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The Proverbial Black Spot.....

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Re: The Proverbial Black Spot.....

Post by Ozeboy on 26th November 2010, 12:07

There is a group of 40 + ladies walking the fat off by speed walking around the district. These ladies are keen rose growers and have weed free mulched type rose beds. They are the experts that spend hours on the Internet and read all the garden books. Their gardens are soptless due to spraying, weeding and mulching. I know for my wife keeps telling me they are a lot better at growing roses than I.

Last year I was confronted by this group and thought this might be the best day in my life for a long time. This was not to be as they wanted to know why all the roses growing wild in abandoned gardens and commercial growers paddocks were covered by weeds but were healthier than theirs.

Simon covered one point above re roses not watered will establish a really deep root system which does not compete with shallow rooted grasses.
Grasses keep the ground cooler underneath which promotes better growth in hot weather. This also reduces rising humidity which reduces the need to spray for fungus diseases like Blackspot .
This doesn't look good but tidy up the beds with this in mind.

If you have a no longer used Vacola bottling thermometer laying around do a few experiments by checking the temperature of the soil 6" deep in beds, pots etc. The local nursery will have roses in black pots sitting on black weed mat, no wonder they don't grow when planted out for they will have been cooked.

Ozeboy

Number of posts : 1670
Location : Glenorie, Sydney NSW
Registration date : 2008-12-28

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Re: The Proverbial Black Spot.....

Post by Admin on 26th November 2010, 13:00

The other thing I find is that the groundcovers, whether you use grass or some form of ornamental, also reduce the need to pile on excessive amounts of fertiliser. We need to break this cycle... it's killing our gardens and everything else in it. A good layer of living mulch will actually supply a constant stream of organic nutrients to a garden and when roses have developed strong deep root systems they are more than capable of finding the nutrients in the soil they need. The living mulch encourages worms and other such organisms will effectively 'till' the soil for you by taking it below the surface. For those who care this process is called bioturbation. I scatter alpaca poop over the rose garden where I can and pull back the groundcovers and mulch to lay it down, but I actually don't fertilise my roses at all once they hit the ground. Potted roses are a different kettle of fish but my Grandmother grows the best roses ever by sitting her big pots on the grass to allow critters up into the potting mix and piling a thick layer of horse manure around the tops of the pots. I have never been able to grow roses like her. So, my single biggest piece of advice about your roses is... don't worry so much about them... stop intervening and measuring this and adjusting that... work on a systems approach and everyone will be much happier (except the people who show their blooms... they won't appreciate this line much... sorry...).

Admin

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Re: The Proverbial Black Spot.....

Post by neptune on 26th November 2010, 13:52

I don't mind your last line Simon.....

yes , I show my blooms and do quiet well.......the unfortunate thing is I live on a small suburban block and need to utilise the space appropiately. So, I am always looking for that edge to improve my blooms..... This big!
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neptune

Number of posts : 2411
Location : Western Australia
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Re: The Proverbial Black Spot.....

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