Knockout Roses/Cuttings

zozzl(z9 FL)June 1, 2007

I have started adding Knockout Roses to my yard because they fit my criteria of no care/poor soil/blistering sun tolerant:)

I am wondering if these are grafted roses? I wanted to make some cuttings for the October swap but am I wasting my time to make cuttings? Do they root easily?

Also, I am not having much success with buddleias (they went to buddleia heaven), is there a trick in Florida to keeping them happy (no care, poor soil, blistering sun tolerant?)

Thanks, Pat

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tony_k_orlando(Z9 Fl)


Hope you find out the answers because I am tempted to plant some knockouts too after snatching some cuttings.


    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 8:54AM
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Great minds think alike...

I have a spot I would like to plant a small Knockout hedge but wasn't brave enough to think about doing it from cuttings. Now you have me thinking that would be a great, affordable way to do the hedge. I want to put in at least 6 Rainbow Knockouts, maybe 8. I'm fairly certain MerryGro used to do them on fortuniana. Leu Gardens has a beautiful Knockout group - maybe they can provide some information.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 9:21AM
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manature(9B Sanford, FL)

I've had my current own root Knock Out for 3 years and it is huge (trunk about 3 1/2" thick) and seemingly healthy. Now that doesn't mean it will live as long as one on Fortuniana, I know, but it's a good sign.

If I were buying more, I'd probably hunt for grafted ones, if I could find them, just to be sure. But if I were looking to add a bunch, I would certainly give rooting them a try. What have you got to lose? The cuttings are free, after all, and if you get a lot of free roses, even for a shorter time than grafted ones would live, you are still ahead of the game.

Kate, the Rainbow Knockouts are somewhat smaller & lower, apparently, than the ones you normally see. Mine doesn't seem to be growing at all, and it is only about 2' high and wide. I think it WILL grow, eventually, but I'm pretty sure it would make a lower hedge than the red or pink ones.

And I've never been able to grow buddleia here, either. The best I've been able to do is keep one alive in a whiskey barrel, but it only developed a few branches. *sniff* I would settle for smaller plants than the ones grown up north, but I'd like them to be bigger and healthier than the ones I've tried in the past. If anyone has any secrets for them, I'd love to know what they are.


    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 9:58AM
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Yes, I had read that the Rainbow was lower and smaller. Lots of blossoms though and that's a good thing. Using this rose is in my plan for that yet-to-be-dug bed around and under the citrus trees in back. Low and small is good because I don't want to block the view of the lake or crowd out the little citrus trees. My neighbor isn't a gardener but has a few yellow hibiscus in her front yard so the yellow centers on Rainbow should be a pretty transition from her landscaped and controlled yard to my riot of color.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 10:28AM
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manature(9B Sanford, FL)

I think you'll like it a lot, Kate. Sounds like it is perfect for what you want. But it isn't so easy to find, yet. I bought the very last one they had at Designing Women, and haven't seen it elsewhere...YET. I'm sure it will soon be all over. It reminds me of the OGR mutabilis when it blooms, just in that there are several shades of pink, yellow and coral going on at once.


    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 10:39AM
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zozzl(z9 FL)

I've been buying the Knockout roses at the Central Florida Flea Market for $10. I don't know if they are grafted but they are growing beautifully. I want to get the yellow one too but I haven't seen any. I did see a house with the entire front planted with red Knockouts and that is what gave me the idea to fill in with them. Kate, I think a hedge of this would be gorgeous and sooooo easy....

Also, wondering what is everyone's favorite flowering bush. I am finally removing my house-eating ginger so I have a space next to the front door and I would like something very colorful that doesn't get too big and with flowers that would show up from the street and tolerate hot afternoon sun. Hibiscus is good but I am thinking more exotic. I don't ask for much do I:)

    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 2:10PM
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I heard back from Leu Gardens on the Knockout question. (Yes, I'm at work today. No, I'm not working all that hard. That's why they call it Friday.) They expect it would grow for at least a few years on own-root because it's such a hardy rose, but all of theirs are on fortuniana. They believe this will keep them healthy and strong for many years and recommend the grafted roses.

Pat - for the shrub spot by the house, think about thunbergia erecta - Kings Mantle. Intense blue flowers almost all year long. You can prune it to any size.

If anyone sees Rainbow, please let me know! Even though I'm not ready for the new bed, I would put one of these roses in and see if I can get cuttings to grow.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 2:51PM
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I should have mentioned this in the prior post: The answer from Leu Gardens came from Robert Bowden, the Gardens' Director and a respected rosarian. If you have rose questions you can send him an email - there's a link on the Leu website.
I highly recommend the class he teaches. Part of it's in the classroom and then he takes the group out into the rose garden.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 3:25PM
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most of my roses are on fortuniana, but i'm growing a bunch of knock outs on their own roots. i started all but one (the original) from cuttings -- they are VERY easy to start by weaving (into a small pot). just google -- "air weave propagation" for directions.

mine are all the light-pink sport of fortuniana. in my mom's yard i planted a bunch of fortuniana knock outs, the original deep-pink ones. not my favorite color in the world, but they are EXTREMELY vigorous and tolerant when on fortuniana.

my one bit of wisdom with these: while they are very drought tolerant (for roses, at least) once establish, and they sneer at black spot, they really look good only when consistently and heavily fertilized. and they have a distinct preference for the petroleum-based fertilizer.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 5:37PM
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kelpie473(9b sw Fla)

Is Knockout still protected by a patent? I'm not sure how long that lasts.

That said though I have two that have grown over the drive and need to cut them back and would like to see if I can kill those cuttings too. I've looked for air weave propagation directions but get nothing on it - could you give a link please? I'd be grateful if I could find a way to actually root some rose cuttings.


    Bookmark   June 1, 2007 at 5:49PM
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on the buddleia--
i planted one a few weeks ago. it was very scraggly and in a 1-gallon container. i had plkanted it in one spot and then moved it within 2 weeks, uncertain whether it would take 2 transplants. but it looks better than it has all month. the spot it's in gets direct sun from about 8am-2pm right now, and soem dappled shade for another couple of hours. i didn't amend soil, but it is next to a fence, on the west side of the yard, and it's got leaves where it didn't have any before on the lower ends of the branches. the only other care i've given it is watr from the drip lines that are on that edge of the yard, and some deadheading to get those leaves going and filling out.

good luck-- i love these bushes-- had a 12ft one in virginia that was covered with tiget swallowtails all of july! different climate, but a good memory :)

    Bookmark   June 2, 2007 at 9:45AM
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rosesr4me(z9 FL_west)

kelpie473 - maybe air layering propagation is what ill-mannered-ache was referring to???

Here is a link that might be useful: air layering link

    Bookmark   June 7, 2007 at 4:31PM
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I've had a knockout for a couple of years-own root. As others have reported it is doing well.

I've seen that yellow knockout and I don't like the growth habit. It isn't a nice compact bush with lots of flowers like the other knockouts. It throws long high canes and does not flower to my satisfaction.

Sorry to hear this news of the buddleia. I just planted one a couple of months ago. It gets some sun/shade. I've been watering it often because it keeps wilting. I finally got some mulch on it and that may be helping.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2007 at 10:37AM
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kelpie473(9b sw Fla)

Thanks rosesr4me, I sure couldn't find anything on the air weave prop. and I looked! This reminded me I could just go out and ground layer - why didn't I think of that before???


    Bookmark   June 8, 2007 at 6:11PM
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