Jude the Obscure roses were first bred in 1989 in the United Kingdom by David Austin. David is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading rose hybridizers and he specializes in shrub and climbing roses, many of which are part of his English Rose Collection. This particular rose was created by crossing the Abraham Darby rose with the Windrush rose. The result is a very gorgeous peach colored rose with light cream shades on the bottom of the petals.
The rose Jude the Obscure will produce blooms a little over 3 inches in diameter and they will have a very strong fragrance. These blooms will also be somewhat full with as many as 70 petals or so per bloom. The plant itself will stay fairly compact, only growing to about 4 feet tall at full maturity with a width that is similar to its height. The rose Jude the Obscure is highly resistant to diseases, which makes it a forgivable rose for newer growers who haven’t quite perfected their craft. Another great feature of this rose is that it is nearly thornless! This rose should do nicely in zones 5 through 10.
Growing the rose Jude the Obscure is not all that hard and if you have any past experience growing roses, then you should not find this one to be all that challenging. The most important choice you will make in the life of most of your roses is where in the garden you choose to grow them. Roses require a lot of sun light if you want them to perform well and this one is no exception. Try to select a location that gets a minimum of 6 to 8 hours each day of direct sun light, but more is even better!
You also will need to grow your Jude the Obscure roses in soil that drains very well. This is a relatively simple thing to do but I am always shocked at how many growers I see overlook this important aspect. Roses that are grown in poor soil will not only under-perform, but they often because weak and sickly and you will usually find yourself wondering what the problem is. Do yourself a favor and pick up a bag or two of a good soil mix designed for roses. In the long run, your rose Jude the Obscure will thank you for it!
Getting the rose Jude the Obscure into the ground is pretty straight forward and most growers can get this task done very well with just a few basic hand tools. How you go about planting your roses depends a little bit on how you purchased them. If you bought your rose from a local nursery, then they might have already had it planted for you in a container and ready to bloom. These are the easiest roses to plant. Dig your hole at least twice the diameter of the container and equally as deep. This will keep the bud union at its original depth while still giving you plenty of room around the roots for your soil mix.
If you bought your Jude the Obscure roses online, then there is a good chance they came to you as bareroot plants, which is not uncommon. You should first soak the roots of these overnight in a bucket of room temperature water, prior to planting day. Then dig your hole as wide as the longest roots and deep enough so that you can place the plant on top of a mound of soil while keeping the bud union no more than an inch or so below the surface.
Once you have your rose Jude the Obscure set in place, spread the roots out in all directions and then backfill the hole only half way to start, using your soil mix. Take your garden hose and water the loose soil heavily until it flows all over the roots like mud, then you can finish filling the hole the rest of the way. Give the soil one more heavy watering and be sure to top off any final settling that might occur, but do not tamp down the soil. This method should make sure that you don’t get any air pockets around the roots.
Taking care of the rose Jude the Obscure is not hard and once again any past experience you may have growing roses will sure come in handy here as well. You will need to make sure that you are providing your roses with enough water and nutrients while taking care not to overdo it. For most climates this usually amounts to about one deep watering per week, but if your climate is hot or dry, then you should check on your roses every couple of days to be safe.
You also should consider giving your Jude the Obscure roses a dose of a granular all-purpose fertilizer in the spring when the leaves begin to open. Like most of David’s creations, this one is also a repeat bloomer, which means it will benefit nicely from a few additional feedings over the course of the growing season. I will give my roses their second feeding right after they have finished the first big bloom, with a third feeding coming sometime in the middle of the summer to encourage late season flushes. Your rose Jude the Obscure should do nicely on this schedule as well.
You should prune the rose Jude the Obscure in the late winter or very early spring when your weather starts to warm but before the leaves begin to open. This will make pruning much easier. Start by cutting out all the dead and discolored canes from the plant and set the cuttings off to the side. Next, prune back any of the lateral canes that overlap one another so they do not compete for sun light once the leaves fully open. Lastly, give the remaining canes a cut back by about one third of their current height.
This is also the best time to rake up around your Jude the Obscure roses and clean up all the leaves and debris that often collects there. Throw all of this away in the trash with your cuttings. Never let dead matter lay around your roses as it can quickly turn into a breeding ground for various pests and diseases. Finish up your pruning by giving your rose Jude the Obscure a fresh new layer of mulch to start off the growing season.
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