History of Brandy Roses:
The hybrid tea rose Brandy was first bred in 1981 in the United States by Jack Christensen and Herbert Swim. Both are well known rose breeders here in the US and are credited with creating numerous varieties of roses that are available on the market today. This particular rose was created by crossing the First Prize rose with the Golden Wave rose. The result is a fabulous apricot colored hybrid tea rose that produces large blooms and has a sweet, mild fragrance of tea.
The blooms on Brandy roses will reach an average diameter of about 5 inches and they will be somewhat full with as many as 40 petals each. The plant itself will grow to about 4 to 6 feet tall at full maturity and somewhere around 3 feet across. The rose Brandy is a vigorous grower that is unusually tolerant of heat. It is somewhat resistant to diseases with the exception of blackspot, so be sure to take a few extra precautions to keep the leaves dry and healthy. This is a great choice for cut flowers and you can expect this rose to do well in zones 7 and warmer.
Growing Brandy Roses:
Growing the rose Brandy is a pretty simple matter and you can give it the same growing conditions that you have given your other hybrid tea roses in the past. Probably one of the most important decisions you will make in the life of your roses is where in your garden you plant them. How much sun light your rose gets is most important. You want to provide your roses with at least 6 to 8 hours each day of direct sun light if you want them to perform.
You also will need to grow your Brandy roses in soil that drains well. This is especially important for this variety that is susceptible to blackspot. If you are growing your roses in containers then this is not as big of a concern as you can select the right potting mix. If you are growing your roses in the garden however, this becomes a bigger concern. If you are unsure about the quality of your soil, I always suggest to growers that they take a trip to the local garden center and pick up a bag of organic compost. Mix this into your garden soil at a ratio of one part compost for every 2 parts soil. This is a great mix and your rose Brandy will love it!
Planting Brandy Roses:
Getting your rose Brandy into the ground is a simple matter and just about anyone can get the job done well with a few basic hand tools and a little ambition. If you bought your rose locally, then more than likely they already planted it for you in a container and took the guesswork out of it. For these, dig your hole at least twice the diameter of the container it came in and equally as deep. This will give you plenty of room for your soil mix while still keeping the bud union at its current depth.
If you bought your Brandy roses online, then they might have shipped them to you as bareroot plants. You should soak these overnight in a bucket of room temperature water prior to planting day to rehydrate the roots. Then dig your hole as wide as the longest roots and deep enough to let you set your rose on top a mound of soil, while keeping the bud union no more than an inch or two below the surface of the soil.
Once your rose Brandy is set in place, spread the roots out in all directions around the mound and then back fill the hole only halfway to begin with. Take your garden hose and water the loose soil heavily until it flows around the roots like mud, then go ahead and back fill the hole the rest of the way. Give the soil one more heavy watering and top off any final settling that may have occurred. This method should ensure that no air pockets have formed around the roots.
You also may need to mound up some fresh soil around the exposed canes if your climate is very hot and dry. This will help prevent the canes from drying out until new growth forms, at which time you can remove the mound back to ground level.
Caring for Brandy Roses:
Taking care of your rose Brandy is much the same as any other rose and you can follow the tried and true rose care guidelines that you are already using. You will need to make sure that you provide ample water for your roses, while being careful not to overdo it. For most mild climates this is usually around one deep watering per week. If you live in a hot and dry climate however, you should check your roses every couple of days.
You also should give your Brandy roses a dose of a granular all-purpose fertilizer at the beginning of spring once you see the leaves start to form. This will give your roses a great jump on the year. Like most hybrid tea roses, the rose Brandy is a repeat bloomer so it will benefit from a few additional feedings over the course of the season. I typically give my roses a second feeding just after the first big bloom, and then a third feeding sometime around the middle of the summer to encourage late season blooms. This rose will do well on this schedule also.
Pruning Brandy Roses:
You should prune your rose Brandy in the very early spring before the leaves begin to sprout. This makes it much easier to see what you are doing. Start by removing all the dead and discolored canes from the plant and set these aside. Next, prune any overlapping lateral canes so they do not compete with one another for sun light once the leaves open. Lastly, give the remaining canes a cut back by about one third of their current height to promote new growth.
This is also the time to clean up around the base of your Brandy roses and get rid of all the dead leaves and debris that tends to collect around roses. Throw away all of this material in the trash along with your cuttings. Never throw them into the compost bin or let them lay around your roses. Finish up your pruning by giving your rose Brandy a fresh new layer of mulch to begin the new growing season.
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