History of Blushing Knockout Roses:
The Knockout Blushing rose was first bred in 2005 by William Radler and offered by Conard-Pyle Co. William Radler created the amazing line of Knockout roses which are known the world over for their hardiness, beautiful blooms, and high resistance to diseases. This particular Knockout rose is actually a sport of the Radrazz rose which was found by the Yoder Brothers out of Pennsylvania. The Blushing Knockout is a somewhat compact rose that has a mounded and bushy habit and it only grows to about 4 feet or so high with a similarly sized spread.
The blooms on Blushing Knockout roses are smaller in size, averaging anywhere from 2.5 inches to 3.5 inches in diameter and they are of a subtle shade of pink. They bloom in clusters ranging from 1 to 5 blooms per cluster. Like most of the Knockout line of roses, the Blushing has a very good resistance to diseases and it is hardy in zones 5 through 10.
The Blushing Knockout is a great rose for borders and it fits wonderfully into most landscaping ideas. You can also use this rose for a nice low level hedge if you plant multiple ones side by side along the edge of your property.
Growing Blushing Knockout Roses:
Growing the Blushing Knockouts couldn't be easier and these are some great roses for beginning gardeners who want to get into growing roses. The first thing you need to do is find a home for this beauty somewhere in your garden. This rose will bloom continuously starting in spring and continue through to the first frost.
What that means is you will need to find a place for it that gets a lot of sun light. Blushing Knockout roses can survive in shady places, but the blooms will be much sparser and isn't that the whole point of growing roses in the first place? A good rule of thumb is to find a location that gets at least 6 to 8 hours each day of continuous sun light.
The other thing you will need to consider is how well the soil drains. While Blushing Knockouts may be a little more forgiving than some roses, no rose like to grow in soil that stays soaking wet for days on end. If you are not sure about your existing garden soil, read the next section on a great way to amend it for growing roses.
Planting Blushing Knockout Roses:
Now that you've chosen the perfect spot for your Blushing Knockouts, you need to get them into the ground. Before you start digging however, I highly recommend that you swing by the local garden center and pick up a bag of organic compost. No matter how good your garden soil may be, it can always be a little better and this stuff is great for roses and most plants.
When you dig up the soil, mix some of the compost in with it at a ratio of 2 parts soil to 1 part compost. Your roses will absolutely love it and it just gives them an added boost when you first plant them.
Now if you got your Blushing Knockout roses as bareroot plants, then you will need to dig the hole plenty wide enough to fit the roots without forcing them into the hole. You will also need to dig the hole deep enough so that you can mound up some of your new soil mix in the center of the hole, and still keep he bud union about an inch or two below the surface of the soil.
Set your bareroot in the hole on top of a mound of soil, and spread the roots outward and down the sides of the mound. Take your new soil mix with the compost and back fill the hole about halfway and then give it a nice heavy watering until the loose soil is almost like mud. You can then go ahead and back fill the hole the rest of the way and water it again. What you are doing is making sure that the roots are completely covered and that no air pockets have formed.
If you got your Blushing Knockouts locally, then they probably came in a container already established and all you need to do is dig a hole and set the plant in. I usually will dig a hole that is at least twice the diameter of the container, and equally as deep. This gives the plant plenty of fresh soil surrounding it to grow roots into, and it also keeps the bud union at the same depth it was originally planted at.
Caring for Blushing Knockout Roses:
Your Blushing Knockouts are going to be pretty tolerant of drought like conditions, but that doesn't mean that you won't have to pay attention to them. A good rule of thumb is usually one deep watering per week, even if Mother Nature isn't cooperating with you.
You can also feed your Blushing Knockout roses with an all-purpose, granular fertilizer. I prefer to stay away from the liquid chemical fertilizers as I've discovered they too easily burn many varieties of roses. Feed your roses in early spring just as the leaves start to open up. Since this is a repeat blooming rose, you might want to give them another dose as the first big bloom starts to form, and then one more in mid-summer to promote additional blooms later in the growing season.
Pruning Blushing Knockout Roses:
Pruning your Blushing Knockouts is a piece of cake and only takes a few minutes. Start off by getting rid of all the dead wood, as well as any canes that look sick or diseased in the early spring before the leaves have formed. You should also take time to clean up any dead leaves and debris from around the base of your roses as these will inevitably invite pests and diseases to your plants. Always throw away clippings, never let them lay or toss them into the compost pile.
Next, start cutting back any lateral canes that overlap one another as these will eventually compete for sun light once the leaves open up. You can then cut back any remaining canes about one-third of their current height. In colder climates you may have to cut them back as much as halfway.
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