I was wrestling a David Austin rose out if its container today, and
being a puny girl was having trouble. Finally it felt like it was going
to slide free, hooray, only I quickly discovered that the reason it slid
out so readily was that it was no longer attached to most of its roots
:(. I planted her anyway and now I'm curious what her chances are and
what I might do to improve them. She's currently a couple feet tall
with some very small buds.
trim back the top to be in balance with
the amount of root system you have left
when it starts to actively grow use
a weak solution of liquid fertilizer
to give it a boost once in a while.
I would not fertilize during the first year in the ground. Most
fertilizers contain nitrogen, which promotes foliage growth. You do not
want the foliage to outgrow the ability of reduced roots to supply
moisture. Actually, this is a good idea even if you did not damage the
The only nutrient I would give during the first year would be bone meal
or superphosphate. These have to be dug into the planting hole below
the roots. Both are sources of phosphorus, which does not readily
disolve and must therefore be placed where the roots will find it.
However, you must then place an inch or two of plain soil above the
phosphorus-enriched soil so the roots do not immediately touch the
nutrient. That is, the roots must find the phosphorus and not be
planted directly in contact with it.
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean, see
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