History of Veterans Honor Roses:
The rose Veterans Honor was bred in 1997 in the United States by Dr Keith Zary who many rose enthusiasts know as the individual responsible for over 400,000 varieties of roses that have been grown in Jackson & Perkins research greenhouses and gardens. Among his many achievements, he is only the second breeder of roses from the United States to win the Gold Medal Award from the RNRS, as well as the President's International Trophy. This particular rose became the Rose of the Year with Jackson & Perkins in the year 2000.
The Veterans Honor roses were created by crossing the Showstopper roses with an offspring pollen plant from the Royalty hybrid tea rose. The result was a stunning dark red rose that produces unusually large blooms that average 5.5 inches in diameter that give off a fragrance that smells like raspberries. The blooms of the rose Veterans Honor are somewhat full, each containing about 25 to 30 petals each. The Veterans Honor is a rose that will bloom over the entire growing season in repeated flushes.
Growing Veterans Honor Roses:
The rose Veterans Honor will lend itself well to being ground either in the ground or in a container on your porch or patio. It will grow to a mature height of about 4 to 5 feet which makes it very manageable for a wide variety of landscaping ideas. The most important decision you will make in the life of your rose is what location to plant it in. Veterans Honor roses need a lot of sun light in order to provide you all the ample blooms that you know it is capable of producing. A good rule of thumb is no less than 6 hours a day of direct sun light. The more you can give your roses however, the better they will do!
You should also try to find a location that has well drained soil for your rose, Veterans Honor. Roses in general will not do very well in spaces that stay damp or moist for long periods of time. The Veterans Honor is no different. If you are unsure about the quality of your garden soil, there are several amendments you can add to it to make it better suited for growing roses. In the next section about planting, we will cover one of those amendments that is cheap and very easy to mix in.
Planting Veterans Honor Roses:
So you have found the perfect spot for your rose Veterans Honor within your landscaping ideas. All that is left is to get the plant into the ground. Before you start digging, do yourself a favor and take a trip to the local garden center and pick up a bag of organic compost to mix in with your soil. This stuff is widely available and usually pretty inexpensive and boy does it make a wonderful addition to just about any soil your garden might have.
When you dig the hole for your Veterans Honor roses, mix in some of the compost at a ratio of 2 parts soil to 1 part compost, then use this as your back fill. You will be amazed at how quickly your roses will establish themselves.
If you ordered your rose Veteran Honor online, then you probably received it as a bareroot plant. The first thing you should do is soak the plant in lukewarm water overnight in a bucket, to bring it out of dormancy. Then the following day, dig a hole that is wide enough to fit all the roots without having to force them into the hole, and make sure it is deep enough so that you can mound up some of your soil mix in the center of the hole and still keep the bud union about an inch or two below the surface of the soil.
Once you have your rose set in place, back fill the hole only about halfway to start with your new soil mix. Using your garden hose, water the loose soil heavily until it is just about the consistency of mud. Then you can go ahead and back fill the hole the rest of the way and give it one more heavy watering. The reason for this is to ensure that the roots are covered evenly and completely with the soil, and that no air pockets have formed.
If you picked up your rose Veterans Honor locally, then it probably came in a container already established. These are even easier yet to plant. I like to dig holes for container plants that are twice the diameter of the container, and equally as deep. This gives a lot of room for the compost soil while still maintaining the same plant depth it had in the container.
Caring for Veterans Honor Roses:
Taking care of your Veterans Honor roses is easy. Make sure it has the proper amount of moisture without over-watering the plant. A good way to check is to stick your finger into the soil at the base of the rose. If your finger comes out dry then it's time to water. A good rule of thumb is one deep watering per week whether you do it or through natural rainfall.
You can also feed your rose Veterans Honor in the early spring with a good all-purpose granular fertilizer. As this is a repeat bloomer, you might want to give your roses a second feeding just as the first big bloom starts to form, then a 3rd feeding sometime around mid-summer to promote additional flushes. Just be sure to leave about 4 weeks in between feedings.
Pruning Veterans Honor Roses:
Pruning the rose Veterans Honor is easy and straight forward as well and should always be done in early spring before the leaves open up. Start off by removing all the dead wood, as well as any canes that look diseased or discolored. This is also a good time to clean up around the base of the plant, removing any leaves and debris from the previous season. Never let dead or decaying material lay around the base of your roses as this is an invitation for pests and diseases.
Next, prune back any canes that overlap one another as these will compete for sun light once the leaves open up. Take the remaining canes and cut them back about one third of their current height. If you live in a colder climate, you might have to prune them back about halfway instead.
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