August 23, 2023

White rose bush in garden

There's a Number of Reasons To Transplant Your Rose Bush

You may be planning some extension of your house or just want a new look to your garden, or you may feel your roses need more light. Whatever the reason, transplanting roses is a tricky procedure but with sufficient planning and care it can be done successfully. Transplanting in summer can be done but winter months are best when the roses are dormant. 

Identify the new spot

It is absolutely essential that you identify the new spot in your garden for your roses. Keep in mind the usual stuff: ample sunlight and space around each rose bush to allow it breathe. Once you have identified the spot, clean it up thoroughly. You don’t want any debris or roots of other plants cluttering the space. Start watering the spot two days ahead of the transplant to keep the ground moist and ready for the plants. 

Prepare your rose bush for the transplant

Transplanting can be extremely traumatic for the roots so it is very important that you water the rose bush thoroughly and frequently every day until the day of the transplant. Two days of deep watering is recommended prior to transplant.  

Some experts recommend pruning the plant to its bare essentials so if you believe in pruning, go for it. The roots can concentrate more on settling in if there is less foliage. If you are one of those gardeners who talk to your plants, this may be the best time to explain the transition to your roses! 

Prepare the soil of the new spot

Dig a hole at least 1 foot deep and 1 foot wide – if the plant is bigger, make a larger hole. A cup of bone meal is said to help transplanted roses. Mix it in with the soil and also add some root hormone. Bunch up some soil in the center, at the bottom of the hole, to make a small mound. 

Dig up your plant

Use a spade to dig right around the plant – about 1 foot away would be ideal. Dig deep and then press down to the ground. This will lever the plant out of the ground without much damage to the roots.  Keeping the roots intact is very important. 

Transplanting Your Rose

Place the root ball on top of the mound, in the new spot, allowing the roots to spread down the sides.  Fill up about a third of the hole with soil and mulch right up to the top. Take care not to mulch close to the plant. It would be a good idea to change the mulch every season.

If your weather is generally nippy, place the bud union an inch below the soil. If you are blessed with warm temperatures, the bud union can be an inch or two above the soil. The plant will tend to sink a little into the soil while it adjusts itself so place it at a slightly higher level. Ensure sufficient space around each plant while transplanting roses.

Watering Your Transplanted Rose Bush

Roses are constantly thirsty and keeping the roots moist at all times ensures healthy growth of the plant. Ensure the soil drains well and that you don’t leave the ground soaking wet. The roots will rot if they are kept in wet soil. Watering, frequently and deeply, is the key to a successful transplant. 

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