Rose Tip of the Day

Those of our readers with green thumbs may find this tip very sophomoric, but nonetheless, our less-savvy readers like myself could potentially benefit.

During a recent visit from my relatives, my Grammy gave me a few tips for how to care for the rose bush in the front of my yard, and I learned a few others as well. I found, through testing this knowledge, that these tips were scientifically correct, as you'll see from the before and after photos.

Most healthy plants need a little help shedding their dead parts. (Gross.) If you properly prune your roses, they will continue to blossom until frost -- magically! To prune, simply wait until the flower has blossomed, and then just below the flower, snip off the dead bud. If an entire branch looks dead, or eaten by insects, the whole thing can be pruned off. Pruning helps the plant focus its energy on new buds and strong branches, rather than repairing dying or wilted branches.

This was a surprise to me. Roses like to be watered deeply and infrequently. Basically, watering them deeply helps them form long, strong roots, rather than shallow ones that remain near the surface to look for water.

Before and After
Ok, so check it out. At the start of the season, I had a rose bush pretty similar to my neighbors. My neighbor did, well, nothing with hers. And I follow Grammy's tips. Here's the difference.

Hers on top, mine on bottom (that's what she said):


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