Feeding bands and 1 gal in summer

kittymoonbeamAugust 31, 2012

Some of my roses look so hungry right now. I have been watering and watering due to the heat and I feel like the roses have nothing left in the pots to grow on. Last year I fed some fish emulsion to bands and two days later a heat wave came and fried the foliage. Luckily nothing died but some of the bands dropped all the leaves. I put them in the shade and was so angry with myself for causing it. Slowly they grew new leaves again.

A few weeks ago it was brutally hot and I put the smaller roses under a tree. Then we had some blessed weather that consisted of overcast mornings with moist coastal air followed by cool and breezy afternoons in the high 70s and low 80s. The roses got excited and began growing. I got some outstanding blooms on big established roses. Now the temps are back to high 80s and 90s again. The new foliage is light and I really want to feed them but I'm afraid to burn the new leaves.

I was thinking of just repotting with newer soil but would this bother the roots too much and cause trouble? They don't look overgrown for the pots. I was going to plant the 1 gal. in fall right into the ground.

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jerijen(Zone 10)

Kitty, we don't keep roses in bands for more than a day or so. They go right into 1-G -- that goes for purchased bands, or little plants of similar size that DH starts here.

We don't feed them ANYTHING while they're in 1-G -- but we are vigilant to give them plenty of water when the weather heats up. During this recent horrible stretch of hot days, I have watered those little pots almost daily.

They have rewarded me for my efforts by putting on a real show of growth, and even some bloom, where I have not disbudded.

(We have several pots that have no name tags, thanks to our youngest Dalmatian girl, who seems to have a passion for plastic name tags. So, THOSE pots I'm for sure not disbudding! I need 'em to bloom, so I can tell what they are!)

When they have substantial roots emerging from the bottom of the 1-G, they need to either go to new homes, or get potted up. But until they have established themselves in 5-G, we don't feed them. At this stage, I am more interested in them growing roots than blooming.


    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 3:51PM
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steelrose(z9 SF Bay CA)


What kind of soil do you use in your pots?

Would love to know.


    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 5:49PM
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fogrose(zone 10/sunset 17)

>>When they have substantial roots emerging from the bottom of the 1-G, they need to either go to new homes, or get potted up. But until they have established themselves in 5-G, we don't feed them. At this stage, I am more interested in them growing roots than blooming.This is very interesting Jeri. I put my bands into 2gal pots and plant when ready, or on to 5gal if I feel they need it. But I've been using a manure/compost blend as a mulch for the pots then as the plants get a bit older have been using Osmocote. Am I doing the wrong thing? Some roses are taking VERY long to grow with this method, although some do grow super fast. Appreciate your opinion.


    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 7:54PM
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AquaEyes 7a New Jersey

Diane, I also did something like what you describe with bands I received. The first round of bands I got a few years ago were for a community garden project. I used 5-gallon nursery pots, and the planting mix was 2 parts peat, 2 parts Peters' topsoil, 1 part composted cow manure, 1 part shredded cedar mulch. Into each pot, I mixed 1 cup of Rosetone and 1/2 cup Epsom salts. They were planted out after a few months of growing in their pots. I chose larger pots because they were going into new beds, and I wanted them to have as much "good stuff" in the planting hole as possible, and have it easily done (dig the hole, drop the contents of the pot inside).

The other time, I used 2-gallon nursery pots, and modified the soil mix slightly. This time, it was 2 parts peat, 1 part topsoil, 1 part composted cow manure. Into each pot I mixed 1/2 cup organic rose fertilizer (this time trying Jobes Organics Knockout Rose Food) and 1/4 cup Epsom salts.

I used no other fertilizer -- just added water as needed. I ordered 40 bands, and they were mostly "farewell gifts" for friends when I left Buffalo, NY. A few I kept for myself. They all arrived in the end of April, 2012. These pics were taken in the beginning of August, 2012 -- 3 1/2 months after being potted up into the 2-gallons. To be fair, I kept the "wimpiest" ones for myself (except Souv de Victor Landeau, which was one of the larger bands received). In the last couple of weeks, they've all put on more growth than seen in the pics below.



Mme Isaac Pereire

Darlow's Enigma

Charles de Mills

Cardinal de Richelieu

And the biggest of all, Souv de Victor Landeau

    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 8:51PM
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I also immediately repot any bands which follow me home. That's just too small a root ball to keep from outright frying on a hot, windy day around here. Those which seem to need some more time to mature, go into gallons. The ones which scream they are about to explode, go right into two gallons. I have quite a few one, two and three gallon cans right now and I have fertilized many of them this summer to push them, both for breeding with them as well as to mature them to go to their new homes. I water then religiously, nearly daily with the recent weather. I have used Vigoro All Purpose, very similar to Miracle Gro, but about a buck a box less. I water very well earlier in the afternoon, after the sun moves off the pots and mix a seven gallon bucket of the Vigoro at a bit more than half strength. After two or so hours of the water being permitted to be taken up by the plants, I scoop out how much I want to give each one with a foam cup. They have demonstrated they really appreciate the food and none have shown any symptoms of complaint. Kim

    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 9:59PM
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seil zone 6b MI

I don't buy bands very often because they tend to not winter well the first year. They're often still too small. When I have bought them I've been potting them up to a 1 gal. pot immediately. Those band pots are way too small and don't give the dears a chance to grow a decent size root ball. And I found that going to a bigger size pot wasn't a good idea either. They seem to do best in the 1 gal. ones for the first season. I do fertilize but with a weakened solution than I would use for a full grown rose, usually about 1/2 strength. And for me they need super duper extra winter protection!

    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 11:24AM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Weak fish emulsion, like one quarter strength, but more often, once a month, and never full sun, just a couple hours in the morning.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 12:06PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

In our usually cooler climate, 1-G seems to be optimal, as we get best root-growth. In our experience in THIS micro-climate, bands put into larger pots often just STALL.

As to potting soil, DH usually mixes a little of this and a little of that, so it varies from one time to another. And like Hoovs, our pots get morning sun, rather than intense afternoon sun.


    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 1:07PM
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strawchicago 5a IL

Hi Kitty: I bought 14 bands from Burlington this past March, and I put them into 2-gallons pots immediately (plastic pot for $5 each). I also got 18 roses gallon-size from RU, Chamblee's, and 1 Walmart and put them into pots immediately. Now most of them are in the ground, planted very deep for zone 5a winter.

For soil in the pots I followed both books, one by Field Roebuck of Texas, and the other by Ontario nurseryman Douglas Green. Here's my pots experiment with 32 roses:

1) The worst one is Ball Professional Pottting soil, NO slow-released fertilizer, mixed with 1 cup Hollytone (with bacteria like Rosetone, and sulfur). The growth is VERY SLOW.

2) MiracleGro potting soil (green bag, pH of 6.5) mixed with 2 cups peat moss, 2 cups native clay soil, 2 cups alfalfa meal. This was too wet for our rainy weather, and I had to drill extra-holes in the pot. The mix is too acidic, blackspot magnets Scentsational and Comte de Chambord broke out in BS, and I had to mulch them with horse manure, before they are clean.

3) See #4 below, except I ran out out potting soil, and topdressed mini Love Ya Dad with my native clay soil. It worked well: no blackspots, and it bloomed like crazy. The clay soil on top acted like a fertile crust to keep the below soil moist. This pot has the most bloom.

4) MiracleGro Organic potting soil (brown bag, pH of 7), mixed with 2 cups of native soil, 2 cups peat moss, and 2 cups of alfalfa meal. This gave the best result: Annie Laurie McDowell bought as a band is now 2' x 2.5' wide, too big, I'll have to put her in the ground. Jacques Cartier as a band became huge, and I had to put him in the ground after 1 month being bought. Also zero blackspot on roses with this neutral pH potting soil.

All my 32 pots were in full-sun, except for Paul Neyron in partial shade. I don't fertilize them except for topdressing with alfalfa meal mixed with fluffy potting soil before a heavy rain. I did it twice this summer. I was sick of pinching off Annie' buds constantly, so I gave her acid fertilizer high in nitrogen this month. She's the only one that gets it, since I want her to be very big before burying her bud union 4" below ground level.

See below picture of Crimson Glory as a band, with 1 month of growth, it's catching up with the gallon size rose behind it.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 8:26PM
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I am going to pot the bands up now. I worried that being so small, disturbing the roots in summer could be bad. These bands arrived so small. It looked like they were barely rooted when they came. I have gotten larger ones that I put into 1 gal. pots right away. I will move the 1 gals into 2 gal. pots. What always worries me most about having small roses in pots is the Santa Ana winds in fall. Sometimes the pots can dry out overnight when the hot wind blows. It seems to start at night when we are sleeping and when I used to have a tree outside my window I could hear it moving when the Santa Anas started to blow.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2012 at 3:22AM
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strawchicago 5a IL

Good luck with your pots, Kitty!

Kim Rupert in his dry & hot climate uses MiracleGro Moisture Control Potting soil - he doesn't have to water often and it handles alkaline water well.

For my pot experiment I put 2 cups of peat moss (pH of 4.5)per pot to balance out my alkaline water (pH of 8). We had a dry early summer. When our regular rain started July, I had to drill extra holes in the pot. I had my pots in full sun temporarily since I wanted to see how each one handle heat, so I know whether to dig a hole in full-sun or partial shade.

For long term planting in pots, it's best to use MiracleGro Moisture Control potting soil, with morning sun only. We had only 3 days at 100 degrees in zone 5a summer, and plenty of rain & humidity afterwards - but that was enough pot-watering for me.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2012 at 10:21AM
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