Lady Banks roses

Laura81September 4, 2013

My Lady Banks has not grown one bit since I planted her 6 months ago. She is in the sun most of the day. She is losing leaves and looks like crud. I am planning to take her out if she keeps doing nothing. She is on a drip line. Suggestions?

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tomatofreak(Z9 Phx USA)

I'm at a loss; this is one of the most vigorous plants I've ever had. Too much water, perhaps? Try and wait till this hellish heat is over and see what happens then. I predict we'll all perk up!

    Bookmark   September 4, 2013 at 3:26PM
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Laura81

I know I'll perk up. She is watered everyday so is it too much? I had heard such good things about them and I am really disappointed. Thanks for the response!

    Bookmark   September 4, 2013 at 4:20PM
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campv

I have one as well. The thing will turn into a monster if I let it. I don't have it on a drip. It gets hose watered when I think about it or from monsoon rain. I really treat it badly and the thing just keeps growing. I will need to trim it this week and it just got trimmed week before last. Wait don't do anything, mine had yellow leaves back in June dropped those started growing again.
It is 5 yrs old, is abused and gets full hot sun on a cement block wall. So hang in there!

    Bookmark   September 4, 2013 at 6:07PM
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campv

This is what you will end up with.
Camp Verde

    Bookmark   September 4, 2013 at 6:30PM
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Laura81

Wow, campv, that is what I want. Beautiful!!

    Bookmark   September 4, 2013 at 6:52PM
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richsd

Laura, keep in mind, campv is gardening in a different (cooler) zone than we are in. Most everything does better out of this oven heat we call home (except tender stuff, of course.)

I don't think overwatering is your problem, unless the plant is well established. But I wouldn't call a plant only 6 mo. old established.

My sister has a few of them in (Ahwatukee) and I notice zinc deficiency on their leaves. Maybe that's your plant's problem, too.

I can't believe Home Depot or Lowes doesn't even sell zinc sulfate (dummies.) I order mine online.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2013 at 10:20AM
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Laura81

Thanks, richsd, I often wondered why people here just have rocks and not plants in their yards. It is just too much of a hassle to try to grow anything. Ugh! Thanks for the info!

    Bookmark   September 5, 2013 at 11:13AM
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jaspermplants

I planted a lady banks rose a couple years ago and it have taken awhile to get started, so I would suggest you give it more time.

In my opinion, people here don't bother to learn about how to grow plants in this area, and rocks and dirt are just easier. However, that landscaping is extremely boring and HOT!

Although gardening in Phoenix is not my preference (would prefer a cooler climate with RAIN), you can grow stuff here.

Here is my yard last spring.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2013 at 11:20AM
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Laura81

Wow, jaspermplants, Your roses give me some hope. They are just fabulous.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2013 at 11:39AM
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aztreelvr

Try watering three times a week while the weather is hot, tapering to once every two weeks in winter. The amount of water will depend on the size of your Lady Banks but I imagine it would need at least 4 gallons each time you apply, perhaps a little more. As your rose grows its water needs will increase of course.

It's important for the soil to dry out just a tad before you apply more water. Soggy soils can prevent plants from absorbing nutrients like iron, nitrogen and zinc. In addition I'd recommend you add a 3 inch layer of organic mulch over the root zone, being careful not to pile it up against the trunk or base of the rose.

By the way, the world's largest Lady Bank's Rose lives in Tombstone, AZ.

Here is a link that might be useful: Landscape plant watering

    Bookmark   September 5, 2013 at 12:24PM
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Laura81

Thanks, aztreelvr, I will give it a try.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2013 at 1:46PM
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richsd

Yes, it's true the biggest Lady Banks rose is in Tombstone, however, Tombstone does not have the same hellish hot climate Phoenix does. So it's not a fair comparison.

Lately, more and more I'm blaming the municipal water suppliers in the valley (City of Phoenix, City of Mesa, etc etc.) for our gardening failures. They provide saline, alkaline water and we're expected to grow beautiful plants with this crappy water. Excuse my language and hostility, but if you really want to get angry, take a look at the water quality in cities such as Sacramento, Denver, or even Salt Lake. They all have much, much better water quality than we do (and more beautiful gardens likewise.)

I put in a call to the City of Phoenix Water Dept. today to express my frustration over this issue. They said they'd have someone get back to me. I realize they (Phoenix) doesn't have the same natural resources (and clean water) that cities like Salt lake and Denver have. However, it seems to me they could reduce the water's alkalinity by adding sulfuric acid to it.
When you consider how many trees and landscapes die due to the high alkalinity of the water here, adding sulfuric acid to the water is cheap IMO.

Who else, if anyone, has gotten worked up over this?

    Bookmark   September 5, 2013 at 6:06PM
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jaspermplants

Good job, Richsd, calling the water department. The citizens of Phoenix (area) are not usually an activist lot, so I'm glad you made the complaint. Please let us know what you find out and/or if you need more voices to add to yours. I'm always ready to lend my voice to a needed cause.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2013 at 6:18PM
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Laura81

I think the water is also the problem most of the time. When it rains everything just perks up so much more.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2013 at 7:43PM
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aztreelvr

Rainwater washes away accumulated dust so plants naturally look better. But during thunderstorms the electrical discharges of lightning split the nitrogen molecules transforming them into a plant-usable form. Rainwater carries the nitrogen to the plants who benefit from this boost of nutrients. Cool, eh?

    Bookmark   September 6, 2013 at 7:05PM
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Laura81

Very cool indeed!!

    Bookmark   September 6, 2013 at 7:33PM
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lazy_gardens

Laura - It's probably establishing a root system. Don't give up on it until it's been in the ground for a couple of years.

Typically the first year of a shrub is little top growth, the second year is a small showing and the third year on is much faster.

Do NOT water it every day a tiny amount. Next year, set the drip system (adjust the timer or change the drip heads) so it gets a couple gallons per watering but only twice a week, starting in the spring when you see new growth.

The third year ... more water per session, but even less frequently.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2013 at 10:05AM
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Laura81

Lazygardens, Thanks for the input. I'll adjust my expectations and the amount of water.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2013 at 12:32PM
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GeeS 9b

@ Laura81: You shouldn't water anything every day. If a plant actually needs water every day, better to just let it die, as it will probably do just that before long anyway.

Lazygardens has this well-surrounded. Adjust your drip to two times per week, 90 minutes per session next spring, then keep a close eye on everything and adjust accordingly. You cannot make that change now, wait until early spring. Plants new in the ground trying to establish may need 3-4 weeks of watering three times per week.

One more small point: It is generally a poor idea to introduce new plants to your landscape during summer. It can be done, but typically results in mass casualties for all but the more experienced gardeners here.

Lady Banks Rose does well here -- once established -- but reacts poorly to our heat until established. Just try to keep it alive for now with no expectations, then establish it with the watering regimen detailed above next spring. Good luck!

    Bookmark   September 10, 2013 at 4:25PM
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Laura81

GermanStar, I water everything once a day except cacti. I am such a beginner. I am also an impulsive garden shopper if it looks interesting I buy it.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2013 at 4:53PM
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GeeS 9b

Your plants will never establish as long as you continue that regimen. If the existing root system is supplying all the water needed all the time, no reason to grow more roots. You are also inviting fungal infections by not allowing soil to dry thoroughly between waterings. The reasoning behind infrequent deep watering is to place water deep beneath the plant to encourage deep root growth toward that water source. Once that happens to the degree at which good foliage growth resumes, the plant is considered established.

You might benefit from a good SW gardening book to explain the basics and act as a handy reference. There are many fine choices; my recommendation is Arizona Gardener's Guide by Mary Irish, a fellow Agavephile.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2013 at 5:38PM
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Laura81

Thanks for the book recommendation. I feel sorry for the plants in the hot sun and I want to water everything. Not logical.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2013 at 6:35PM
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greyongray

This thread is helpful, since I killed two LBRs that I unwisely planted during the summer. The photos on another thread of MaryMCP's covered chain link fence have got me wanting to do the same to our large run of chain link! So this thread is encouraging me to try again and that if I can get the plants established, they will be able to handle some neglect in the future.

Because the only thing left after that is cats claw ;)

    Bookmark   September 11, 2013 at 5:28PM
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dblcross

I have a Lady Banks that is 3 yrs old. It's outside in a very large pot on a deck. Last spring it flowered. Last winter was freezing for a number of days. This spring the lady does not show any signs of life. The main branch is brown but the small branches are pale green and do not snap when broken. They look alive. I hate to pull it so what should I do?

    Bookmark   March 26, 2014 at 4:24PM
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campv

Ok I am the one with the lady banks picture on the cement block wall.(about 20 blogs above).
Here in Camp Verde it can get real cold a couple of years back it got down to 12 degrees and those temps lasted for about 3-4 days. Mine came back as I suspect yours will as well. It is also possible that the roots could of froze in the pot. Give it a little more time see if it doesn't leaf. If it doesn't leaf by mid April, then I think it might be a goner.Sorry

    Bookmark   March 26, 2014 at 4:38PM
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