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Old 02-24-2014, 08:09 AM
ron mexico75's Avatar
ron mexico75 ron mexico75 is online now
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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.
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Old 02-24-2014, 10:18 AM
rlitman rlitman is offline
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I don't know if I'd bother with the rootone.

If there are plenty of roots left, and the crown isn't damaged, perhaps they'll survive. Knockout roses are pretty hard to kill. At least you're in the right time of the year to be doing this kind of work. Roses do well from drastic cutting back in the dormant season.

With such a damaged root system, watering will have to be carefully scheduled if you want them to live. Sprinker spray too much and you risk black spot (although Knockout is relatively fungus resistant), or crown rot. Roses REALLY like drip irrigation if that's an option.

But here's my thinking. IF the roses live, it will take a year for them to grow back to the 5 gallon size they were before. Will the customer be ok with waiting for that? And what if one or two die? Will they be ok with having roses of different sizes for a few years after you replace a couple and wait for them to grow in?

Last edited by rlitman; 02-24-2014 at 10:27 AM.
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Old 02-24-2014, 10:29 AM
rlitman rlitman is offline
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So is your plan crazy? No, but you've got more of a "business" decision than a horticultural one to make.
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Old 02-24-2014, 10:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlitman View Post
So is your plan crazy? No, but you've got more of a "business" decision than a horticultural one to make.
Well I take your post as; I might be able to save the roses. BUT, the business mans decision would be to claim them as a loss and charge for planting new ones which would be more profit? Or, another business decision would be to save time and hassle and just plant new ones rather than having to make a return trip if my saving plan doesn't pan out as well as follow up visits to see how they are progressing?
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Old 02-24-2014, 10:38 AM
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ron mexico75 ron mexico75 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlitman View Post
I don't know if I'd bother with the rootone.

If there are plenty of roots left, and the crown isn't damaged, perhaps they'll survive. Knockout roses are pretty hard to kill. At least you're in the right time of the year to be doing this kind of work. Roses do well from drastic cutting back in the dormant season.

With such a damaged root system, watering will have to be carefully scheduled if you want them to live. Sprinker spray too much and you risk black spot (although Knockout is relatively fungus resistant), or crown rot. Roses REALLY like drip irrigation if that's an option.

But here's my thinking. IF the roses live, it will take a year for them to grow back to the 5 gallon size they were before. Will the customer be ok with waiting for that? And what if one or two die? Will they be ok with having roses of different sizes for a few years after you replace a couple and wait for them to grow in?
That's a much better thought out response than the first one I quoted.....thanks man I appreciate it. Makes more sense with what you wrote the second time. I agree with that a lot more. I didn't even think about if some make it and some don't the different sizes. I also wasn't considering if that would bother the client if it took another year to get back to a decent size. Some good things to think about for sure! Thanks.
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Old 02-24-2014, 11:43 AM
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ron mexico75 ron mexico75 is online now
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Anybody else have thoughts about this?
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Old 02-24-2014, 07:07 PM
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Originally Posted by ron mexico75 View Post
Anybody else have thoughts about this?

Come on! Do we just have grass cutters on the site? No one else knows anything about shrubs? Curious as to what others think.
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Old 02-24-2014, 07:21 PM
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Landrus2 Landrus2 is offline
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Roses tend to be subject to a variety of fungal diseases. A major part of rose care is managing the environment around them to reduce damp conditions that encourage the colonization of harmful fungi. Root rot is caused by fungal growth in the soil; the pathogens are wide-ranging and favored by wet conditions. They can spread to other plants and might be present in the rose when you buy it or originate elsewhere in the garden.
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:05 PM
turfmd101 turfmd101 is offline
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It seems you would like to save them. Your best chance to reinstate root development would be to layer the bottom of the holes with 2" of milorginite. Then place the roses in. Then use a fill of milorginite/potting soil. A 50/50 mix. Then top off with 1/2 inch of milorginite. Be sure not to bury the crown. Make sure the crown can breath. Then use drip irrigation and adhere to strict proper watering amounts. Probably an inch per week. Overhead irrigation will cause leafspot and weaken recovery. I'm not a rose expert. But this is the best I got. Good luck. They Knockout roses are hardy
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:06 PM
turfmd101 turfmd101 is offline
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It seems you would like to save them. Your best chance to reinstate root development would be to layer the bottom of the holes with 2" of milorginite. Then place the roses in. Then use a fill of milorginite/potting soil. A 50/50 mix. Then top off with 1/2 inch of milorginite. Be sure not to bury the crown. Make sure the crown can breath. Then use drip irrigation and adhere to strict proper watering amounts. Probably an inch per week. Overhead irrigation will cause leafspot and weaken recovery. I'm not a rose expert. But this is the best I got. Knockout roses are hardy. Good luck.
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