The Gold Standard Rose award

The Gold Standard Rose award and common rose diseases

The Gold Standard Rose trials were established in 2004 by professional rose breeders through its professional organisation, BARB (the British Association of Rose Breeders).

BARB is a non-profit association, first established in 1973 to encourage, improve and extend the introduction and growing of new Rose varieties. It currently administers in excess of 700 protected rose varieties from some 35 different raisers of roses.

The trials are independently managed with each trial lasting for two years, based on information gathered from independent judges.

Varieties awarded the Gold Standard are assessed for Health, floriferousness, scent and commercial appeal and there are now 80 Gold Standard roses available to consumers.

Of the varieties Cants Roses have the following ‘Gold Standard Roses’:

Absolutely Fabulous, Alibaba, Bonica, Champagne Moment, Chandos Beauty, Dancing Queen, Easy Does It, Free Spirit, Gardener’s Glory, Golden Smiles, Hot Chocolate, Lancashire, Lovestruck, Penny Lane, Pink Perfection, Princess Anne, Rambling Rosie, Super Trouper, White Star and You’re Beautiful.

Common Rose Diseases and their prevention

Rust is fairly rare but can sometimes be a killer. It is most common in the south and west of the country.

Rust may appear as small, bright-orange powdery bumps on the underside of the leaf. Yellow-orange pustules appear in late summer on the undersides of the leaves, often matched by yellow spots on the upper surface. The pustules then turn black, and the whole leaf may die and fall early.

Rust, is more serious than Black Spot and Mildew.

Black Spot is sometimes mis-identified as. Purple Spotting, which is not a disease but can be caused by malnutrition.

Black Spot symptoms are dark spots with yellow edges, or more irregular dark blotches, visible on both sides of the leaf. Later, the leaves may turn yellow and fall early.

According to the Rose Society there is no cure so the best method is prevention. It advises burning all infected foliage and “good housekeeping” by removing soil that may be infected and replace it with well-rotted compost/manure as a mulch.

“The infection is spread by water droplets carrying the spores up from below and ultimately through the whole bush, a thick mulch will go some way towards keeping any infection left in the soil where it is.”

Pruning in spring will remove many of the overwintering spores and reduce infection.

Powdery Mildew is a fungus that can appear in both very dry and wet conditions. The symptoms appear mainly on the younger shoots. The leaves become distorted and puckered, and buds fail to open. A greyish, powdery deposit appears on the leaves, stems or buds, and can turn the whole shoot a dirty white.

It can be worse in dry spells or where there is poor air circulation and while it may not kill roses it does affect their appearance.

Gardening jobs for the month

You can continue to plant bare root roses during open weather.  If you can plant this month it is better than leaving to March, as the root system establishes before pruning.

Plan ahead by purchasing your fertilisers ready for feeding next month after pruning.

Buy sprays ready for spraying the plants. After pruning in March you will be ready prepared. Once you have approximately 15-20 cm (6-8”) new growth which will probably not be until sometime in April start your spraying programme. Repeat spraying around 14 days intervals, some products will indicate 21 days.

Once established the more modern varieties have better resistance to disease but we do recommend a preventative spraying programme.

Remember a hard pruned, well fed rose will have a greater resistance to disease.

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