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What you need
  • Shovel
  • Bone meal
  • Wood dowel
  • Mulch
Choosing a quality rose is of paramount importance. The better the rose you start with, the more vigorous and successful it will be. If you are unable to plant the rose immediately, it's best to heel it in until you are ready to plant. Start by soaking the rose in a bucket of water overnight. This will re-hydrate any water deficits that have developed and assist the rose in getting off to a good start.
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Dig a hole that is twice as wide and twice as deep as the roots are long. If you have very heavy soil, add some compost or manure to the soil to improve drainage and encourage crumbling.
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Mix a cup of bone meal into some of the soil you removed, and form a mound with it in the bottom of the hole.
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Place the rose in the hole and spread the roots out over the mound. How deep you plant the rose will depend on what zone you are in. In zones 6-10, the bud union should be about an inch above the soil surface. In zones 5 and under, it's a good idea to bury the bud union an inch or so under the soil surface. Use a wood dowel or the handle of a shovel to gauge the proper depth.
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Next, backfill all of the soil into the hole. There is no need to tamp down the soil. Water will take care of compacting the soil as it drains. Make sure all the roots are covered with at least 3 inches of soil or root suckers will be a problem.
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Make a water catching moat around the planting area and fill it up with water. Let the water drain out and repeat the process 2 or 3 times until drainage slows.
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Once the soil has drained sufficiently, mulch the planting area to a depth of 2-3 inches with bark mulch or compost. The mulch will keep the soil from drying out.