❤ marvelling at roses in October ’17 ?

  • In the rose garden with Ludwig
  • Happenings
  • Rose Care for October
  • Rose of the Month

“However small one’s garden becomes, even shrinking at last to a flower on a bedside table, the whole of creation is there.” Katherine Swift “The Morville Hours”

In the Rose Garden with Ludwig

The relatively warm winter we experienced inland continued into Spring and the roses responded accordingly. The early flowering varieties are virtually in full bloom. We finger pruned and topped a good percentage of our container plants to ensure continuous flowering.

The roses in our sales area are showing a lot of colour already.

This David Austin English Rose, ‘Lady of Shallot’ has only been in the ground for 6 months!

‘Isidingo’ is always the first climber to start flowering.

These ‘Afrikaans’ bushes were pruned at the end of May and are covered with blooms right now!

Every second row has been pinched to stagger the flowering.

The Spring Care workshops presented around the country gave me a good opportunity to see how the roses looked in other regions. Talking to gardeners about their specific situations always gives me insight into what challenges they face.

In the Western Cape, naturally, not having an endless supply of water is the biggest one. Roses prove over and over again, that they can withstand drought.

The fastidious use of water – applying less but making sure it gets to the roots – is adequate for the roses and they are willing and able to perform with less. Collecting and using grey water is now widely and successfully practised.

If you are contemplating using grey water for your garden, we welcome you to watch our video on how easy it is to implement…

A very happy ‘Mme Alfred Carriere’ at Babylonstoren.

You can be sure that the roots are as wide and
deeply settled as a large tree’s. Waterwise at its best!

It was interesting to note that, especially in the Western Cape, the old leaves were not pulled off after winter pruning. It is ironic that we do so much to retain the leaves, by spraying to prevent defoliation by black spot in autumn and fertilising into April to prolong flowering into winter, but when we want them to drop, they don’t because of a dry, frost-free winter.

This is not detrimental to the rose, but it certainly holds back peak spring performance. The old leaves continue to photosynthesise, so the plants are not stimulated into making new shoots and foliage. In addition one must expect early spider mite infestation. They love breeding on the old leaves.

To stimulate spring flowers this hedge should have been sheared at pruning time.

This climber is hardly sprouting new leaves as it still hasn’t dropped last season’s.

The winter leaves are delaying sprouting on this Standard Iceberg.


Our 2017/18 is hot off the press and has been posted to you!

We are thrilled to reveal the secret of the winning name of this exciting novelty that graces the front page: ‘Forever Delight’!

Look out for this season’s Stamina “must have” novelties!


Spring Rose Show, Friday to Sunday, 6 – 8 October, from 8am to 5pm

Lose yourself among millions of rose blooms and stand a chance to name your own rose.

The 46th Spring Rose Festival features:

Creative rose displays amongst VW beetles and buses.

The unveiling of this year’s exciting novelty roses.

A ‘Name your Own Rose’ lucky draw.

Stand a chance to have this rose named by you! Enter the lucky draw by buying a ticket here…

This is the first time that we are opening the naming of a rose to the public.

To be eligible for the lucky draw, buy a ticket, before 9am Sunday October 8, for any of the “Secrets of Rose Breeding’ talks by Ludwig or Anja.

The cost per ticket is R 280.00. To purchase a ticket for the lucky draw, click here…

It is not necessary to be at draw or the talk to be eligible for the prize, which includes 20 of your own named roses.

If you however would like to learn more about the fascinating process of how new roses are created, we would love for you to join us:

Sunday, 8 October at 10 am, Ludwig’s Rose Farm, Pretoria

Saturday, 14 October at 10 am, Ludwig’s Roses Winelands

Sunday, 22 October at 10 am, Ludwig’s Star Roses, Assagay

To book click here…

The lucky draw will be at Ludwig’s Rose Farm on Sunday, 8 October at 11:30am.

Friday 6 and Saturday 7 October

  • Experience the colourful splendour of the roses in full flush
  • View the VW and roses expo in the Rose Shed
  • Enjoy wine tastings from the Kleine Zalze Wine Estate
  • Visit the Rose Kitchen for rose-inspired menus by chef Tony Barnett or enjoy casual deli food whilst strolling through the roses or relaxing on the picnic lawns
  • Hop on the tractor-train rides through the rose fields
  • Bring your children to enjoy the play garden

Sunday, 8 October

  • Experience the colourful splendour of the roses in full flush
  • View the VW and roses expo in the Rose Shed
  • 10am: Entertaining talk by Ludwig Taschner on ‘The Secrets of Rose Breeding’. Book tickets here…
  • 11am: The naming of a new rose after stage and television actress Elize Cawood. Meet Elize and her husband, fellow actor, Wilson Dunster
  • 11:30am: The winner of the Name Your Rose lucky draw will be drawn and announced by Elize Cawood
  • Enjoy wine tastings from the Kleine Zalze Wine Estate
  • Visit the Rose Kitchen for rose-inspired menus by chef Tony Barnett or enjoy casual deli food whilst strolling through the roses or relaxing on the picnic lawns
  • Hop on the tractor-train rides through the rose fields
  • Bring your children to enjoy the play garden

Rose Bus Tour – 14 October

We will be visiting four gardens this year. Two are ‘new’ gardens that haven’t been visited before in Waterfall Country Estate and Saxonwold. We also return to two of our favourite rose gardens that we visited some 8 years ago: a park-like garden in Bryanston and a medium-sized garden in Wallace street in Waverly. There will be two buses and we still have some space left, but not much!

Registration is from 7.30m and the last bus leaves at 8.30am sharp from Ludwig’s Roses Egoli. The cost per person is R 350.00.

Please book with Petrisia at 012 5440144 or email petrisia@ludwigsroses.co.za

Rose competitions

I am pleased that some Rose and Garden societies are staging rose competitions this season. I have been asked to officiate as a judge. The more entries the more fun. You do not need to be a member of a society. If your roses are looking good bring them to the show.

Johannesburg Friday 6th October at Morningside Shopping Center arrive between 7am and 10am for further info phone 083 985 8632

Pietermaritzburg 21st October for more info contact midlandsrose@gmail.com

Wakkerstroom 3rd November for info contact Claudine 017 7300316 grasslandcottage@gmail.com

Fouriesburg 28th October at Oranje Gasteplaas contact Mona Scheepers simonafs@gmail.com

Celebrate Garden Day

On Sunday the 15th, we are offering a 10% discount on all rose plants at all our rose centres countrywide, in celebration of appreciating nature by gardening around your home.

Read more about this wonderful initiative here…

Step by Step Rose Care for October

It is fun strolling through ones rose garden at this early stage of flower development. Each variety is different, whether it is the colour of the leaves, or how the flower buds are carried: as dense or loose clusters, candelabras or single, long stems.

This allows one to start manipulating them according to ones wishes or expectations.

Disbudding, by pulling side buds off below the bigger centre bud, produces one good quality bloom for picking later.

Removing the centre of a candelabra especially on basal stems allows the lower shoots to develop into super cut flowers.

Breaking out the centre bud or bloom from dense clusters allows for an evenly developed cluster that is not spoiled by the centre bloom maturing before the others.

Blooms before they have been disbudded.

The side buds have been nipped off, to channel energy into the single remaining buds.

Water shoots or basal stems are best finger pruned

to strengthen the cells into becoming woody quicker.

It prevents them from breaking off in the wind.
The lower eyes will sprout super cut flowers
…and please don’t believe that it is cruel, it stimulates growth, like a hair cut!

The centre bud of this ‘Blue Ribbon’ candelabra was removed early and

allowed space for the remaining stems to develop longer with bigger blooms.

‘Duet’ develops loose clusters, where each bud has enough space to develop.

The buds are all at similar developmental stages.

Disbudding is not necessary on this free flowering variety.

‘Satchmo’ flowers in dense clusters.

The centre bloom fully opens and

pushes the still tight side buds to the side.

Breaking off the centre bud allows the remaining buds

to develop nicely and flower evenly.

A bush that just produces green leaves and blind shoots is not flourishing. It is a clear indication that the roots are not happy. Spiking around the bush and filling the holes with compost might just encourage new root development and strong sprouting.

Sprouting of green and not purplish leaves on vigourously growing shoots

is a clear indication that the rose’s roots are not happy.

Twenty years is a good age for a rose. For some reason the old wood starts drying out and one needs to encourage sprouting from the base to rejuvenate such a bush. This ‘Sutter’s Gold’ is one of them. Note the new shoots already sprouting at the base. The huge dead stem is best sawed off.

When cutting blooms for the vase one needs to retain a good balance of leaves. It is better for the bush to cut blooms half way down, retaining a lot of leaves.

Alternatively cut one long stem and then a short stem.

Cutting off faded blooms (also called deadheading) encourages sprouting of new quality blooms. Doing so frequently (twice a week) ensures continuous flowering. When deadheading, the number of leaves retained are important. Long stems are best cut half way down, on shorter stems, the old blooms are cut off with about two good leaves.

 Watch this video that shows you where on the stem to pick a bloom for the vase.

Fertilising depends very much on water availability. If water is sparse, don’t apply fertiliser. If normal watering is possible, fertilise with Vigorosa after the first flush is over and most of the blooms have been removed. That will certainly boost new growth.

Applying Vigorosa is quick and easy.

You simply sprinkle a measuring cup around

the base of the plant and water in well.

Pest control should not be neglected and prevention is better than cure.

Our recommended cocktail makes it relatively easy to measure out and mix with the required litres of water in a spray pump. It takes care of most of the niggly little insects and fungus diseases.

Rose Protector too is a ready to use cocktail and it can be alternated with our cocktail fortnightly.

The garlic in our cocktail acts as a preventative to insects who are attracted by the scent of the roses. But the fruit and CMR beetles have a finer nose and will still arrive at the most fragrant blooms.

Spraying with Plant Care or Cyper when the beetles are most active and are busy eating the blooms has an almost immediate effect. The beetles disappear within minutes.

They will return within two to three weeks and the spraying needs to be repeated. Having a two litre spray bottle ready makes it easy to spray onto the beetles. There is no need to do the whole bush.

Make sure to keep such insecticides safely away from children. Just look at how much fun my two year old granddaughter, Sophia, had when she could spray clean water at us during my talk in the Winelands.

Sophia, my granddaughter squirting water at us with a spray bottle.

As summer arrives it is most important to ensure that the water in the soil stays cool. This can only be achieved by covering the soil in the rose bed with a mulch. Peanut shells, pine needles, crushed peach or apricot pips, lawn clippings mixed with leaves, very coarse bark chips, even pebbles, paving stones and low growing plants i.e. Alyssum, are all effective.

Rose of the Month: RHONA LYA LUDeligra (N)

‘Rhona Lya’ was named in celebration of Mrs Rhona Lubner’s birthday. It is a vigorous Hybrid Tea rose. Young plants quickly grow into a stately bush, neat and upright.

The sturdy stems carry shapely, firm petalled blooms. The buds unfold and reveal a deep cognac colour that flows from hues of deep cream to honey gold as the blooms slowly opens. They have a good vase life and best of all exude a distinct sweet, honey fragrance. With its natural vigour and healthy large foliage, this variety will perform happily in mixed rose beds or in groups on its own.

During October the roses deliver their peak performance all over South Africa.

We look forward to welcoming you at any one of our rose centres across the country!

We have experienced our first summer thunderstorm and rain shower, which bodes well for the rest of the season. Let us keep our fingers crossed…

Enjoy the roses, wherever you are!

Rose greetings,