Past Articles Library | Growing and Caring for a Miniature Rose
Miniature roses are a favorite plant to give as a gift in the spring. While the plant is beautiful, it can be challenging to grow indoors. Yes, it can be done but growing miniature roses inside can be more of a headache than a blessing.
If you were lucky enough to receive a miniature rose as a gift, do not throw it out after it finishes blooming. There is another choice and that is to plant it in your garden space or container.
To begin this planting process should begin in the early spring. Keeping your plant inside until spring is a great way of allowing the roots to develop before moving out into the big world. Once the soil has started to warm, you can begin the planting process.
The first step of this process is the hole. A miniature rose should be planted no deeper than the container that the rose came in. Having said that fact you will need to dig the hole so that it is twice as deep as the container. The width of the hole needs to be two to three times the width of the original container.
When digging this hole though, do not just throw the soil on the ground. Instead, put it in a bucket. The reason for this is the fact that you will have to enhance the soil with two to four inches of well seasoned compost and/or manure. What is well seasoned compost and/or manure? It is a substance that has been allowed to set for at least a year to break down. Once you have your soil enhancer, the next step is to mix it into the removed soil from the hole. Mix in until it is completely mixed.
Now that your hole has been dug and the soil has been prepared, the next step is to place your potted miniature rose in the hole. Why would you want to do that? Well, you are testing the hole to make sure it is twice the depth and three times the width of the container. Once the hole is the correct size, the next step is to add some soil into the hole so that the container comes up to the level of the ground. After that is done, it is time to remove the plant from its container.
Removing the plant from its container may seem like an easy process, it can be a challenge sometimes. There are a couple of approaches that one can follow. The first one is to just slit the pot and remove the plant. This will work but if you want to keep the container, this is not the approach you want to use. If you want to keep the pot, simply turn the container upside down and gently squeeze the sides of the pot. Then, tap on the bottom of the container. Once that is done, the miniature rose should fall out of the container. If it does not come out, repeat this process but if this does not work after a few tries simply cut the container.
Now that the rose is out of its container, the next step is to loosen the roots. This process is called “teasing the roots.” What this process entails is loosening up the roots so that they are no longer growing in a circle. After that is done, place the plant in the hole and fill in with soil. When filling in the hole, you want to make sure that you fill it up so that the soil level in the hole is the same as the ground around the hole. Next, water the plant in. The reason for this is twofold. The first reason is the fact that the water will push out any air bubbles left in the soil. Once these air bubbles are gone, you may find that the soil level has gone down and will need to be filled back up. The second reason is that water hydrates the plant.
The next step in this process is to fertilize the plant but before you do you really need to know when to do this properly. Miniature roses grown indoors do have a dormant period. This occurs in the late Fall through the winter months. The sign of the dormancy is the dropping of the leaves and/or flowers. You may even find that you are left with just stems but do not worry, this is natural and what you really want. You want your miniature rose to take a rest before spring.
In the spring, you will begin to see leaf buds appear. Once this happens, you can begin a fertilizer program but do not use any fertilizer sitting around the garden shed. To get the best blooms possible, you will need a fertilizer that is high in phosphorus. A good example would be a formulation of 5-10-5. Feed your miniature roses once a month with this fertilizer formulation from the spring to late summer.
The last task that one will need to do to their miniature rose is pruning. During the growing season, you will need to remove spent blooms. The easiest way to do this on a miniature rose is to just cut it below the spent bloom. Once that is done, pick up any petals that may have fallen on the ground. While the petals are organic, the presence of the petals can lead to a fungal, bacterial and/or pest problem. The last type of pruning you will need to do during the growing season is optional. What is this pruning? Well, if your miniature rose is blooming in a spray, remove the center bud. This step will allow the plant to send more energy to the remaining buds, which will mean the buds left will produce larger roses.
The last type of pruning that needs to be done is in the winter. You will need to cut the miniature rose bush down by half its height. You will also need to remove any diseased canes and those that are crossing over each other.
While miniature roses are small, they do suffer from the same issues that standard roses do. This includes fungal, bacterial, and pest problems. The treatment for these problems is the same as for other rose varieties.
As you can see, raising miniature roses can be a test whether you raise them inside or out. But the rewards that they will give you are immense especially when they reward you with beautiful blooms.