How to Grow Patio Roses in Containers
When to Plant: Fall or early spring
At Their Best: Early to midsummer
Time to Complete: 30 minutes
- large container, at least 18 inches deep
- broken clay pot pieces
- soil-based potting mix
- bagged manure
- slow-release fertilizer
- mycorrhizal fungi
- patio rose, such as 'Regensberg'
- bedding plants, such as bacopa
Prepare the Container
Plant your pot in situ, since it will be heavy and difficult to move once planted. Place a layer of broken pots or plastic pieces at the bottom of the container. Add a layer of potting mixed with well-rotted manure (one part manure to ten parts soil).
Check Planting Depth
Place the rose, in its pot, on the soil and check that the graft union (swelling at base of stems) will be below the soil after planting. Remove or add soil to adjust the planting level, and mix in slow-release fertilizer and mycorrhizal fungi. Then remove the rose from its container and set it in the pot.
Plant Up Annuals
Fill around the root ball with the soil and manure mixture. Wearing gloves, firm it in gently with your hands. Leave a gap of 2 inches between the soil and the rim of the pot to allow space for watering. For added summer color, after the last spring frost, plant trailing bedding plants around the edge.
Water the plants well after planting; you may have to add a little more soil after watering if it exposes the roots. A mulch of manure over the top of the soil will help retain moisture. Keep the container moist during the growing season, and stand it on "feet" during winter to make sure excess water drains away easily. (Tip: A larger pot will provide more insulation against the cold.)
Tip: Feeding Your Roses
In spring, remove the top layer of soil and add some fresh soil mixed with a granular rose fertilizer, applying it according to the manufacturers' instructions. You may need to top up with a liquid feed in the summer, but avoid doing so in late summer because this will encourage soft growth that's vulnerable to frost.