Q.Knockout roses have no leaves this spring
Knockout roses have no leaves this spring. Last year they where filled out with leaves. My Knockout roses are now 4 years old (Zone 6) and they have grown so beautifully in the past 4 yrs. – going from 1.5′ tall to over 5 foot tall. Two KO rose trees grew to over 8 foot tall.
This year I notice they have no leaves on them at all and this same time last year they where filled with new leaves all over. I have probably 8 of them total. Only a couple have leaves forming along the very bottom of the plant (not normal). It’s like those two roses are just brand new plants beginning to take off and not established. I have also had 2 Cherry trees that have leaves but did not bloom this year. And a huge Holly tree that is now brown and leaves are falling off! Holly tree is probably 15 yrs old and never had a day’s problem with it until now.
Could the weather be the culprit? We had some warmer days back in Feb. then it turned off really cold (below zero). It is now mid April and I am worried about my plants. Any suggestions? Thank you.
I do believe it is weather related. Also if it was a cold, dry and windy winter for you, it could have been a lack of water too. The wind sucks the moisture up out of the ground quickly and if we do not winter water when we can, things just get way too dry. From the warm to cold cycles you had described I think that is the main culprit thought. In my area of Northern Colorado, we have many years where we have to prune most of the rosebushes down to within an inch or two of the ground! Amazingly most come back with great vigor and bloom very nicely with some good food and water.
Thank you for your help. The pic of the rose I sent still has no new leaf or anything. Some others I have do have new growth but only at the very bottom. I will do like you said and cut them all way back. They where just beautiful last yr. I am sad to see them go. Do you think it is a disease or weather that caused this problem. Thank you again.
From the photo provided, things do not look good. If you do not have leaves starting by now in your area and you have had consistent 50 degree or better nights, then there is a problem. Indeed the weather can be the culprit. Especially when we have those strings of nice warm days too early and then it turns frigid cold again for several days. That will kill a rosebush quickly. If you do see some growth out of the main trunk of the rosebushes, pruned out all the upper and now dead canes. The lower growth should come on back and build the bushes up again. If no growth at all, it is time to dig them out and plant some new bushes. Take a look at the Homerun rosebushes by Weeks Roses. They are even more hardy than Knockout and more disease resistant too. Not to mention a brighter bloom color.