November – begin to check for winter water needs by checking the soil moisture 2 – 4 inches deep. Deep water when needed, as temperatures allow (40 degrees or warmer). High winds and heavy snow can damage some tall, as well as young roses. Tie up or stake tall Hybrid Teams and other susceptible roses to minimize cane as well as root damage. Shorten canes only if necessary – once the plant is dormant. Tie climbers to trellis, cover with burlap if desired. Remove leaves, trash and debris from rose beds to minimize over wintering disease sports and insect pest eggs. When the ground freezes, and rose growth has clearly ceased, apply winter protection where necessary.
December – now that most outdoor gardening action has slowed to a virtual stop, it is time to sharpen and oil pruning tools, clean spray equipment and store it in a dry place for the winter. Continue to check soil moisture levels outside and water as needed when temperatures will stay above 45 degrees for several hours during the day. Roots suffer more in dry soil than in wet soil. Water slowly so that it soaks 8– 12 inches into the soil. When the roses go dormant (after several nights below 23 degrees), apply winter protection such as mulch or pine needles to protect against drying winter winds and multiple freeze/thaw cycles. Apply loosely so water can get down to the roots.
Check out Dave Ingram’s “Getting Started with Roses Volume VIII Winter” for additional timely tips. This information and more growing and care information can be found under the Growing Roses drop down menu on each page of the website.
Growing Roses in Colorado (GRIC) has a wealth of information on care of roses, find the book at area garden centers, gift stores or order from this website.
Consulting Rosarians (CRs) are available to assist you with your questions throughout the year. Contact them by typing in your question on our Contact Page. A list of CRs is on the DRS website – Denver Rose Society.
Please consider joining our society, we’d love to meet you. You may join on line or send in a paper copy. Paper renewal for existing members or new members who prefer to mail in the form – Membership Mail In Form. Memberships run one year from the joining date.
To meet other friendly rose devotees, please join us for our next monthly meeting – click on the calendar link for the full schedule including classes taught in the community by rose experts. Visitors and guests are always welcome at monthly meetings (no charge)!