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Feeding the roses

June is for Roses, and now that the pruning is done I am looking at the spring feeding.  I had 28 antique or old fashion roses. So far I think I may have lost 5 or 6 roses over the winter. The photo is of New Dawn 2013, it is an old fashion climbing rose. I pruned off about 60% of the old wood.  There is just a little bit of new green leaves starting here and there which is a good sign. I was afraid New Dawn was dead.  It is slow showing signs of life. Maybe after I feed it, I will see more leaves.  

I am trying new fertilizer again this spring. I just bought a 50lb bag of alfalfa pellets sold as horse feed at Agway. I will also use bone meal, fish emulsion, and earth worm castings and compost. I still need to buy some epison salts.

Here is a basic rule that I found on one of the rose sites I looked at tonight.

This article link:                                                  explains how to give your roses the food they need to be healthy, productive plants. But, for those of you who want a quick answer, here's the bare-bones guide to fertilizing:

  1. Give each rose 2 cups of a well-balanced, natural-based or organic granular fertilizer in the spring. Sprinkle onto the soil surface around the base of the plant. Additional amendments that can be fed include: 1/4 cup of epsom salts, 2 cups of alfalfa, 1/2 cup of rock phosphate or bone meal, and a shovelfull of compost.

  2. Optional summer feeding: One month after the first feeding, give each rose a dose (about one gallon of solution per rose) of an organic liquid fertilizer, such as fish emulsion. Apply this each month during the summer up until 6 weeks before the first frost.

  3. Don't use Miracle Grow type liquid chemical fertilizers on Rugosa roses. It burns them right up.

Paula McComb of Sweet Pea Flowers

Paula fiest puts in ferns and then some airy stems then tall flowers,  Delphinium then Larkspur, open roses( force open with fingers, Esperanto rose ,  wire the roses, take off birth petals and remove the center. Continue adding small filler flowers and finish with a Gerber Daisy.
 very beautiful.   We must vist Sweet Pea Flowers in rural Stoneboro.