Planting roses is simple -- even for the novice
Weymouth, Mass. — Planting a rose may take a little work, but its simple - very simple - according to those who add to their collections each year. A little common sense is necessary, true, but there is no need for great gardening skills or even experience.
All you have to follow are five steps, which are:
* In a deeply spaded, well-drained, sunny area, dig each hole 15 to 18 inches wide and equally deep. Add a quart of peat moss and-or compost to some of the removed soil, and mix well. Take this mixture and form a blunt cone in the bottom of the hole.
* Prune all the rose canes back to about 12 inches, and remove any broken or injured roots. Position the rose on the cone so that in mild climates (where the temperature seldom dips below freezing) the bud union, or swelling at the base of the rose, will be just above the soil surface when the hole is again filled in.
In colder areas, allow the bud union to sit just below the soil surface. Spread the roots evenly around the cone.
* Add soil to the hole, working it firmly around the roots to eliminate any air pockets. Add more soil until the hole is three-quarters filled. Use a foot to firm down the soil, being careful not to injure any of the roots.
* Now fill the hole with water and allow it to soak in. Refill, and let the water soak away again. At this stage add the remaining soil and firm it down with a foot. Now do some more pruning, cutting the canes back to 8 inches, making each cut one-quarter inch above an outward-facing bud.
* Finally, mound more soil up around the canes to within an inch or so of the top. This will protect the canes from any of the drying winds that can be commonplace in the springtime.
Within a week to 10 days, by which time the roots will have established themselves, slowly begin removing the soil, say an inch or two a day. Be careful that you do not break off any new shoots that might have begun growing. Loosen the plant tag so that it does not constrict the growing cane.
Once vigorous growth has begun, apply plant food according to the manufacturer's directions.
Meanwhile, you might consider adding two new 1983 award winners to your rose collection. They are Sun Flare, the first clear-yellow floribunda to receive an All America Rose Selections award in 25 years; and Sweet Surrender, a pink hybrid tea with intensely fragrant blooms.
William Warriner, with 8 previous award winners to his credit, developed Sun Flare at his Tustin, Calif., breeding grounds; Sweet Surrender is the sixth award winner for breeder Olie Weeks of Ontario, Calif.
A new brochure, ''Roses Are for You,'' dealing with the planting and care of roses, is available free by sending a stamped, self-addressed envelope to the gardening editor, The Christian Science Monitor, 1 Norway Street, Boston, Mass. 02115. Mark the envelope with the word ''roses.''