Blooming Guide: Growing Gorgeous Roses in Pennsylvania
Sometimes cultural references are only half-true: roses don’t have to be red. While the romantic red roses of yore are timelessly beautiful, there are many exciting varieties just waiting for you to add to your garden.
They fit in easily to any design — or can be used as a focal point in your landscape — and their scent is captivating enough to have inspired the famous phrase, “Stop and smell the roses.”
But growing roses isn’t always straightforward. Homeowners living in continental climates like Pennsylvania need to be mindful of certain specifics to ensure their roses stay happy and healthy year-round. Here’s what you should know about growing these breathtaking beauties.
How to Grow Beautiful Roses in Pennsylvania
Many know roses only as the deep red flowers you give to show your love or adoration for another. But in reality, roses come in many different colors and sizes. Around 13 species of roses grow in the wilds of Pennsylvania — and this fact alone shows that roses can not only survive, but also thrive in the state.
However, not all roses are hardy like wild roses. The roses you will find in most gardens require special care to stay healthy and look their best. To avoid the pitfalls of tending to roses, try these tips:
Select the Right Variety
If you want lovely roses that come with less maintenance, look for modern shrub or landscape roses. These varieties are more disease resistant and don’t need as much attention or pest control.
They’re also more fragrant than other roses, and the fragrance is an essential element for many gardening enthusiasts and visitors alike.
However, these roses only bloom once and won’t bloom through summer. So if you would prefer a long-blooming variety, the additional care required may be worth the effort.
Keep Sunlight Needs in Mind
Roses need sunlight, preferably morning sunlight, to grow their best. They’ll ideally have around six hours of sunlight, though some roses do well in partial shade.
Space Them Properly
Space your roses apart at least 30-36” to ensure they get good air circulation. Proper circulation is essential to avoiding disease. Roses also don’t get along with tree and shrub roots, so keep that in mind before planting them.
Provide Them with Quality Soil
Roses need high-quality soil to thrive. While some older varieties can perform well in lower-quality soils, most new species need moist soil with good drainage. The soil must also be fertile, with a high amount of organic matter. Roses can grow beautifully even in clay soils if you meet their other requirements.
You can improve less ideal soil by providing fertilizer regularly. You’ll also see more success if you add organic materials like compost or ground bark.
Water Roses Thoroughly
Rose roots love lots of water, but the foliage — the flowers, leaves, and exposed stems — don’t. You should aim to water roses every seven to ten days during periods of little rainfall.
Water directly at the base of the plant, and water them in the morning for best results. Getting the foliage wet makes the plant more susceptible to disease, so avoid sprinkling water over the top of the flowers.
Defend Against Insects
Even the less needy rose varieties will need help fighting against pests. Japanese beetles and rose slugs are the banes of any rose gardener or rosebush. Some roses — like the rugosa rose — are more insect resistant than others, but most will need your help to stay healthy and safe from an onslaught of hungry insects.
Deadhead at the Right Times
Deadheading, or the act of snipping off old flowers to encourage new blooms, is something many gardeners commonly do with roses. Leave your roses alone once late summer hits; this allows them to grow rosehips, which can help these plants stay hardy in the winter.
Ensure Your Roses Thrive with a Professional Landscaper
By keeping these tips in mind, you can enjoy healthy, beautiful roses in your yard or garden. Our team of landscaping experts can help you choose the right varieties for your property, as well as take care of their planting and maintenance.
Get in touch with us today to get a quote for your gardening project!