Shrub Roses are the new kids on the block
Roses are undoubtedly the Queen of Flowers. With an incredible variety of shapes, colours and scents, garden roses are a quintessential part the English garden.
There is a rose to suit every taste; there are many colours, scents and flower shapes, as well as various styles and growth habits. Bush roses, climbing roses, standard roses, espalier roses and ground-covering roses are common.
But today’s busy rose-lover can enjoy all the traditional colour, scent and flower power without the routine chores, by giving high-maintenance hybrid teas and floribundas the cold shoulder in favour of easy-care modern shrub roses.Shrub roses are the easy going go-anywhere kind, they bring a combination of style and manageability and they will sit happily in mixed borders with perennials and other flowering shrubs.
The varieties seem endless; you can choose ones with a simple wild-rose character or large, glamorous, single, saucer-like flowers. For all those with a soft spot for old-fashioned roses, nurseryman David Austin has developed a group he calls English Roses. These hybrids have all the charm and nostalgia of the more demanding oldies, many with the same evocative fragrance, but most importantly they have a far longer flowering season.
Roses put a tremendous amount of energy into creating their flower show, so they deserve a little tending loving care when planting.
Dig a hole that’s roughly twice the size of the pot. Sprinkle a handful of rose food into the bottom, add more organic matter and mix it well in with a fork. Roses love mycorrhizal fungi (such as Rootgrow), sprinkling this into the hole will help the roses establish themselves.
When you are ready, tip the plant gently out of its pot and sit it in place so the base of the root ball is on the mycorrhizal fungi and the top is a couple of inches below ground level to make sure the graft is buried, firm back the soil and water well.
If we do have a dry summer new roses will need to be watered and will benefit from some rose feed during the growing season
Pruning is a simple task; regular deadheading during summer will encourage flowering and then cut out any weak or dead stems and shorten long, straggly ones if needed to improve the shape between December to early March.