Spring is well and truly here and roses everywhere are blooming. As we know, roses go dormant during the cooler months, and in doing so, they pull nutrients back from the leaves into the plant and store them in the roots. The first flush of leaves in Spring is essentially driven by stored nutrients, so from now on the plant needs to take up new nutrients from the soil.
Roses should be feed regularly – at least once in each season – especially if you want to get lots of flowers and repeated blooms. Roses love an organic-based fertiliser with a good level of potassium. Potassium is critical, as a lack results in weak stems and shoots as well as flowers which are more susceptible to stress and disease.
Low potassium can be spotted by those reddy brown spots, and the edges of the leaves tend to become almost dry and brittle. Additionally, low potassium means the plants are unable to take up a whole range of other nutrients because potassium is really critical for nutrient uptake, so not having enough potassium will actually lead to limitations of other nutrients.
So how do you get your roses to perform at their best?
Beginning its life in 1996 as a specialist commercial fertiliser (initially simply called Virginia Mix) for growing potatoes and onions in the Adelaide Plains, Neutrog was approached by the then President of the South Australian Rose Society, Mr Kelvin Trimper who had trialled the original potato product on his own roses, to ascertain our interest in making some subtle changes to the product formula.
Over the next 3 years, numerous trials of various formulas were undertaken with members of the South Australian Rose Society along with commercial rose growers. These were carried out involving in excess of 20,000kgs of product…enough to feed 200,000 roses!
The resultant product combined the best of both worlds – its organic base provided a full range of plant nutrients in a slow release form, whilst boosted levels of water-soluble nutrients such as potassium, iron and magnesium optimised the performance of each application. It contained all the nutrients required to grow roses, and no other nutrient supplements or applications were required. Most significantly the ratio of potassium to nitrogen was such that it made the product formula ideal for application on all flowering plants, not just roses.
In 2000, this product was named Sudden Impact for Roses. It was endorsed by the South Australian Rose Society in 2001, and was subsequently launched in the same year at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens.
Sudden Impact for Roses has since been endorsed by nearly every Rose Society/Group around Australia and numerous others overseas. It is also used by most major rose gardens around Australia including Flemington Racecourse Rose Garden, Morwell Rose Garden, Mornington Rose Garden, International Rose Garden, Araluen etc.
To put it all in some perspective, last year in excess of 15,000,000 roses were fed with Sudden Impact for Roses.
Sudden impact for Roses is available at Bunnings, various other hardware outlets and of course good garden centres.