Roses for your senses
Bring your garden to life with the delightful scents and colours of roses.
It has long been said that both colour and fragrance have a profound effect on moods and well-being. While red is believed to create feelings of warmth, energy and ambition, blue shades are cooler and inspire serenity and calm, and white induces clarity and sophistication. Fragrance is a powerful mood-lifter, evoking feelings of nostalgia and happiness; think only of how the scent of perfume on your skin can make you feel, or the smell of a pie baking in the oven.
Transform your garden into a mood enhancing paradise, where all the stresses of your hurried life can be left behind. By realising that life is a garden, and connecting with the earth by enjoying its sights and smells, you will soon reap the benefits. By planting roses, you can adorn your garden with colour and fragrance, and there are many types from which to choose, including climbing roses, shrub roses, ground cover roses or compact types.
Below are some garden favourites. Pick whichever mood-enhancing colour you prefer:
- 'Satchmo'. A floribunda rose with large clusters of semi-double blooms in bright orange-red which deepens in autumn. Ideal for mass planting. It grows to about 1.5m.
- 'Oklahoma'. A strongly fragrant hybrid tea rose with a deep, velvet red colour. It flowers prolifically and grows to about 1.5m
- 'Iceberg'. Everybody's favourite, this scented white floribunda rose is a vigorous grower and flowers prolifically over a long period of time.
- 'Memoire'. Highly fragrant, this hybrid tea bears unblemished white blooms which last well. It grows to about 1m.
- 'Monica'. A scented hybrid tea that produces masses of copper orange blooms with a yellow reverse. It grows to about 1.8m.
- 'South Africa'. This disease resistant, fragrant hybrid tea flowers prolifically, bearing huge clusters of large, golden yellow, double blooms. It grows to about 1m.
If you don't have space or enough sun in your garden, grow your roses in pots and place them in a sunny spot on your patio. Ensure that they have good drainage, water well and otherwise treat them as in the open ground. Try pink 'My Granny' and 'Little Red Hedge'.
Success with roses
Life is a garden, nurture it and you will benefit. Follow these tips for caring for your roses:
- Roses need at least six hours of full sun a day.
- When planting, dig organic material, such as compost, into the soil to the depth of a fork tine. If you have poor, sandy soil, improve it by incorporating plenty of compost every winter; import better soil, with a high clay content, to bind the soil and to improve its water-holding capacity or grow your roses in containers.
- Roses need a good watering at least once a week, or more frequently when it is very hot and dry. Mulch well to conserve soil moisture.
- Avoid planting roses near trees – their roots may invade the rose bushes and use up the fertiliser provided for the roses.
- Fertilise regularly during the growing season with a specialised rose fertiliser.
- Support your roses with a stake in windy weather.
- Where plants are exposed to salt-laden sea air, spray plants down regularly with water.
- Prune in winter.
Secrets to pest control
Roses need spraying once every two weeks. By alternating the following two 'cocktails' recommended by rose expert, Ludwig Taschner, you will be able to control most pests and diseases:
The products in this cocktail are environmental friendly and control powdery mildew, black spot, aphids, bollworm, stem borer, thrips and beetles. Mix 50ml Ludwig's Insect Spray, 20ml Coppercount and 10ml of Ludwig's Spray in 10 litres water.
For powdery mildew, black spot, downy mildew, aphids, bollworm, beetles, thrips and stem borer. Mix 10ml Funginex, 20g DithaneWG, 5ml G49 spreader and 10ml Ripcord in 10 litres of water.
The spray cocktail should not be pre-mixed because once the chemicals are mixed with water, their stability changes and they will not be active after a few hours.