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Raised beds for roses

Arosebyanyother
January 12, 2019

I live in an area with heavy clay, so im building 6 4ftx24ftx9in raised beds for my roses (Two already complete). They’ve already been in raised beds, but I’m a novice and they've outgrown their Boxes. Obviously that’s a lot of soil. I’m trying to decide what would be a good mix that’s economical. Would a 50/50 sand compost be ok? Do I need topsoil? My old boxes were 100 percent compost, I realize now that was a bad idea lol. Thank y’all for any help. :)

Comments (7)

  • annpat

    9 inches deep? Your rose roots are not going to be content in 9 inches of anything.

    Also, if you're a novice, how did you decide that your soil is "heavy clay"? Novices often mistake the quality of their soil.

    Were your roses growing in a 9" deep container before, and if so, did they have access to soil under the raised beds?


    Arosebyanyother thanked annpat
  • gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

    A raised bed without any solid bottom is just the same as planting in the ground. So you need regular garden soil, aka topsoil, amended with compost or composted manure to your degree of preference.

    And it is always a good idea to integrate the soil underlying the raised bed with what is used to fill it to avoid interface issues. Doesn't need much - just a loosening or a thorough scraping of the existing ground soil.

    Arosebyanyother thanked gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)
  • Arosebyanyother

    Ann, my rose have been growing in 11inch beds. I’m going from fence boards to landscape timbers, so just a two inch drop. I’m in zone 9b, around Houston. This is my 3rd year with my roses. My first year get we’re all in the ground in the hard clay and I never amended the soil so they all suffered. Last year I put them in the raised boxes and they have been much happier, but the boxes are only 2ft wide, onviously they need some more room. They do have access to the soil underneath the bed. :)

  • annpat

    I probably shouldn't have commented, because I'm not much of a rose grower. I thought they'd like a much deeper root zone.

    Arosebyanyother thanked annpat
  • Arosebyanyother

    Ann,

    The roots do go deeper, if the box was closed at the bottom they would definitly need at least 2ft of box height. raising them is just to help with drainage. My native soil doesnt drain lol. so 50/50 top soil and compost in stead of sand?

  • gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)

    You don't need that much compost. More than 25% organic matter is considered excessive. And it will shrink down a lot as well. You can always mulch with more compost once the roses get established.

    Arosebyanyother thanked gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)
  • Arosebyanyother

    Okay thank you

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