Explore Plants

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 

Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
1 rating

Friday - October 09, 2009

From: Conroe, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives, Compost and Mulch, Transplants, Shrubs
Title: Non-blooming climbing rose in Conroe, TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a climbing rose and it has never bloomed and has no thorns, it was a cutting from another rose bush. I have given it water and fertilize and have mulch around it also.

ANSWER:

The first thing we think of when a plant is not blooming well is that it is getting too much fertilizer, especially too much high nitrogen fertilizer, such as lawn fertilizers. The high nitrogen encourages lots of green leaves, which you want in grasses, but not blooms. If it was a cutting and has not been in the ground long, it simply may not have developed to sufficient maturity to bloom quite yet. The last possibility is that it is not getting enough sun. Roses, whether they are native or non-native, require full sun, which we regard as 6 or more hours of sun a day.

Since we are already at the end of the blooming season for  most roses, we suggest you stop fertilizing, perhaps do a little pruning of dead ends or spindly stems. Then, in January or February, prune it back hard, again taking out any dead wood and leaving the living stems no more than 12 to 18 inches tall. If it is not getting sufficient sun, that would be a good time to transplant it, when the plant is semi-dormant. And still don't fertilize, as a transplanted plant is under stress and you should never fertilize a stressed plant. You can certainly amend the soil where the rose is being transplanted, adding compost or other organic material for good drainage, permitting the roots to get their water and nutrients from the soil. 

 

More Shrubs Questions

Will hybrid Tecoma stans attract hummingbirds from Glendale AZ
July 07, 2012 - We bought a bells of fire plant; would like to know if hummingbirds like them?
view the full question and answer

Plants for steep slope in California
February 21, 2010 - I have steep slope, southwestern facing, minimal shade in Southern California. The soil is rocky. Because of fire danger, I would rather not plant grasses. Do you have a suggestion?
view the full question and answer

Wet adapted plants for Virginia Beach VA
June 28, 2013 - I live in Virginia Beach, VA on Lynnhaven waterway (leads into Chesapeake bay, but at my point is more brackish). I've recently removed/contained bamboo with concrete and metal barriers and now want...
view the full question and answer

Plants for a sandy slope at a weekend cabin in central WI.
June 30, 2009 - I have a cabin in central Wisconsin where the soil is equivalent to a sandy beach. There are some areas that are nearly impossible to mow because of how steep the incline is. Could you recommend som...
view the full question and answer

Information on various plants from Alamo TX
November 15, 2009 - Have you heard of the following plants: Butterfly Iris,Compact Nanpina, Red Dwarf Turks? I would like to know some details on the above plant: size, flowers?, drought tolerant, where to plant Thanki...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.