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                       August In The Rose Garden

                                      By Ed Gracia


 The heavy rains in July did more good than harm to my roses. Although finding the right day to spray has been a problem, with some rain almost every day, I still have good control of the black spot. Do not be surprised or worried if you have some black spot in your garden. With fall approaching, it will get drier and your spraying will become more effective.

 August is a good time to consider adding some iron to your roses diet. I am beginning to see some very light green leaves on some of my bushes , which is a good indication that the heavy rains have leached out most of the available iron. If you need to buy some, look for the word “chelated” on the container for quick-acting iron. Ironite is the brand I usually use.

This is also a good time to consider adding some new varieties to your garden in the fall or winter. Plan now for a sunny location where there is good drainage if you plan to add a new bed. Remember, water is always the most important consideration for new bushes and for established bushes. As the storm season is already upon us, be sure your bushes are securely staked. I have noted some wind damage to a few of mine already. I have found that the white PVC 3\4 inch pipe makes sturdy , inexpensive stakes that are permanent.

If you are not using a time release fertilizer, this would be a good time to secure some Osmacote, or other brand, and give each bush 2 or 3 table spoons ,in order to give them some continuous feeding during this heavy rain period with its leaching action. I hope you enjoy sharing your roses with others as much as I do. In the past few months I have supplied roses to help celebrate a 50th wedding anniversary, a 60th wedding anniversary, and 70th wedding anniversary ! Nothing decorates like roses.

 Happy Gardening, Ed Gracia

 P.S. to our Rose Society Members Be sure to bring your best hybrid tea, mini, and floribunda spray to our August meeting for our in-house rose show.


page updated: Saturday, September 14, 2002