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Neglected, woody roses

jamesharcourtjamesharcourt West SussexPosts: 426
Hi I’d like some advice on the roses below please.  I’ve numbered them but I’d like to bring them more into a bushy/compact form if possible.  One of them is bigger and closer to what I wanted.  What can I do either now or in Spring?

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  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Bath, SomersetPosts: 5,277
    1 and 2 look really old and the spotted stems would indicate that they have a strong blackspot disease.  If they are more than ten years old, I would be inclined to get rid of them and buy yourself some new ones. Rose no. 3 looks in better condition but could probably do with thinning out (cut out the oldest thickest stems right to the ground if possible, then prune the rest by half. I would wait until January when they are thoroughly dormant to do this, on a dry day but not frosty. 
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 20,415
    edited November 2019
    Roses can last decades if they are treated well.   These clearly haven't been well tended but it's worth trying to save them if you're prepared to give them a whole year to respond.  I would leave them as they are for now and let winter do it's worst so any frost damage happens to bits you will be cutting off.

    For now, give each one a generous handful of bonemeal which will feed the roots over winter.  In spring - mid to late March edepending on where you are and how cold it is - follow the 3D rules of pruning and cut out any Dead, Diseased or Damaged wood back to their base.  Any stems left need cutting back to an outward facing bud.

    Then, apply a good dollop of specialist slow release fertilier for roses or tomatoes and fork it in gently around the roots then give each one a thick mulch of well-rotted manure.   Then corss your fingers and hope they grow back healthy new stems.

    The RHS offers this advice on pruning roses https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=178
     
    If you do decide just to dig them out and replace them you need either to choose other plants or else dig out a big hole and replace all the soil or your new rose will likely weaken and die from replant disease - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=572   

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • May I just make a brief comment on what Obelixx calls "replant disease". There is actually no such thing - it's a general term for any one of a dozen or more different conditions. But one of the golden rules of gardening I was taught as a kid was: never plant the same species in the same place as one you have dug out. The reason is that although old plants develop resisitance to disease, young ones may not have it. In other words, anything except roses.
  • jamesharcourtjamesharcourt West SussexPosts: 426
    Thanks @Obelixx ... as you can see from pictures 1 and 2, there are some other plants growing nearby which look like Heuchera and another thing right in the rose which produces blue flowers, I don’t know if these are weeds.  Would these be causing the rose problems do you think?  One is literally growing in the same spot.
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 20,415
    The broad leaved plant, bottom left, top picture looks like creeping buttercup to me so a weed.  The other looks like linum - perennial flax which does well in poor soils and, logically, that indicates that your roses are probably hungry.   

    If you read the link I gave you on replant the disease the RHS - which has all sorts of scientists, botanists and gardening experts - says replant disease is a problem with roses.   Worth avoiding if you do plant new ones. 
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • jamesharcourtjamesharcourt West SussexPosts: 426
    Obelixx said:
    The broad leaved plant, bottom left, top picture looks like creeping buttercup to me so a weed.  The other looks like linum - perennial flax which does well in poor soils and, logically, that indicates that your roses are probably hungry.   

    If you read the link I gave you on replant the disease the RHS - which has all sorts of scientists, botanists and gardening experts - says replant disease is a problem with roses.   Worth avoiding if you do plant new ones. 
    I’m going to leave rose #3 (the tall one) but get rid of the ugly little ones I think - and replace with lavender angustifolia rosea.  If I can dig them out cleanly I might try putting in a large pot of some kind and seeing if I can nurse them back to something there.
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 20,415
    Do it now then and treat them as bare root roses.   Dig up as much root as possible, trim the ends cleanly with sharp secateurs.  Sprinkle on some microrhizal fungae.  Pot in John Innes no 3 type compost with the graft union an inch or two below soil level.  Cut back stems to a low bud then water well and allow to drain.   Keep in a sheltered spot and cross your fingers.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • jamesharcourtjamesharcourt West SussexPosts: 426
    Obelixx said:
    Do it now then and treat them as bare root roses.   Dig up as much root as possible, trim the ends cleanly with sharp secateurs.  Sprinkle on some microrhizal fungae.  Pot in John Innes no 3 type compost with the graft union an inch or two below soil level.  Cut back stems to a low bud then water well and allow to drain.   Keep in a sheltered spot and cross your fingers.
    Thanks I’ll try.  I was plannng to use some homegrown compost with a bit of sand and perlite in there.  
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 20,415
    Homegrown compost is fine if you produce it in large quantities in a heap that heats up enough to kill pathogens and weed seeds.  In my experience, perlite always floats to the top.   Your roses are already weak and compromised so I would reconsider and go for some commercial compost.  Save your home made compost for mulching and improving your sol.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • jamesharcourtjamesharcourt West SussexPosts: 426
    Obelixx said:
    Homegrown compost is fine if you produce it in large quantities in a heap that heats up enough to kill pathogens and weed seeds.  In my experience, perlite always floats to the top.   Your roses are already weak and compromised so I would reconsider and go for some commercial compost.  Save your home made compost for mulching and improving your sol.
    I do hot compost in two large bins throughout the growing season.  One is nearly used up now and the other is only partially done as the heap is new.  I’m trying to save money really.  I’ve got some bags of Wickes top soil which is a sand/clay loam but that isn’t very nutrient rich.
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