Everyday Roses Cover

Everyday Roses

SKU# 071440

How to Grow Knock Out® and Other Easy-Care Garden Roses

Paul Zimmerman


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Other Formats
  • Product # 071440
  • Type Paperback
  • ISBN 978-1-60085-778-2
  • Published Date 2013
  • Dimensions 8 1/2 x 10 7/8
  • Pages 192
  • Photos 200

"This book proves that growing roses is for EVERYONE!"
- Pat Shanley, Vice President/President Elect American Rose Society

 "Finally a rose book that has joy, pleasure, and gardening wisdom at its core."
- Steve Hutton, President/CEO Star Roses and Plants/Conard-Pyle

 "Anyone who reads this book and follows Paul's philosophy cannot help but have a garden of healthy roses."
- Peter Beales, Author and rose expert

"In his new book, Everyday Roses, Paul proves that ANYONE can indeed grow beautiful roses without an arsenal of chemicals. His practical approach is perfect for beginners and can be eye-opening for the seasoned gardener looking for a better way."
– SouthernLiving.com

Yes, you really can grow healthy, beautiful roses! If you love roses, but think they’re too hard to grow, check out Everyday Roses – your trusty guide to growing Knock Out and other easy-care garden roses. Here you’ll find clear, accessible information for successfully growing beautiful roses in a wide range of colors.

There's no book on roses like this one. Everyday Roses is designed specifically for weekend gardeners and homeowners who love roses but don’t have the time or inclination to deal with the care and prevention measures high-maintenance roses require. This handy reference shows how you can enjoy the best of both worlds: gorgeous, healthy, long-flowering roses with a minimum of fuss.

Simple, sensible advice from a rose expert. Author and rosarian Paul Zimmerman shows how garden roses can play an important part in any landscape design. He introduces gardeners to lots of easy-to-grow varieties that can be used effectively as flowering shrubs, groundcover, or climbing vines.

Out with the old, in with the new! With Everyday Roses, all the old ideas about roses no longer apply. Instead of complicated, time-consuming maintenance programs, here you’ll find simple easy-to-follow advice on planting and care. And, of course, starting out with no-fuss varieties like the Knock Out is the key to success!

About the Author
Paul Zimmerman has worked in landscaping and roses for more than twenty years. He is the coordinator of the Biltmore Rose Trials, a Certified Consulting Rosarian at the American Rose Society, and is a consultant for many private and public gardens. He conducts rose lectures and rose-growing workshops nationwide and overseas, and is the U.S. licensing agent for several foreign rose breeders. Zimmerman lives in Campobello, SC. 

Preview a sample of this book below

Table of Contents

FOREWORD: Peter Beales ... 2
PREFACE: ... 4
INTRODUCTION: What Is a Garden Rose? ... 8

CHAPTER ONE: Buying Roses ... 14
CHAPTER TWO: Planting ... 28

CHAPTER THREE: Mulching, Watering, and Feeding ... 48
CHAPTER FOUR: Disease and Insects ... 64
CHAPTER FIVE: Pruning and Grooming ... 78

CHAPTER SIX: Roses in the Landscape ... 106

PART 4: ROSE GUIDE ... 146
CHAPTER SEVEN: Suggested Roses ... 148

APPENDIX ... 166
A Brief History of Roses ... 166
Should a Rose's Growth Habit Determine Its Class? ... 169
Rose Classes ... 171
Metric Equivalency Chart ... 175
Zone Map ... 175
Glossary ... 176
Resources ... 178
Photo Credits ... 181
Index ... 182


The general perception among gardeners is that roses are fussy garden divas, and while they bear beautiful blooms, they leave little to be desired in being attractive plants. They are considered to be "sticks with flowers on top"-rigid upright growth, blooms borne only on the tops of the canes, and generally having bare knees, meaning there is little foliage on the bottom half of the plant. While these diva roses can be nice plants if fussed over endlessly, they will not thrive and be attractive if they are grown and treated like the other ornamental plants in your garden. Many roses sold and grown in the United States over the last 40 years fit this diva description, hence the perception that roses are hard to grow.

Garden roses are the polar opposite. At their core, they are nothing more than flowering shrubs and should be used in the garden as such. No more and no less. They live in your garden without receiving any more attention than what is given to the other shrubs.

Characteristics of a Garden Rose
To begin with, garden roses are naturally disease resistant. This inherent disease resistance means they do not need regular spraying programs. Instead, their own inner immune system is built up through the use of good soil, natural fertilizers, and simple care techniques-ones that work in harmony with the rose while still leaving you time on the weekend to take in a movie.

Growthwise, they have an attractive overall shape. Their growth habit is of a pleasing shape, be it rounded, tall, or gracefully arching-and this means the entire plant, not just the flower at this or that stage of bloom. Because of this, they add to the overall aesthetic of your landscape, both in and out of flower.

Another important characteristic is that they have foliage. Don't laugh! One of the frequent comments gardeners make is that they are tired of roses that lose all their leaves due to disease, or because they weren't endlessly fussed over. Garden roses are well foliated from the ground to the top. Just think of a diva rose with bare legs; it is not very useful in the garden. Imagine if the guards outside Buckingham Palace were dressed in their elegant, tall black hats and beautiful braided coats but were without any trousers. While fun for some, it would look out of place and would greatly reduce the number of people posing for photos next to them. And lastly, it is important that the leaves are healthy looking, having a nice color of green, be it light or dark.

The time it takes to breed a garden rose, evaluate it, and ultimately bring it to market takes around 10 years. From hundreds of thousands of seedlings emerge only three to five roses worthy of being released to the public, which make rose breeders heroes of the garden world. Along the way, these roses have been tested, stressed, and observed under all kinds of natural outdoor conditions. Under these testing conditions, those with the right combination of disease resistance, attractive shape, growth habit, and flower quickly make themselves known and become garden roses.

Why the Garden Rose?
Garden roses are selected for the garden differently than divas. Diva roses are generally chosen first for their flower and growth habit, and their size and health come afterward-if at all. With garden roses, the growth habit, size, and health are considered first, and the flower color and style are last. Think about it. If you want a tall flowering plant to hide the foundation of your house, would you choose pansies just because of the pretty blue flower? If you wanted a low flowering plant for the front of your flower border, would you choose camellias because of their swirled pink blooms? Of course not! It would look ridiculous.

Garden roses are selected like other plants. In other words, like other plants, they are first and foremost selected for their landscape use: What is their job in the garden? Of course the flowers are a consideration, but as with other plants, the flowers come after their landscape use. Luckily with garden roses, we are spoiled when it comes to choices of the shape and color of their flowers. Blooms on garden roses are totally an individual choice. Some gardeners love single-petal roses such as the roses Home Run(r), 'Altissimo', and 'Dainty Bess'. The high, pointed centers and hybrid tea-shaped blooms have been admired by many. Some like the old-fashioned cupped blooms on antique roses, some like reflexed blooms where the petals bend out and downward, and some like the quartered blooms seen in the paintings of old masters. With garden roses, there is a perfect choice for everyone, and everyone's choice should be appreciated. So if the plant meets the landscape use criteria and you like the blooms, then it is a good garden rose for you. In a book on wine by Matt Kramer, he notes the question he always gets is "What is a good wine?" He responds by asking what was the most recent wine the questioner had, and did they like it? If they respond affirmatively, then he simply says, "Then for you that was a good wine." The same goes for rose flowers.

Let's be clear on one thing here: I am not applying the label "diva roses" to all roses outside of garden roses. There are many fine roses that are bred to be "cut-flower" roses, which are grown in large greenhouses to supply cut flowers for the florist industry. There are gardeners who enjoy the beauty and challenge of growing the hybrid tea roses that need more care. Additionally, there are many fine roses bred to be exhibition roses, which are grown for rose shows and shown by rose exhibitors for prizes. Each is beautiful in its own right, and rose exhibitors are some of the most talented, hardworking rose growers out there. Yet most show roses require more care and time than garden roses.

I am not saying garden roses are better than quality exhibition or cut-flower roses. They are different from those roses because they have a different job to do. Think of a poodle. You can have one groomed to the utmost for the Westminster Kennel Club dog show, or you can have one that isn't fussed over and just romps around the backyard with the kids. Underneath it all, they are both good dogs. Like different kinds of poodles, some roses simply serve a different purpose. Exhibition roses go to the rose show, and garden roses hang out in your backyard with the family. And I'm here to tell you how to grow the roses that hang out with the family.

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