The types of fertilizers roses love fuel their healthy Spring growth.
Roses love to eat. To stay healthy and strong they need the right nutrients.
The important primary nutrients roses love are Nitrogen, Phosphorous and Potassium.
What is the Right Amount of N, P and K for Roses?
Roses generally do well with a balanced fertilizer, with the accent on phosphorous. A common rose and flower NPK ratio is 4-8-4.
NPK numbers on fertilizer labels are given as a ratio. These ratios are simple (really) math. For example, a fertilizer with an NPK of 10-5-0 has twice as much nitrogen as phosphorous and no potassium.
Nitrogen is responsible for producing lots of green leaves. Low levels of nitrogen can stunt a roses growth and turn its leaves yellow. Too much nitrogen and your plant will grow like crazy—for a while. But they will be weakened and more likely succumb to disease later. Nitrogen is particularly important at the beginning of the growth season.
Sources of Nitrogen-Miracle Growth Fertilizer, a combination fertilizer and Alphalfa Meal, a single ingredient fertilizer
Phosphorous aids flower, seed and plant growth. Low levels of phosphorous may lead your plants to grow more slowly and be less resistant to disease and winter kill. Phosphorous is critical in the planting process and important throughout the entire growing season.
Sources of Phosphorous- A very slow single ingredient Phosphate Rock or a balanced NPK fertilizer
Potassium helps form protein and promotes carbohydrate synthesis. It aids in stem strength and cold hardiness. Low levels of potassium can cause stunted and poorly developed root systems.
Leaves are more likely to have a spotted, curled appearance.Potassium is critical at seasons end when new top growth should not be encouraged but rose plants, instead, need to fortify themselves for the winter to come.
Sources of Potassium-Single Ingredients Cold Water Kelp, Wood Ash and Green Sand and a balanced fertilizer with NPK
Other Nutrients Roses Need
To a lesser degree, roses need the secondary nutrients- calcium, magnesium and sulfur. They also use very small amounts of micronutrients: boron, copper, chlorine, iron, manganese, molybdenum and zinc.
All of these elements are present in healthy fertile soil with a good mix of organic matter produced in the natural cycle of life or in soil amendments like compost.
Types of Fertilizers- All Purpose and Single Ingredient Fertilizers
You can buy an all purpose fertilizer or buy single ingredient fertilizers, like alfalfa, bone meal, cottonseed meal, kelp meal and green sand and apply them one at a time according to the instructions on the box/bag.
Roses Love to Eat so Fertilize Them Regularly
A general helpful guideline is use these types of fertilizers every 2 weeks during the growing season and stop about 6 weeks before you expect the first frost. You want your roses to slow down before the cold weather hits so they do not have new exposed growth.
What if Your Roses Don't Respond to Regulary Feedings?
Take a stem of your suffering rose to your local nursery and ask them for advice. Common sources of problems for roses are poor drainage, lack of adequate light or a soil pH less than 5.5. and greater than 7.0.
You can also get on-line an see if you have a Master Gardener program in your area. These expert gardeners volunteer their time to many communities and are can talk to you on the phone or they are available to meet with folks who come to see them. Generally, they are available one afternoon a week at one of your local public gardens.
Not only is fertilizer good for your roses, it is also important for all plants especially vegetables. If vegetable gardening is something you like to try or already have, garden-planting-tips.com has informative information designed for beginner gardeners who want to grow a successful vegetable garden.