Any ideas on these tips from Field Roebuck's rose book?
I am looking at the book recommended by Rosefolly, "Complete Roses..." by Field Roebucks. I am checking on your experience with regard to: Propagation by soil layering. My Mom had 100% success with that on Rose of Sharons and Weigelas even in hot and dry summer. I had zero success with those plants through propagation by cuttings.
About propagation of Austins: it's OK if the rose if 20 years old, right? Decobug put together a list of Austins and when they were released, under the thread "Your opinion please on the most beautiful, valuable old Austins". If I propagate old roses, I have tons of corkscrew willow branches that I can soak to water with.
Other neat ideas from Field Roebuck's book:
1) Put epsom salt in Sandy soil only. This is correct, since sticky clay soil like mine is tested exceedingly high in magnesium.
2) The level of calcium is just as important as soil pH. This is correct. I'm next to a lime stone quarry, but my soil is tested barely adequate in calcium. EarthCo., the soil testing company, recommends gypsum for my soil. Calcium bounds up with phosphorus in alkaline soil, and plants at optimal pH of 6.5 like roses have a harder time extracting phosphorus.
- Marigolds are spider-mites magnets, but good for deterring nematodes. I hope this is not true, since marigolds like my alkaline soil.
4) The herb rue is an insect repellent, and is especially effective against Japanese Beetles. The book stated that Geraniums also have the same quality. I planted geraniums next to Austin roses, and zero beetles - they ate my Knock-outs instead.
5) The edible alliums - garlic chives, chives, and onions are efffective against aphids and spider mites. True, I planted these while giving William Shakespeare a hefty boost of nitrogen via alfalfa meal - zero aphids!! Years ago, I had tons of aphids with chemical fertilizer and planting cilantro around hybrid teas.
6) No need to use loose gravel at the bottom of pots. False for rainy weather like mine, with spring flash flood and week-long rain - gravels at the bottom of pot is a must.
7) No need to pick up diseased leaves. True, I make a mess, a huge litter in rainy weather with zero blackspots since lime in my soil and horse manure is a potent fungicide.
8) Both rock and colloidal phosphates are ineffective in pH higher than 6.4 - True, Colorado State Extension mentioned that both rock phosphate and bone meal cannot be utilized at pH above 7.
9) High potassium fertilizer encourages rust. We don't have rust in our cold and rainy weather, so I don't know.
- The book states: Rose mosaic won't spread from plant to plant. Insects or mites can't carry it, and neither does pruning shears. Rose mosaic virus spreads only through propagation. From my microbiology class in college, I would say true. Virus is spread via a moist medium. If the pruning shear is dried with a paper towel, that's good enough. I pruned fungi-infected trees then left the shear open up in hot sun, and the Ultraviolet ray from the sun was effective. We zapped bacteria in the lab with ultraviolet ray. Most virus are more fragile than bacteria, so any methods of drying would kill them, be it air, sun, or paper towel. The exception is AIDS virus and needles that need to be sterilized in full strength bleach.
There are lots of very good tips in the book. This is the best book with lots of picture. Thank you, Rosefolly, for recomending the book.