Is my soil a disaster for roses?!
OK, I have done the soil testing with the home kit and am shocked by the results. Soil pH is 7.5 (which I suspected) phosphorus shows the highest reading and nitrogen and potassium show the lowest readings. I gather these tests may not be too reliable but what is the best way to proceed now? I have bought a group of Austins and Eden climbers and placed them all along a wire fence at approx. 1.5 meter intervals. I did add about 1/3 organic store bought organic compost to the large planting holes, but nothing else.
My provisional plan is as follows:
Lower soil pH with sulphur feeds (70% organic liquid sulphur feed is available to me here - would this work?)
Add layer of rotted horse manure
Top with coconut coir mulch - not sure if I should do these two steps only after the first bloom cycle, or earlier (now) as it will already be hot in 2 months' time.
Irrigate with drippers at rate of approx. 12 liters twice per week, after the rains have stopped.
Add slow-release fertiliser (15-7-15) every 2 months, after first bloom.
Add seeweed extract throughout growing season, for micronutrients.
Perhaps give roses a dose of Confidor at start of season to ward off pests (which last summer attacked my citrus, frangipanis and jasmine).
Experiment with banana skins, underplanting with garlic and parsley etc.
I would love to hear comments, thoughts and suggestions on this schedule. I have never grown a rose in my life but the pictures of folks' gardens here have inspired me to try and I am deternined to succeed!
I haven't started a compost bin yet -that is the next project, so I need a plan that will get the roses through this season. I do not live in the US, and the majority of products I see mentioned here are not available to me. Nor is alfalfa! (although an organic product with chicken meal is).
Thanks so much!