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Knock Out Rose renewal pruning question

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by andyslawncare, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. andyslawncare

    andyslawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 812

    Your willing to pull an established KO out with your hands, feel free. They do have sharp spines my friend, and there is not root root here. No thanks.
  2. Landscape Poet

    Landscape Poet LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,638

    You have provided enough information for me to say you should know the problem. You have stated they are sparse and have been since doing a rejuv pruning last year, and azaleas and camellias are in the same bed but thriving. I do it would be stretch to imagine that those roses are not the right plant for that place.

    Although I agree with ed that roses are generally heavy feeders, in your case I do not think fertilizer is the answer until they are moved to a location which allows more favorable growth conditions. More fertilizer could essentially cause more stress.
  3. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Good point Poet, that is just what I wanted to say about location. W/out sunlight the fertilizer isn't very helpful and may indeed cause additional stress...
  4. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,746

    I agree.......late to read the posts.
    Knockout Rose's need full sun to produce the best shape. The twisting trunk seems remnant of the plant growing toward the sunlight.
    I also agree that these plants are not in the correct spot.......and yes fertilizing them even with extra phosphate for blooming will only hurt them.
    If this customer allows, prune them back down to two feet tall and relocate them to a suitable location. After new growth starts according to your weather conditions, then add a low nitrogen fertilizer until blooms ensue.
    I see people buying these plants from all over and planting them in place of other rose's that do not fair so well. The same issue of low light and poor air circulation causes any rose to be subject to leggy stems, powder mildew, blight, rose spot, stem borer and nematodes.

    For me..........the problem has been Mosaic Virus on this species.
  5. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,463

    I have not any problem with fertilizing causing more stress as long as you use the one I recommended. The other thing is.....these things need water the more the better.
  6. LHS Lawns

    LHS Lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 253

    I agree with the water issue. At our home we have two area's of KO's. One area is a stand alone full sun bed. Just them and a few other accent plants but the KO's are the dominant plant.

    I prune them down in the Spring about 18"-20". They are about four years old now and they are spectacular. I think I've fertilized them twice in four years. You couldn't ask for more out of a plant than what these beauties give.

    The other area is part sun and shade in a bed with some Manhatten Euonoymus and they look like yours, very weak and frail. In the Spring and Fall they perk up with the rains but the Manhattens suck up too much moisture in the Summer months.

    I think the combo of part sun and lack of good moisture is holding our KO's back and what I can see from your picture it might be the same problem.

    When ours go dormant we are moving them to an area with full sun and plenty of moisture along with being a few steps from the water hose for easy watering if needed.
  7. gunsnroses

    gunsnroses LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 266


    Rose Rosette Disease will be something to look out for (or just kill all wild roses), I would pull those ugly things out and replace with something else. Roses are over rated in my opinion.
  8. LHS Lawns

    LHS Lawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 253

    We never had roses at our home before, just too much maintenance. When the KO's came out with their low maintenance rep we gave them a try and they have been great.
  9. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    I still ain't sure what all the hassle is about "Too Much Maintenance" is all about... I've had various roses my whole adult life and to tell you the truth ,,, the old floribundas are no more hassle to care for than the knockout rose or anything else...

    If people are thinking about those stupid Tea Roses that get fungaldiseases over winter because they have to be "Protected from winterkill" then I guess that would explain it,,, but those are just manmade freaks of nature and aren't really roses at all... they're expensive annuals...
  10. Mahoney3223

    Mahoney3223 LawnSite Senior Member
    from midwest
    Messages: 995

    I usually prune my ko's in the fall and they come back nice. I don't like them getting huge. I have a property where the ko's are gigantic. They only let us prune a tiny bit off them. They look like trees, lol. I wanted to let mine @ home get bigger but then the animals came and ate them lol.

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