If you love roses but have run out of room in the borders, turn to the patio instead. Roses in containers are a much easier alternative to high-maintenance bedding plants
Pot-grown roses can be planted into patio containers at any time of the year, but around the end of February is a good time, as plants are just about to start into growth. Feb-Mar is the best time to plant bare-root roses, too.
TOP 5 ROSES FOR CONTAINERS
1) ‘Lady of Shalott’
Gorgeous orange-red chalice-shaped blooms produced throughout the summer. Hardy and robust.
2) ‘Ruby Anniversary’
It might be popular as a wedding anniversary gift, but this one puts on a dazzling show of ruby red flowers. Grows to 2ft (60cm). Supplier: www.roses.co.uk
Here’s something different. It’s a miniature climber, so needs to be given some sort of structure to grow into – a small obelisk that’ll sit within the container, perhaps. Pale yellow, scented flowers.
One for Terry Wogan fans, perhaps, this one’s a cluster rose with bright yellow, scented double blooms. Reaches 2.5ft (75cm). Supplier: www.classicroses.co.uk
5) ‘Katharina Zeimet’
Pure white blooms have a special attraction for rose lovers, and this one’s a cracker. Small double flowers on plants up to 2ft (60cm). Supplier: www.classicroses.co.uk
TIPS FOR PLANTING & CARE
First off, make sure your pot is deep enough as roses have long, deep roots; aim for a depth of at least 12in (30cm).
You’ll want the rose to be happy for many years, so make sure there are plenty of drainage holes, lots of crocks in the bottom, and fill it with a quality soil-based compost such as John Innes No3 with plenty of general fertiliser granules mixed in.
The compost in a glazed pot will dry out slower than that in a plain terracotta pot, and remember to provide a balanced liquid feed (once a fortnight in the summer months) to keep the leaves healthy and the flowers coming.