Katherine Whiteside: Hi! I am Katherine Whiteside, the author of six garden books and a volunteer for the National Gardening Association. We are here at Oatlands in Leesburg, Virginia and today I am going to give you some tips on how to win the war of the roses.
One of the key things in growing roses is to pick the right rose for your location. There are roses that do well in the South, there are roses that do well out West, but really the rose that will grow anywhere in America is the Rugosa rose.
Rugosa roses are very cold hardy, they are disease resistant, and not many bugs bother them. I mean, really Rugosa roses are like the old work boots of the rose garden. No matter what rose you choose, you need to think a little bit about an easy organic pest spray. The fungus and black spot, I like to tell people to mix a little dish soap, one or two drops, a little bit of baking soda, one or two teaspoons, into some water, shake it, and spray your plants generously with this mixture, making sure that you get the undersides of the leaves as well. Now, as you go through the summer, your roses will fade. Be sure to deadhead these. You are going to move your pruner down to the first set of leaves that has five little leaflets on it, cut there, and soon your rose shrub will look beautiful again. And here is a secret tip for beautiful roses, in winter and early spring, sprinkle Epsom salts around the base of your roses and work it into the soil a little bit, you will have the biggest blooming roses you have ever had.
Remember these four tips and you will be enjoying the best roses you have ever grown.