Growing roses in the desert of Arizona

by Ethel
I would love to grow roses in my yard, but I am afraid of the hot sun and the heat would do them in. My house is North South. Please help me if you have any ideas.
  8 answers
  • Jen Jen on Jul 27, 2015
    Whenever an old abandoned garden is found the one plant almost guaranteed to still be alive is a rose. They're really tough and as long as it's dry heat I say they're worth a try. Mulch well to conserve moisture (keep away from stem to avoid rot) or try underplanting with catmint - good companion planting plus it's tough as old boots and on the plus side bees love it. I'd recommend some of the old fashioned roses - something like a David Austin. I only ever water mine until they're established then they're on their own. Granted Melbourne, Australia isn't as hot as Arizona, but we get pretty hot weather in summer and it doesn't worry them. Good luck!
  • Debbie Bledsoe Debbie Bledsoe on Jul 27, 2015
    I have roses in Prescott Valley AZ. My *white* roses are in FULL Sun all day and they burn. I also have mini roses in the full sun and they do well. When we lived in PHX, the roses were planted in area where they did not get full sun ALL day. They did very well.
  • Sallie J. Eimstad Sallie J. Eimstad on Jul 27, 2015
    I successfully grew roses and chrysanthemums in the Mojave Desert about 45 miles from Death Valley. Amend 2 parts native soil with 1 part organic planting mix such as Kellogg Garden Soil or, if you have underlying heavy clay, Kellogg Amend, in your planting hole. Make the hole much deeper and wider than you would in a less challenging environment. DO NOT simply dig a hole and replace it with planting mix. It is critical that you use your native soil carefully mixed with the amendment product. I shredded black and white newspapers into about 1/2 inch wide strips and worked that in with the soil, some compostable kitchen waste and planting mix just to give worms a head start in the planting holes. Water the holes thoroughly until water percolates out of the holes slowly. When the water has percolated out but the holes are still thoroughly damp, spread your rose roots out over a mound of the mixture at the bottom of the holes. Then fill in with the mix up to the level the roses were in the pots or, if bare root, up to just below the graft. Gently tamp the soil in with your hands around the roots and in the holes until they are filled. Leave a slight depression across the planting holes so that water does not run off when applied to plants. Give the plants a little shade for a week or so with some shade cloth, screening, netting, or something similar. Then, water thoroughly and deeply when the top 3-4 inches of soil dry out unless the plants show signs of wilting, in which case you need to water right away. Do not yield to the temptation to water too frequently and shallowly and please, don't drown the plants. Happy gardening.
  • Cynthia Scheidt Cynthia Scheidt on Jul 27, 2015
    I have roses in my courtyard in Phoenix. They require a lot of water in the summer and they only bloom sporadically in the summer but the other seasons they bloom beautifully. The biggest difference is that the roses only last about 10 years here. My courtyard is on the north side of my house.
  • Gaylene Lienemann Stupic Gaylene Lienemann Stupic on Jul 27, 2015
    We rented a house in Albuquerque for a short time and virtually nothing was living in the yard except for three huge rose bushes, my favorite was a St. Joseph's Coat that smelled heavenly and made rose water that tasted delightful! A friend from Iraq gave me a recipe for cookies that called for rose water; now I'm hooked!
  • Reba Phillips Reba Phillips on Jul 27, 2015
    I had mine in a planter and moved it around until I found a spot it thrived in. You have to leave it a week or so to see. Mine liked a north and east exposure here in Mesa Arizona. :-)
  • Connie A Wallis Connie A Wallis on Jul 28, 2015
    I have roses in Tucson, and my house is north facing. I've had roses in the front and in the back (south facing). I would suggest either starting your roses in a pot until they are established or plant them under the eave close to a wall (not too close obviously ) so they will get some protection from the sun. Check with a local nursery to find a good variety for your area. Good luck!
  • Melodee Keays Melodee Keays on Jul 28, 2015
    Here in Australia we grow fantastic roses and the area where I live has very hot summers. Up to 50 degrees C/ 120 degrees F. Roses live a lime heavy soil. I hope this helps.