Knockout Rose problem!!!
I'm hoping I can get some help here. Got a call from a customer of mine where I planted 5, 5 gallon knockouts in May 2013. Just got a call over the weekend asking for my help. Customer stated all of the roses were knocked over and were uprooted. He was telling me he thought it was the snow, but I thought no way would that have happened. I planted them in May and I know I did it properly.
I got to thinking and when I got there it was just as I suspected, vole damage. 3 telltale signs were there. 2 small holes a little bigger than a quarter, very loose and bumpy mulch, and all of the roots were chewed. In addition, the turf near the bed had little bumps and his neighbor whose yard I do has also had shrub damage.
Here is where I'm wanting some opinions. I said I MIGHT be able to save them. I am planning on pruning them down to about 18". I am going to replant them and mix up some rooting hormone and water on the roots. I am going to work in, and sprinkle an organic mole/vole deterrent all in the bed. I have had success with this product in my own yard. Basically a mix of garlic, cinnamon, pepper, etc. Irritates their skin and they leave the area. About 30-45 days I was going to apply a rose fertilizer at the base of all the roses. too.
I am including pics. Do you think these are goners already? Or, with my plan outlined above, do they have a shot? Would you try saving them first or just tell the customer he needs 5 new 5 gallon roses, which would be a lot more than my attempt to save them.
Pic #1 is a partial view of the bed. You can see how they are totally leaning over.
Pic #2 is a close up of what the roses roots look like. You can see its right at the crown and just under where the canes come out of the ground when planted.
Pics #3 is one of the holes I found in the area indicative of voles.
Pick #4 is another closeup of the roots.