How to winter my babies??

BellaLin(5)July 31, 2011

This is my first post here & I have my first crop of rose seedlings this summer. I have stumbled along, learning as I go. During stratification they sprouted more quickly than I expected, so I will be going into fall with 3 month old babies. I am getting my first blooms now. I am in Zone 5, and I am trying to figure out what to do with my babies this winter. I do not feel that they are mature enough to survive outside. I have an unheated garage, and I have a basement that is cool but not cold. Would either of these work? If they go dormant, and I try wintering in the garage, what are the water/light requirements? I don't really have a good place to allow them to grow through the winter. I was expecting a much lower germination and survival rate, so I overplanted and have a LOT of seedlings. Thanks for any help!!

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mad_gallica(zone 5 - eastern New York)

If they are starting to bloom, then genetically they are relatively tender repeat bloomers. Those I'd keep in the basement under lights. The lights don't have to be anything fancy, regular fluorescent shop lights work fine. I always had trouble with small roses in the garage. I think it was because the water requirements of dormant roses can be erratic, and the small pots didn't hold much of a reserve.

    Bookmark   August 2, 2011 at 10:48AM
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seil zone 6b MI

Eewww, not sure about that inside stuff. Unless you can keep the humidity way up in your basement (and I don't think you really want a damp basement) they won't like it and will probably die. And even grow lites won't be enough "sunshine" for them. I keep all my seedlings outside over the winter in one of those small portable greenhouses. I got mine at a local hardware store but I know that Spray N Grow sells one on line. Make sure they are well watered going in and water them once a month through the winter. Even if they look frozen solid! In the spring watch the temps outside and if it gets up pretty warm go out and open the door for ventilation so they don't cook. I actually hang a small thermometer inside mine so I can check how hot or cold it is inside. Then zip it up at night if it's still going down below freezing. You can take the cover off when the temps at night are consistently above freezing.

If all that's more than you want to do the only other thing I can suggest is to put them in your UNheated garage if you have one. But they'll still need to be watered once a month!

    Bookmark   August 4, 2011 at 10:20PM
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Thanks for the idea and the pic. That is something I might try!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2011 at 2:21AM
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