Winterizing roses is an essential maintenance practice, undertaken to ensure healthy and constant growth of the plant. Though wild roses are programmed to endure adverse climatic conditions, hybrid tea roses need protection. They are vulnerable to extreme cold, as deep freezing breaks their cell walls and dries out their canes. This leads to withering and overnight they can turn black. So, to maintain the glory of your roses, you must protect them from the damage caused by the winter frost.
There are a number of things that should be done to reduce the harm, which might otherwise be caused to your rose bushes. The initial thing to do is to choose a winter hardy rose species for plantation. Next, ensure that your roses are healthy without any stress. Irrigate them properly in late autumn and discontinue nitrogen application in late summer or early autumn, for a sturdy growth. For some more effective tips for winterizing rose bushes, read on.
Preparing Roses for Winter
- Pruning is an effective way of winterizing roses. Just after the first frost in your area,prune your rose bushes to eliminate any dead, weak or diseased shoots. Trim the longer ones by one-half and shorter ones by one-third.
- Make sure you spray the bushes with an antidesiccant, a short while after pruning. This is because the antidesiccant blocks in moisture, protecting the plant from the damage caused by freezing, thawing or refreezing in winters.
- Just before you feel the ground is about to freeze, gather some dirt from your neighboring areas and pile it up at the base of the rose plants. This will provide the ground with desired heat and protect it from freezing.
- Make sure you prepare heaps of lean sandy soil at the base of the bushes, creating a mound. After this, tie the shoots together.
- In case you are residing in extremely cold regions, you can add mulch to protect your plats. Mulch comprises of objects like salt hay, bark chips, pine needles, leaves, etc, which act as extra protection, thereby minimizing the possible damage caused by sudden temperature swings.
- One of the most effective ways of protecting the rose plant from winter frost is by covering the bush with a protective cylinder. Use straw, leaves or similar material to insulate the bush inside the cone. For air circulation, puncture numerous, one inch holes around the top of the cone.