Rain... rain... rain ... help!

molie(z6 CT)June 9, 2006

Here in CT we have had nothing but rain since the snows departed. It's not only depressing but also terrible for my western-facing rose garden. This is the first year I've ever found black spots on my plants. I've planted them apart in an open area, they (usually) get great sun, but we live on a tidal river that has overflowed many times. My garden is elevated and would never flood, but the constant rain worries me. I never used chemicals, dust, even organic controls, because I worry about the wildlife in our yard and the products leaching into the river.

So... my question.... will these roses survive? Do I just cut them back and wait for next year? Or is there something I can do during this rainy "spell" that will help?

Molie

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remy_gw

Hi Molie,
There is really nothing you can do but wait it out. Conditions are right for blackspot to florish where you are right now, but once the weather changes it will slowly go away. Roses in general are pretty darn tough. I used to worry, but I don't anymore. My husband calls them my weeds because of how they grow. I've seen biblical rains, drought, heat, bugs, blackspots, etc., but the roses are no worse for the wear. Try to be optimistic and think that next June will be a great one: )
Remy

    Bookmark   June 9, 2006 at 10:42PM
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molie(z6 CT)

Thanks, Remy, for your encouraging words, especially on this Saturday morning when we're getting... yes.... MORE rain.

These are the first roses I've ever grown so I was worried. Whenever I read the rose forum, there are so many techniques and products people seem to use on their roses.... it's discouraging. I liked the fact that yours just keep going and going. You actually do nothing to them at all? Geez! I always considered roses to be finicky, high-maintanance plants.

Molie

    Bookmark   June 10, 2006 at 7:19AM
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remy_gw

Molie,
So sorry about more rain: (
I wish you could come see my roses right now! My sister-in-law is suppsoed to come take some photos. If she does, I will post them. Most people are very shocked to know I do nothing besides pruning them. Once in a blue moon, I'll fertilize or put some compost on them, but that really is it.
I used to spray horicultural oil,baking soda, and insecticidal soap, but I haven't in a few years now. I got the blackspot under control, and I haven't seen much of it since, only in the worst conditions like you are experiencing now. As far as bugs, I think I have a good little ecosystem going in my yard. I have tried to have some things blooming through out season, you know from spring blooming crocus to fall blooming Japanese anemones. It helps attract beneficial insects. I also put up bird feeders.
I don't want to make it seem too simple, because it didn't happen overnight! I have seen all kinds of problems in the past, and I'm always just a little nervous that a catastrophe is waiting to happen, lol.
Also, I only grow a few Hybrid Teas. They are definitely more high maintanance. The rest of my roses are shrubs and antiques. I do some careful planning of my rose purchases. I read many posts about people favorites and looked into those that seemed to stand out. If you like the look of Hybrid Teas, but want less maintance, look into Buck roses. Dr. Buck's most famous rose is 'Carefree Beauty', which is more shrub like, but many of his creations look more like Hybrid Teas. There are a few picture posts on the Antique Rose Forum Gallery. They may be a few pages back, but take a look.
Remy

    Bookmark   June 10, 2006 at 11:35PM
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molie(z6 CT)

Thanks, Remy. I have been thinking more and more about Dr. Buck's newest carefree roses. And I've always wanted some antiques... those are delicious!

Molie

    Bookmark   July 2, 2006 at 10:49PM
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remy_gw

Hi Molie,
My sis-in-law never came to take photos: (
But I did just learn how to post photos in a message today. I have a very bad old camera, but hey better than nothing.
This is of The Fairy blooming right now. It was more up right but a real nasty rain pummelled it. Anyway, even with the bad photo I hope you can imagine how nice it is.
Remy

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 6:47PM
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