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Hi everyone, I have over a dozen 12 inch "kiftsgate" climbing rose plants which are getting stressed waiting in pots. I intend to plant them along an old stock fence, and train them along it, through the wild fuschia bushes and Elders that have grown along the length of the lane. First, is it going to take to growing along old stock fencing and through bushes, second, has anyone any extra advice on preparing the ground, third, am I better leaving it to plant in Autumn (even though it is getting stressed in the pots) and finally, is this rose fairly resistant to wind and weather as I am half way up a mountain by the sea.
Sorry it's a long and multi-clause question, any answers to any of the four parts will be most appreciated.
This rose can get HUGE!
I would definitely get them planted as soon as possible. Climbing roses are designed to clamber up through trees. I'd have thought they would run along a strong hedge. Elder normally grows as a small tree. I don't know whether an elder would be strong enough to support a big Kiftsgate rose. No harm in trying.Roses benefit from planting in a large hole. David Austin recommends adding 'generous quantities of well-rotted manure'. Humus-rich compost with a little general purpose fertiliser added would do.
I have just heard Bob Flowerdew say on the radio when talking of roses that he 'made the mistake' of planting Kiftsgate. Beware.
I have a Kiftsgate planted in the front to cover the dull brick of our front house wall. It is very vigorous and has very spiky thorns. It flowers once, in June and attracts loads of insects. The flowers are perfumed and followed by red hips for autumn bird food so a good plant for wildlife. It will grow to 10 metres if allowed and should be trainable along an old stock fence.
Mine has survived strong winds and very cold temperatures. I thought we'd lost it after nearly all the stems froze in Jan 2009 (-32C at its worst) but it has come back and is flowering again this year.
Prepare a good deep planting hole with lots of well rotted manure and garden compost. Plant it with the graft union about 3 to 5 cms below soil level and keep it well watered till mid autumn so it doesn't get stressed while trying to support top growth and produce new roots. Make sure you soak the pot in a bucket until no more air bubbles form before planting it. Tie in stems as horizontally as possible to encourage new flwoering shoots to form. It flowers on the previous year's growth.
I've just bought a Paul's scarlet climber in a pot.It was from a nursery that closed down. It's in a large 12" pot but there is hardly any green foliage on it and 2 small flowers. I guess it's been in it for ages and badly needs to go into the garden. Should I prune the straggly bits back? Also it's got moss and weeds growing on the surface so I'd like to remove the top couple of inches of soil. Will this be OK? I don't know much about roses- can't you tell!
I'd start by taking the flowers off, and yes, remove tatty or crossing growth, but don't remove all the leaves in the process.
The poor growth may be down to the rose having been frozen in its pot and having poor roots, but it should be making new ones now. Yes, put it in the ground, mixing some blood. fish and bone into the bottom of the hole. Plant with the graft union a couple of inches below the soil level, and make sure that you keep it watered until autumn. Definitely remove the layer of weeds and moss - they won't be doing the rose any good.
Thanks everybody for your advice, it is really appreciated. The weather wasn't up to planting streight away because of all the mud, but I'll be having a go at planting as soon as it's possible. It sounds very exciting that they grow so huge. I am trying to keep the dogs from next door from getting under the stock fence and I am sure it will help if it is a good thorny rose. There are lots of trees for it to scramble up too. Some are quite mature so should be able to hold the weight. I will get some photos of the finished results in a year or two and post them on the web site. Again, thank you all so much, I feel I know what I am about now and ready to start digging.
This is mine in 2008 at 3 years old - the year before it got frozen to bits and was cut back to one branch. http://s211.photobucket.com/albums/bb262/Obelixx_be/2008%20garden/?action=view¤t=0806Kiftsgate-1.jpg
It's finally almost as big again with plenty of new growth this spring but that won't flower till next year - assuming it doesn't get frozen again. It'll be attached to the wall by autumn and that should help keep it warmer.
Thanks Alina, I now know what to do once the garden dries a bit. We've had so much rain that when I dug a hole yesterday it filled up with water straight away! I don;t want to lose this one as it's in memory of my Dad. I'm collecting plants with names of those no longer with us, in my memory border.