Paul N

Latest posts by Paul N

Roses on my driveway

Posted: 09/08/2012 at 22:05

I think your idea sounds really good. Roserie de l'Hay is a rugosa rose and extremely trouble free, healthy and require little pruning. One word of warning. Whilst rugosas tolerate poor soil, no rose enjoys sandy soil so I would dig in lots and lots of well rotted horse muck to improve the soil. All one colour - deep red? Fine and it does have a wonderful perfume. Leave the large red hips to over winter so don't deadhead them.

Talkback: How to take rose cuttings

Posted: 01/08/2012 at 17:13

Right, there still seem to be many gardeners who aren't sure about rose cuttings. Now there are various ways of doing it. The slit trench method, which has always failed for me as I tend to forget them and they dry out, then the pot method. This method does seem to work for me.

When to take cuttings? Ideally September/October but a long stem of one of my ramblers snapped off last week so I am trying it nevertheless. Sometimes you have to do it when the opportunity arises but September/October is best.

How to take cuttings? 9" lengths, thickness of a pencil or even thicker, a sloping cut above a bud and a horizontal cut below a bud (so you plant them the correct way up). Get a tall 'rose' flower pot (the tall narrow ones), mix up a 50/50 mixture of general purpose compost and vermiculite or perlite. Tip into flower pot and moisten the compost mixture. You want it damp rather than ringing wet. Remove all of the leaves except the top few from the cutting, dip the bottoms into hormone rooting powder and insert into compost mixture, say with six around the side.

You WILL lose some so six is not a high number.  Some people now cover with a poly bag and some don't. I've tried both methods and found they can easily get botritus in poly bags. So I label up the pots with name and date of planting, and place on the greenhouse staging (but NOT in direct sunlight). I then go in every day for the first few weeks and mist the cuttings with a hand sprayer and water. When the cuttings begin to shoot well, I reduce the spraying.

One year later, and NOT BEFORE, I pot up each individual cutting.

One year after that, the roots will be well established enough to plant out.

I have tried cutting corners and potting them up earlier and although the top growth looks impressive, the roots were small and not developed. Now go and try it - in September/October. Good luck!


tonights gardeners world

Posted: 01/08/2012 at 16:54

Give them to friends as gifts but really, don't be in any rush to get them into the ground. Rose roots take time to establish. I've cuttings which have flowered after 14 months but still won't put them in the ground for a few months yet.

Welly boots

Posted: 28/07/2012 at 16:45

Thin socks?



Posted: 22/07/2012 at 12:57


We opened our garden to the public a fortnight ago, within a small window of half decent weather, although we did get a cloudburst which lastest ten minutes. WE attracted about 100 visitors and raised over £300 which was divided between the local hospice and the Friends of the local ancient church.


We have a 'Bobby James' which has clambered 30ft up into the branches of a mature willow and I expect 'Rambling Rector' do be as vigorous. A neighbours Leylandii we've together pruned back to 8ft tall but it was overhanging on my side. I've now hacked this back and the unsightly mess will never grow back so my intention is that 'Rambling Rector' will scramble amongst the hacked off Leylandii and give us an attractive screen.

Graham Thomas took his collection of old roses to Mottisfont and I hope to visit there in the next few weeks, although as my rose collection has now reached 80 or thereabouts, a rose has to be truly exceptional for me to want it. I have two in mind - 'Climbing Rusticana', a Meilland rose (also known as 'Poppy Flash' - our grandaughter is a 'Poppy', born on the 11th day of the 11th month of the 11th year ) but I can't face the £25 postage, and 'Papa Meilland', allegedly the World's most fragrant rose, and 'Surpassing Beauty', a rose found in 1980 in Woolverstone Churchyard in Suffolk by Humphrey Brooke, and now sold only by Peter Beales. 

I've recently began to take cuttings with mixed success. October cuttings seem to work for me, which I grow in a 50/50 mixture of GP compost and vermiculite. I wait a full year in the pot before separting them into seperate pots plus a further year and the roots will have developed sufficiently to plant out. I find they make a much appreciated gift for friends.



Posted: 21/07/2012 at 21:16

Mouse traps baited with chocolate.

Permanent Markers

Posted: 21/07/2012 at 20:37

I use black 24cm Flat T labels (code LTSL250BL) and Artline 440F PaintMarker pens in 0.8mm and 1.2mm from

Weatherproof and absolutely brilliant. I have labelled up all of my 80 rose varieties with their names, HT or floribunda, hybridisers, and year produced, as well writing them in my gardening diary.

In my opinion these are the best labels short of getting those professional looking engraved ones made.

Taking cuttings with a heel?

Posted: 21/07/2012 at 20:31

It's the thin end which is most likely to rot; it's just the tip which needs trimming off. 


Posted: 21/07/2012 at 20:29

I'm retired so I'm relieved to say I don't know the meaning of hectic. I went to the Rose weekend only to look and learn, intending to place an order for bare root roses later. But around a corner hidden away behind a hedge I found forty or fifty potted roses in poor condition. These were two year old plants which were too poor to sell. Not for me they weren't! I spoke to the staff and we came to an agreement. I wouldn't complain if they failed to thrive, and I could have them for a special price. I loaded the poor things into my Citroen 2CV and felt I'd won the pools

The varieties? 'Rambling Rector', 'Rosa Mundi', 'Ferdinand Pichard', 'Graham Thomas', 'James Mason', 'Clarence House', and 'Celestial'. All absolute stunners and with TLC will be great next year. 'Rosa Mundi' dates back to 1100AD. 'Ferdinand Pichard' is maroon and white striped with a wonderful clove scent. 'James Mason' is a deep brick red. 'Clarence House' was presented to the Queen Mother, 'Celestial' is a pre-1810 Alba with lovely scent, and I have a hedge for 'Rambling Rector' to scramble through. Deep joy! 


Posted: 21/07/2012 at 09:26


Did you visit their recent Rose Garden Open Days? I drove up from Kent and it was well worth it. I came away with SEVEN roses! Plus a tea towel plus a DVD!


Discussions started by Paul N

Carol Klein's Glebe Cottage

Replies: 11    Views: 13107
Last Post: 21/04/2016 at 18:12

Himalayan Balsam

Replies: 9    Views: 2261
Last Post: 08/10/2012 at 21:21

Giverny in September

Replies: 7    Views: 1784
Last Post: 07/10/2012 at 17:39

Chelsea Flower Show

Replies: 3    Views: 1488
Last Post: 23/05/2012 at 20:09

Robinia pseudoacacia 'Frisia' problems

Replies: 5    Views: 5635
Last Post: 18/05/2012 at 19:39

Globe Artichoke

Replies: 7    Views: 1646
Last Post: 26/04/2012 at 23:53


Replies: 2    Views: 1188
Last Post: 25/04/2012 at 14:36

Britain's Oldest Rose Bush

Replies: 5    Views: 3408
Last Post: 11/06/2016 at 00:03
8 threads returned