You may not think of late summer and fall as a time for rose gardening. Sometimes, however, roses will actually establish better when planted in fall than when planted in late winter through early spring.
Meanwhile, summer planting is also not ideal because of the high heat during this season. In San Diego, for instance, the temperature in August can hit 78°F. That's why the best time to plant roses in Southern California is either in spring or fall.
The answer is: yes! Roses are particularly well suited to fall planting. They tend to benefit immensely, and you can pay a quarter of the price for plants that you might be charged during the spring.
If you've ever tried to dig a hole in a frozen garden, you'll already know why spring is the best time to plant roses, in most areas of the northern hemisphere. While you can plant roses in the fall, well before the first frost (6 weeks), you will see little growth and blooming until the following spring.
Additionally, roses planted in April and May are doomed to face the upcoming summer heat sooner than later. Roses planted in February and March are able to establish roots while the weather is mild and are able to deal with the heat better once it arrives.
If you must transplant in the heat of summer, do it in the cool of morning or evening, and on a cloudy day. Water, water, and more water will help a growing rose bush compensate for the loss of roots when you transplant. And in the heat of summer when the soil dries out quickly, even more water.
Aside from times of extreme weather, roses can be planted at any time during the year. The extreme weather conditions that we advise against planting in are when the ground is frozen, water-logged or during a drought.
When Do Roses Bloom? Roses start blooming in late May and continue to do so through early fall. They are often considered to be at their best in June, which is why roses are considered June's birth flower.
First, dig a small hole where you want to put your new rose bed. Then, fill it with water and see how long it takes to drain. If it takes more than an hour you'll want to improve your drainage by digging deeper planting holes and adding some coarse sand to allow for faster drainage.
Tip. Mid- to late-August is often an excellent time to plant fall flowers, as long as the weather isn't still so hot that the plants will suffer heat stress. But don't wait too late to plant, or you'll have a very short window to enjoy your flowers. Check the growing requirements for each plant.
More roses are planted in spring and this may be slightly safer but there are several advantages in fall planting. Soil preparation is easier in autumn. At that time the earth is more likely to be friable, not frozen or waterlogged as it may be in early spring.
Fall is the second best time, toward the end of October or in November, if the soil is still reasonably warm. The plant will do better the longer it has to reestablish itself before winter cold arrives. You can transplant roses in mid-season, say June or July, but it's risky.
Vegetables that can be planted in August include leafy greens such as lettuce, spinach, collards, kale and mustard. Radishes, turnips, beets and carrots can all be started from seeds in August.
Dahlias are an obvious choice when it comes to what to plant in August, as they will flower right up to the first frosts and several varieties bring added interest with bronze foliage. You can also rely on long-blooming salvias, astilbes, sunny rudbeckias and gaillardias, asters, sedums and heleniums.
You stop fertilizing roses in mid-August to late September depending on your climate zone. Make sure to stop feeding 2 months before the first freeze. Roses use a lot of energy flowering all season long so they need a rest period. You never want to fertilize roses in the winter because this is their time of dormancy.
Generally, roses are easy care plants and once established, can survive through some of the toughest conditions. However, young or newly planted roses are delicate, and need regular watering and attention to become established and hardy. In the right conditions, roses will generally take 2 years to become established.
Roses like morning sun whenever possible. Morning sun burns the dew off the roses and makes them less likely to suffer from mildew and other diseases. However, afternoon sun tends to be stronger than morning sun so, if you are only able to provide the rose with a half day of sun, choose the afternoon over the morning.
Roses prefer a full day of sun. Give roses at least six to eight hours of direct sun a day. Morning sun is especially important because it dries the leaves, which helps prevent disease. The area should have good air circulation.
After several days of below freezing temperatures, create a mound of soil, compost, shredded leaves or evergreens 8 to 10 inches deep over the base of the plant. Mounding keeps the rose uniformly cold, which reduces the chance of damage caused by cycles of freeze and thaw.
Avoid pruning roses in the fall. Because pruning spurs more growth, stop deadheading or cutting blooms for bouquets a few weeks before your area's first frost date. As the weather gets colder, your roses will begin to go dormant, moving their energy reserves into their roots to help them survive the winter.
Plan to give your roses a good pruning at least once a year. For once-blooming rose varieties, wait until early summer to prune them just after they've bloomed.
They should also be planted in well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter. In especially hot climates, roses do best when they are protected from the hot afternoon sun. In cold climates, planting a rose bush next to a south- or west-facing fence or wall can help minimize winter freeze damage.
By adding coffee grounds to your roses, you create a barrier that will keep pests away and allow your rose bushes to thrive. So if you're wondering whether coffee grounds are good for roses, the answer is a resounding yes! Coffee grounds are an inexpensive and readily available organic fertilizer for your roses.