Don Juan Roses, Winter Care

Anonymous added on June 23, 2017 | Answered

I recently asked about losing all the old canes on my Don Juan Roses but vigorous new canes in the spring. Your answer was very thought provoking in a good way. You felt I was probably preparing them OK but suggested a lighter colored covering. I thought your response re why cover them was particularly interesting and had never had it explained that way. Some time ago I started using a product called "better than burlap". It is not much darker than burlap but has a "very" close weave. My Dons are more open than anything else I protect. They get direct sun for at least 8 hours in the winter and with the way our weather is changing dramatically I wonder if they do not get enough airflow and trapping the days heat through the night and on to heat the next day. The past few winters since I originally planted the Dons we have experienced spring weather for a week at a time during the winter and this spring summer and then back to winter. Originally I was concerned that burlap would leave them too exposed. I would appreciate your thoughts and wonder what you do or would use. Thanks Ray Kent

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on June 24, 2017

I would use either the burlap or a light colored, white preferably, fabric that will allow the good air flow. Those tricky warm times in the middle of winter have caused many a rose problem! We just have to do the best we can a keeping them cold when they are supposed to be cold. Maybe even using some large umbrellas to shade them during those warm mid winter times. I have been know to do just that to keep them shaded and thus cooler that without it.

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