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Problem with my David Austin roses

gavpregavpre Posts: 33
Ive got 4 David Austin roses and my mustead wood has flopped. They were all planted just a year ago. It seems the blooms are too heavy for the shrub and has dragged most of the stems to the ground and it looks a mess. What can I do to improve the look of it? 



  • MarlorenaMarlorena East AngliaPosts: 6,935
    This is nothing to worry about, your rose is young, it will get stronger with time. You have some nice upright canes with buds I can see, but this rose will droop its blooms in the early years.  It is a rose that demands a lot of moisture too, and in the first year or two, it can never have enough of it...  later on it becomes more self sufficient.. please be patient with this rose...  cut the blooms for the house if you don't like the look of it currently... 

    I took this  photo yesterday, my rose is in its 3rd season..

  • MarlorenaMarlorena East AngliaPosts: 6,935
    I should add, you have some nice roses there, a lovely border... I notice some others have flopped to the ground too,... typical of young Austins…  I use green metal canes which I push into the ground near some of my roses, and tie the canes to these for support...   or you can just cut off those lower canes on the ground and put the blooms in a vase, leaving the stronger taller canes in the garden..

    ..these are the supports I use for young roses to grow up on.. they will soon grow and cover these stakes.. I use green string to tie them in..

  • NollieNollie Girona, Catalunya, Northen Spain.Posts: 6,320
    This is what mine looks like this morning, after heavy rain, admittedly:

    Mine is of a similar age and habit, with spindly canes and a few big ones shooting up. They do get stronger after a couple of years - Marlorena says in year three we will see a big difference. I use a few small pea sticks to prop them up when necessary, wait til the big canes have flowered then cut them back a bit to encourage a bushier, more rounded shape. If a cane is really pathetic I sometimes cut it right back. Deadhead the ones dropping their petals on the Munstead and others next to them. It’s all normal.
  • NollieNollie Girona, Catalunya, Northen Spain.Posts: 6,320
    Sorry Marlorena, our posts crossed, I should leave you to dispense your superior wisdom!
  • MarlorenaMarlorena East AngliaPosts: 6,935
    Oh not at all Nollie, I think we more or less said the same thing...  we've had a lot of rain too... it happens...  once we get a drier spell it will all perk up again...

    Everyone who grows roses seems to have 'Munstead Wood'... 
  • Chrissy the gardenerChrissy the gardener Posts: 1,071
    edited May 2018
    Just a thought, I notice your canes don’t have any cane caps on to protect your eyes it’s all to easy to bend over your plants and not see the top of the cane.Its good practice to put something over the top of the cane I put very small plant pots over mine and I write the name of the plant on the outside of the pot so doubley useful.
    You can use anything some gardeners even use empty snail shells.
  • MarlorenaMarlorena East AngliaPosts: 6,935
    Very good advice Chrissy although I don't need them personally for my purposes but yes, others might... especially if using thin bamboo canes..
  • gavpregavpre Posts: 33
    edited June 2018
    I've just got in from trying to support the flopped canes and only have scratches on my arms to show for my attempt.

    The canes were all very weak, less than 5mm thick so I took drastic action and cut the flopped canes to the ground. I have only 1 strong upright cane left:(

    Have I been brave or stupid?

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 81,319
    edited June 2018
    R. Munstead Wood is described by David Austin as a shrub rose with spreading growth
     occupying a space of more than 1m x 1m .... you have a lovely rose but it's in the wrong place in that narrow border.    I wouldn't have pruned the rose ... I'd have widened the border ... considerably .... take a look here

    My English shrub roses  flopped for the first two or three years, but now are forming lovely mounds with lots of blooms.  They have quite a different growth habit to the more upright Hybrid Tea roses that many people are used to. 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • gavpregavpre Posts: 33
    Thanks, widening the border is definitely on my to do list. I think its only 50 cm wide so will take another foot or so from the grass at some point.
    Most the canes I cut out were only a 1-2mm thick and struggled to support itself before the blooms came.

    Hopefully it will recover because I hate roses that only have a cane or 2.
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