thrip-affected-flowerCan you tell me what is causing these brown markings and illformed buds on my roses? – Michael

Around Australia, there’s hardy a rose bush that needs water yet!  However, when you water, are you OVERHEAD watering?  That will cause grief for the flowers – it’s inevitable when we get rain but you can avoid it by NOT overhead watering!

You’ll see flowers with those ugly outer markings after very hot / windy weather when thrip are carried on the wind … thrips are miniscule insects which bury deep into the rose petals – they make a particular mess of pale coloured blooms just like in the picture!

In cases where the flowers look as yours do, I generally recommend cutting them off and wait for the next round of flowers in 40-45 days!



This amazing Charles de Gaulle has around 12 buds on this stem- I find if I pick them too early the buds don’t open- should I de bud? – Pat


Hello Pat …. yes, I suppose you could dis-bud or de-bud the central flower but I rather leave them all so that I can always see a perfect bloom.  Once that bloom is finished, remove it and wait for the others to open.

Although CHARLES DE GAULLE is a HYBRID TEA rose,it has the flowering characteristics of a FLORIBUNDA (cluster flowering) rose with large heads of perfectly-formed, large HT shaped blooms.

It’s no wonder rose gardeners/enthusiasts are so frequently confused about the classification of roses and why we here at Silkies Rose Farm, prefer to call them BUSH ROSES or MODERN SHRUB ROSES as this prevents confusion!



My climbing roses are climbing great. But not too many roses.  They have reached the top.  I did pinch the buds out as you said in September, and give them all the seasol etc every two weeks plus I water, mulch etc.  The bush roses are treated the same and are great flowerers.  Am I doing something wrong?  They are very healthy, but not flowering Perplexed – Anne

Don’t be too perplexed as some climbers will set all their growth in the first year and forget about flowering while they’re growing so rampantly.  It can also be a reflection of really good conditions  – we have had great rains which releases stored nutrients from the soil.

Tie the canes – please don’t cut them!  Ease back perhaps on any high nitrogen fertilizer like Dynamic Lifter perhaps?  Up the application of a flower boosting fertilizer like PHOSTROGEN … (chemical fert but if you’re worried, it might promote flowering).  I would prefer to just let them do their thing!



9 Replies to “FAQ”

    1. The rose you’re looking for is either THE CHILDREN’S ROSE or CHILD’S LOVE … we carry both as standard specimens so I imagine you should be able to find them both at a specialist rose nursery in WA … best wishes … Diana

  1. Hi Donna, I just wanted to check what I should look for in a garden sprayer to apply my Eco-Seaweed, Eco-Neem, etc, as per the spraying recipe in your FABULOUS book. Do you recommend anything in particular? 🙂 Thanks!

    1. Hi Vanessa … I guess it depends on what quantity of spray you make to cover your roses / fruit trees / veggies, etc. … we use 50 litre sprayer which is battery operated and we can wheel it around the nursery – beaut little sprayer. When spraying weeds with SLASHER, we use a 10 litre back-pack sprayer with hand pump and it’s a beaut unit from SOLO … very high quality. Hope this is helpful … Diana

  2. Hi Diana,
    I am establishing a rose garden framing two sides of the house..no problem with north facing side but need a couple of recommendations for east side( up to 4 hours of morning sun only).
    Would love to have two rows of taller in the back and lower at the front.
    Love your website and the roses you grow!
    Also how many hours of sunlight would Renea rose need? And is there any climber that will do happily with just 5 hours of sunlight?
    Thank you very much

    1. Hi … the east side will be your challenge … how about you do a row of TALL BUSH / SHRUB ROSES but use something else which is low growing on the border because I don’t think ‘smaller’ roses will get much sun once you plant the taller specimens! Does that make sense?
      Although RENAE has extremely healthy foliage, I don’t think you’ll get enough flowers with less than 5 hours of direct sun … MME. A. CARRIERE would be fine, LAMARQUE, PINKIE, BANTRY BAY … all good in partial shade – there would be others too … do you have any ABSOLUTE specifications? Consider this: once the climber scrambles up, won’t it get more sunlight ??? Might be worth purchasing an established climbing rose NOW, planting it prior to winter so it gets lots of spring/summer sun to get it going and flowering! Hope this is helpful … Diana

  3. Hi Diana,
    I want to plant some climbing roses both sides of an east facing entrance with not much sun and wish to have them climbing all the way to the roof with lots of blooms preferably for the longest possible period. Fragrance and darker colours would be bonus.
    Thank you very much

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