Wednesday, November 28th, 2007...9:28 am
Winter Care of Knock-Out Roses
TheGardenLady received this question from Julia.
How do I prepare my KNOCK-OUT Roses for winter?
KNOCK-OUT Roses were bred to be almost maintenance free. So, if you live in zone 5 or a warmer climate, winter maintenance is minimal.
The KNOCK-OUT rose site says that “Knock-Out Roses were bred with greater cold weather tolerance to relieve the northern gardener of the need to apply and remove winter protection materials and the necessity to replace winter killed plants when protection failed.”
That being said, mulch the roses with leaves or hard wood AFTER the first hard frost – you want the ground to be frozen solid.* If you want, you can burlap the rose plant. Burlaping will also prevent the deer from eating the rose bushes. If the roses are in pots, the pots should either be buried in the ground or brought into the garage. The pot does not give adequate protection to the roots during the cold, freezing winter.
TheGardenLady has mulched her KNOCK-OUT roses but never burlaped them and they were glorious with their profusion of flowers all summer long.
A great book to read on care of roses is: A Year of Roses by Stephen Scanniello. This book tells you everything you want to know about raising roses and tells you what to do to care for roses each month of the year.
*(If you mulch too early, the ground will warm up and the plant will be fooled into thinking it is spring. With warm ground the rose bush might start growing. You want the rose to sleep during the winter. Also, DO NOT fertilize plants in the winter for the same