Rosa is a genus in the Rosaceae family containing over three hundred species and thousands and thousands of cultivars. The plants, as well as fruits belonging to these plants, are referred to as roses. Roses are nearly always spectacular and exhibit aesthetic, magnificent, vibrant chic colors. The genus Rosa is adored for the refreshing fragrance of its flowers. Speaking of habits, they can be climbers, shrubs, or miniature plants that fit into patio containers.
What do they look like?
Rosa plants come with arching, trailing, scrambling, usually prickly stems that are dark-green in color. Sometimes the color of the stem is grey-green. Rose plants have toothed leaves, having a serrated appearance on their margins. The flowers may come in a variety of shapes including flat, cupped, rounded, urn-shaped, button-eye, pompon, and rosette. They produce berry-like fruits called hips.
Roses grow best in moisture-retentive, well-drained soils. They are very responsive to mulch-rich, well-fed, and fertile soils. These are heliophytes, so they like a sunny environment to flourish.
they do not thrive in waterlogged, poor, barren soil. If grown in shade, they produce very few flowers.
Beauty & Cosmetics
Rosa flowers are source materials for many perfumes as they provide a nourishing, refreshing, and long-lasting fragrance.
Rosa oil is used in many hair-care products as it is considered to be a good nourisher.
Rosewater is used as a facial mist for skin-toning.
Food & Drinks
Rosa’s hips are an excellent source of vitamin C and are sometimes used in syrups. They are also used as preservatives and can be found in jellies, marmalade, and some teas.
Hips are also eaten by birds. On the other hand, some birds like finches prefer to eat the seeds.
Rosewater is used in cooking in some eastern countries for some special dishes.
Petioles of some roses are used as an herbal tonic and are thought to regulate the function of the digestive system. Rosewater is used to treat many eye problems in Eastern countries.
What do you need to know before growing roses?
Choosing the right plant
Many factors play a role in choosing the right Rosa plant, but it all, in the end, narrows down to personal taste.
Roses are loved particularly for their flowers. So, usually, the flowers are the sole decisive factor. However, there can be subjective reasons behind your selection of a particular Rosa species:
- Whether you are looking for opulent, classic flowers of vibrant colors or you are going to grow the more intricate, hybrid, tea-roses with mixed colors.
- What type of fragrance do you prefer? A fruity fragrance of the old roses, or the musky, tea-scent odor of the modern tea-roses?
- The color of the flowers that you want to adore your garden with.
Height & size
You need to consider the full height a plant can achieve when it is in full bloom. This is important because roses can range from patio container plants to large bushes that might be as big as 10 feet in height. Knowing the maximum lateral growth of a plant is also important.
What forms do they come in?
A rose plant can be bare-rooted, containerized, or container-grown. The first one has its roots uncovered and should be planted as soon as possible. They are slightly low in cost and are packed to prevent the roots from drying out.
A containerized plant comes with a container with compost in it. The container-grown one is expensive and can be purchased at nurseries.
Planting a rose plant
The best time to plant a bare-root rose is in late autumn. When the spring kicks in, it will immediately start growing. The other two forms can be planted anytime in the year.
Best place to plant
It is best to plant a Rosa species in a sunny environment, but make sure that it is not exposed to a windy environment. There should be some space between the plants so that they do not have to compete for the resources.
How to plant roses?
First of all, you should plant roses in well-drained soil that does not completely dry out even in the summer months. Also, care must be taken while planting so as not to completely bury the stem in the soil.
- You should stake them well and permanently to avoid harsh wind currents.
- Stake them as soon as they are planted and replace the stakes if broken.
- The position of the stake should be such that it is facing the direction of the prevailing wind.
- Stakes should be placed deep in the soil so that it does not move.
- Use two ties for one plant, one should hold the stem against the stake and the other its shoots.
Rosa plants have deep roots so they do not need water at all once they are established in the soil. However, you should water them regularly for the first couple of years after planting. Water them directly near the base and do not water the shoots to avoid unnecessary fungal attacks.
You can water plants once a week, and it is better than showering them daily. But, if your plants are growing in a container or a pot, they will need to be watered regularly.
Roses are hungry plants and will grow profusely if fed and mulched with well-rotten animal and plant manure. The best time to add fertilizers is before and after flowering.
It is necessary to remove weeds that grow with roses. If possible, you should carry out weeding by hand, but be careful of the thorns that might wound your hands.
If you’re thinking about applying a weed killer, be cautious, as it might be damaging to delicate flowers.
If you do not deadhead the fading flowers, they will start forming hips soon. But, some Rosa species form very decorative hips, so you should not deadhead those. Also, hips are eaten by birds. If you want to listen to the birds chirping in your garden, give up the idea of deadheading old flowers and leave them to form elegant hips.