Q. When should I stop feeding my roses for the season?
A. Traditionally, the CR manual recommends we stop feeding roses around the middle of August. We don’t want new growth to form and then be killed by early frosts is the reasoning for this rule.
However, I know top exhibitors who continue to feed liquid type fertilizers every week before a rose show in autumn.
I suppose the response should be that if a major rose show is approaching and the exhibitor wants to enter roses, they should feed liquid fertilizer up until the week before the show for maximum color in the blooms and fabulous foliage.
~ Pat Horbelt
A. Since fertilizing roses encourages new growth, it is best to stop fertilizing roses in the middle of August. The only exception would be giving a light fertilizing of liquid fertilizer such as Mills Easy Feed by September 1st. The liquid fertilizer is an instant fertilizer and goes directly to the feeder roots.
The purpose of stopping a fertilizing program is easy to understand—should there be an early freeze, the new growth would be damaged and possibly damage the rose bush. Heavy fertilizing should be done in April, June, and august.
~ Norma Kemp