How to Winterize Knockout Roses

Written by kimberly johnson
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How to Winterize Knockout Roses
(David De Lossy/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Knockout roses are a favoured rose variety because they are hardy and resistant to disease and pests. In addition, they are a repeat blooming variety of rose, which produces blooms from spring through fall. However, even though Knockout roses are hardy, it is still important to protect them from cold winter temperatures. Plan to winterise Knockout roses just before the first frost in your area, when the plants begin to enter winter dormancy.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Shovel
  • Chicken wire
  • Tin snips
  • Twist ties
  • Mulch
  • Burlap
  • String
  • Rope

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  1. 1

    Stop fertilising and pruning Knockout rose bushes in the late summer in northern climates, and in early fall in the southern climates. This allows the Knockout rose bush to start transitioning into a dormant state.

  2. 2

    Dig up soil from another part of the yard and mound it up around the base of the Knockout rose bush until it is 8 to 10 inches up the stem. You can also purchase potting soil to use.

  3. 3

    Cut a piece of chicken wire, or other metal caging material, using tin snips so that it is large enough to wrap around the bush and leave a distance of 4 to 6 inches between the plant and the wire. Wrap the wire around the plant and secure the free edges with twist ties.

  4. 4

    Spread a 3- to 4-inch layer of mulch around the base of the Knockout rose bushes inside the wire to protect the root systems from cold winter temperatures.

  5. 5

    Put on gardening gloves and gently gather the long stems of the Knockout rose bush loosely together. Tie a piece of string around the canes to hold them together. The string should not be tight.

  6. 6

    Wrap a piece of burlap around the entire exposed section of the bush, including the top. If the rose bush is small, you can turn a burlap bag upside down and slip it over the bush. If the bush is larger, wrap it with burlap fabric.

  7. 7

    Tie three pieces of rope around the outside of the burlap to secure it. Place one piece near the top, one in the middle and one near the bottom of the rose bush.

Tips and warnings

  • Remove the burlap and string in the spring when temperatures rise above freezing.

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