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Beginner on planting roses

gardenman91gardenman91 Posts: 429
Evening everyone, I have a question about planting roses.

I’m due to plant a few container grown roses in a few weeks time. Is it better to improve the soil they’ll be planted in with rotted manure, or mulch afterwards instead? Or improve the soil and mulch afterwards?

Many thanks :smile:


  • You really can't go wrong if you follow the advice on the David Austin website
    To Plant a Garden is to Believe in Tomorrow
  • gardenman91gardenman91 Posts: 429
    Thank you @amancalledgeorge
  • gardenman91gardenman91 Posts: 429
    Just another question for the discussion. Would roses do well on chalky soils? Also it is absolutely necessary to add mycorrhizal fungi to the planting hole? Many thanks :smile:
  • OmoriOmori Posts: 1,673
    No they don’t do well on chalky soil, you need to amend the soil quite a bit. The fungi is beneficial but not necessary, but if you’re gardening in less than ideal soil conditions, I’d add it. You may struggle with chlorosis on chalky soil, if so you need to supplement with sequestered iron. 
  • delskidelski Posts: 274
    An alternative is to add some leaf mould to the planting hole. It will have beneficial fungi.
    The video link is for shrub roses (I haven't watched it) and I wonder if the same would apply for climbling roses.
  • gardenman91gardenman91 Posts: 429
    Could an alternative be growmore? We’re looking at shrub roses to plant. Perhaps there may be a specific rose to suit my soil? 
  • OmoriOmori Posts: 1,673
    This is from Trevor White: “ If you have chalky soil, its important to add a good amount of organic matter such as leaf mold, composted pine needles or well-rotted manure to balance out the PH.” 
  • NollieNollie Posts: 7,512
    There is no substitute for heavy amendment with organic matter with poor soils - mine is heavy, rocky clay but the principles are the same.

    Try to dig over and mix in organic matter over a wide area so you are not creating an enclosed pocket of goodness just in the rose planting hole (effectively acting like a pot sunk into the ground).

    If you use the fungi in the planting hole/on the roots of the rose, don’t add any fertiliser to the hole (fertiliser in close contact will prevent the fungi from working). Plant and water in the rose well, then work in the fertiliser granules in a circle around the surface of the planted rose (not in direct contact with the rose canes)  then I would mulch on top of that with additional well-rotted manure or compost. 
    Mountainous Northern Catalunya, Spain. Hot summers, cold winters.
  • gardenman91gardenman91 Posts: 429
    Thank you all for the advice, much appreciated! Apologies for the late reply.
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