Monday, May 17, 2010

How do I transplant an old rose bush from one state to another and when should I do it?

My grandparents have a rose bush in front of their home in PA that is estimated to be about 80+ years. It continues to bloom although not as well as previous years. My grandparents have since passed away and the house will be sold soon. I wanted to transplant one of the bushes from their house to my house in VA. What is the best season to do this in. The house will be put up for sale in the next couple of months. Any suggestions or help would be much appreciated. Thanks!!

How do I transplant an old rose bush from one state to another and when should I do it?
Do it now up to end of February. Dig at least a inch out from the drip line and down to get all roots. Place in root ball in a burlap sack keeping dirt moist. Not wet just moist. Dig new hole ensuring the top of the root line is level with dirt line. Don't forget to cut back every year. That maybe why it is not growing to good now. Do it now before the new home owners see it. Once planted most trees and bushes stay with home. Get her done!!
Reply:You will need to cut the rose back, remove any dead or deseased branches. If this is a tall rose, you still need to cut back the branches.

Use a very sharp spade (I use a transplanting type spade - has a long, narrow head, also called a ditch digging shovel) and dig around the plant, at least 1 and 1/2 feet around in a circle. Keep digging until the rose will move. Be patient. It will eventually move.

Gently prod the spade underneath the rose getting as much root as possible making a clean cut. This rose might have deep roots. Not to worry.

You can do this as a preperation for moving and leave the rose until last minute moving.

Place the rose in container or box lined with plastic, so you don't mess up your vehicle.

Plant immediately or within a few days. Keep the soil moist, but not wet. Plant at the same depth or an inch or two lower than it was originally. Put a handful of bone meal in the planting hole and mix with the soil, then place the plant in.

Roses are very tough. I have moved some of mine around using this method. Lucky climate here - north west coast I do it any time of year.

This should be done very early spring or as soon as soil is soft enough to dig, preferably plant is dormant.

Plant will take two weeks or so to adjust, but it will be alive.

Info on fertilizer, etc., check with a local garden centre.

Good Luck!
Reply:All the advice given is excellent. I have one more point, check the stem to see if it is grafted. When trimming back the woody material, check very carefully the stem where it comes from the root crown. Follow this up the stem for 6-8 inches. If there is a noticeable joint then make sure that you DO NOT cut all the material above that joint off. If you do, you will lose the "Rose" that you have.

If you have a grafted "Rose" you can take slips from the above graft section and graft them onto slips from the below graft portion. The result is generally a revitalized plant.
Reply:I'm in Toronto, and the best time for transplanting shrubbery,around here, is very early spring. you will have to prune the rosebush back to approx. a foot or two from the ground. It sounds a little drastic, i know, but don't worry, it won't hurt the bush, if it's already trimmed back, good, all the better. providing the ground is soft enough, dig down, and get as much root as possible, once out of the ground, make sure that the roots are always covered with soil, at all times, keep moist. wrap both roots and soil in burlap, or plastic. the plant will last several days like this, so you can transport it. when re-planting the bush, dig a hole large enough to add some good soil, your local grocery store or nursery, usually has what your looking for. good luck, my parents had a rose bush like that, it was fantastic!

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