Roses

How to grow roses: Transplanting roses

Watch this video to see how it is done.

When planning to transplant roses, it is always best to prepare the new location first – follow the above procedure to prepare the bed. The same method applies when preparing individual holes, which should be at least 60 cm wide.

The rose bushes to be moved should be pruned or cut back considerably before they are dug up. This latter task is made easier if two people participate, with two spades. The blade of the spade is pushed down repeatedly in a full circle about 30 cm from the centre of the bush, cutting any roots that spread beyond this area. Once the full circle has been achieved, the spades are simultaneously pushed down opposite one another and tilted, and the bush is lifted from the ground. If there is considerable resistance in lifting the bush, it means some major roots have not been cut. Rather than levering or pulling the bush too vigorously, use the spade to cut such roots cleanly before attempting again to lift the rose. When this is done, shake off the remaining soil and place the bush in a bucket of water, or keep it under moist hessian or plastic sheeting in a shade, best under a roof. Take special care not to leave the bush in the sun at all. Immediate replanting is ideal, but bare-root roses can safely be kept for several days in cool and moist conditions.

Before replanting, check the roots and remove those that are broken, as well as cutting away dead, woody parts at the crown or bud union.  Be careful not to replant too deeply: the bud union should be just below the soil level. Water the newly planted roses well, using a hand-held hose in order to expel trapped air. Only weekly watering is required until mid-August when new growth is visible and temperatures have risen. In well drained soil the newly transplanted rose can handle watering more often.

Back to ‘How to grow roses’