As cooler days finally start to arrive, it is the perfect excuse to get back out in the garden more! Enjoy the last days of your blooms, make the last of your harvests, and get yourself (and your garden) ready for fall! The rose garden is easy to maintain at this time of year. Here is what you can do in your zone to keep your roses happy this month:
Cold Climate (Zones 2-4):
- Clean up Fallen Leaves. As your roses start to drop leaves, pick them up and keep the area tidy. This measure will help reduce foliar diseases this season and the next.
- Spray Neem Oil. Often called dormant oil, oils heavy in Neem Oil are a safe, natural way to smother pest insects and keep them from over-wintering in your roses. This will greatly reduce the amount of aphid and other pest problems you are likely to see next spring.
Temperate Climate (Zones 5-7):
- Stop Deadheading and Fertilizing. To get ready for winter, roses need plenty of time to go into dormancy. During the fall they naturally harden off and concentrate sugars in their canes, creating a kind of natural antifreeze. But they don’t want to enter dormancy if they haven’t set any seeds yet. If you keep feeding and deadheading your roses, they will still be trying to bloom and thus will be more susceptible to frost damage. Let your roses stop blooming and develop hips and they will enter dormancy much earlier.
- Treat Pests with Earth-Tone. Keep battling the bugs as needed.
- Apply Fungicide as Needed. This summer has been wet in a lot of the US, which unfortunately means more foliar disease. Keep your roses healthy with copper fungicide.
Hot Climate (Zones 8-10):
- Treat Pests with Earth-Tone. A gardener’s work is never done! It is best to stay proactive – if you wait until the pest problem is very obvious, you’re probably dealing with a large, well-established population.
- Keep Watering. Drought stress continues to be a problem for roses until the weather really cools down.
- Keep Pulling Weeds. With weed problems slowing down, a good final push of weeding should keep your garden tidy until spring!
You can find Earth-Tone, Copper Fungicide, and Neem Oil sprays here, as well as plenty of other supplements for your rose garden.
One last thing: enjoy the Fall!