best approximately 52 – 60 days after summer trimming. Some slight regional variations may occur.

For example, if blooms are required for the target date of 13 April then summer trimming will need to be carried out about the 16th – 19th February.  Having reduced the quantity of water for the plants in January, they are then prepared for summer trimming by heavy watering early in February. This is followed some days later by the application of Rose Fertilizer (the Rose Society recommends Neutrog Sudden Impact for Roses – 10 kg per 100 roses) following the manufacturer’s instructions. Following this, there should be another watering to water-in the fertilizer pellets. A week or so later the bushes will then be in a suitable state for summer trimming. The actual technique for summer trimming is to go over the bushes as though you were picking a bunch of roses and cut to a plump outward eye on each stem (usually the second, five-leaflet down the stem).

A word of warning is required here because the operative procedure is summer trimming.  It is sometimes wrongly referred to as summer pruning and the inexperienced grower must resist the temptation to cut heavily. All one is doing is cutting to a good bud (eye). The action of cutting is a triggering phenomenon for the process to start. Note that Floribundas and Miniatures need to be trimmed at least a week before Hybrid Teas as they are slower to come into growth. Likewise the heavier petalled varieties of Hybrid Teas need to be trimmed a few days before the others as they are slower to repeat.

After trimming, continue watering once a week and this will stimulate bushes to grow vigorously and produce large blooms on long stems.

Remember the last component is the weather  –   severe / abnormal weather conditions will affect growth.  In cold weather the blooms will be produced slowly and in very hot weather (warm nights) blooms will move more quickly therefore mother nature may have a hand in the final result.

This article was first published in a hand-book,  Rose Society of SA ‘Rose Culture’  written by
A. Campbell, M. Ross, D. Stringer and revised by Doug Gregory – all famous Adelaide Rosarians with many years of experience.