June for 2023 has been rather unique. We have seen great rain and cooler temperatures with a mix of Japanese Beetles. Even though we have had good rainfall, you will likely need to keep your irrigation running. Here are some common questions we get about watering.
How much water do my roses need? During the summer months, your rose garden needs about 5 gallons of water per rose weekly. There are many factors to determine how much your garden needs including soil texture, neighboring root systems & sun exposure. Keep an eye out for yellowing leaves at the base of your plant as a potential indicator for a watering issue. A sure test to see if your roses need water - dig down around the base of one of your roses and gather a handful of soil. Clench the soil in your fist to make it into a ball. If it squishes with water - you've got some time before your next watering. If it crumbles to pieces, your roses are ready for water.
What's the best method to water? We highly recommend drip irrigation or watering at the base (ground). Overhead watering with a sprinkler is not advisable, particularly where black spot is common.
It just rained a lot last week, do I still need to water? In NC and most other states, rainfall is a temporary solution for irrigation. Think of it as a side dish rather than an entrée - which is your irrigation system. If you get a nice steady rainfall, you could pause your irrigation, but remember to turn it back on within a day or 2 of the rain.
How much rain is enough rain to skip a water day? Rainfall is tricky. On average, 1 inch of rain = 5 gallons of water. However, you need to take into account how quickly the rain fell and the canopy your plant's leaves may have over the root system. Many times the rain does not seep into the roots because of an abundance amount of growth on the plant.
So, if you get a slow, steady rain of an inch or more, hit the pause on your irrigation. Just remember, this likely won't hold your roses for very long in the summer heat and you may be better off keeping your irrigation schedule.