How to Plant a Rose Garden in the High Desert

If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.


Most recently the weather in the high desert has been overcast with light showers. Some folks despise working during inclement weather, postponing outdoor activities until a brighter more radiant day. However, I have found that working in shower conditions has proven beneficial!

The High Desert has a lot of thick red clay for soil. Working with this type of soil in the heat and attempting to dig holes for plants is extremely difficult. The soil is compacted, with rocks, and it is often hard to remove. Working shortly after or during a light drizzle, loosens up the soil offering easy soil removal. I managed to remove the soil in my backyard with ease, as though it was loose organic matter from the East Coast.

The first part of preparation was already halfway prepared by my dog who likes to dig holes in the backyard. My pre-arranged hole was about three inches deep. I needed to dig out a hole at least 10-12 inches depending on your rose bush root ball.

I added Miracle Grow Garden Soil, specifically for “roses”, which holds moisture, to protect from overwatering or underwatering, and offers free earthworms in each bag! I was actually ecstatic when I found out there were worms in the bag. Earthworms offers oxidation to the soil and nutrients, never kill or get rid of earthworms they are always beneficial for plants. Miracle Grow Garden Soil for Roses also includes bone meal to help your plant grow big beautiful blooms. I went ahead and also added three additional items to the soil to help with cell proliferation.

The first item I added was Vigoro Bold Blooms Flowering Plant Food, which helps promote lush foliage and maximizes the number of blooms. My mother always told me that I needed to feed my plants food. This bag offers time released nitrogen for extended feeding periods. I then added another time release plant food known as Osmocote, this product offers 11 fortified essential nutrients for all types of flowers. Lastly, I sprinkle a bit of Miracle Grow powder feeder to get optimum results. The next time I water my roses the plant will have a blend of nutritious food to thrive off of. Lastly, I want to add that I blend all products in the soil as well as place a little bit on top.

If you live in an area that offers rich nutritious soil you might not have to work as hard to get your flowers to thrive and bloom. I have found working with the Mojave Desert soil needs a little extra help to get roses to flourish and thrive.

The roses I planted were purchased from Home Depot (I am not affiliated with Home Depot). I purchased two Hybrid Iceberg Roses (White blooms), these flowers are found all over Southern California and they tend to enjoy the winter as well as the Sun. I planted them in an area that would get around 6 hours of sunlight before my retaining wall will start to cast over a shadow, protecting the flowers from direct sunlight. I also purchased one Peace Everblooming Hybrid Tea Rose bush (Golden yellow blooms with rose pink edges), these flowers survive the high desert winters and overcome most mold and viruses. Lastly I purchased one Sun Flare Rose bush (Yellow blooms). I figured the Peace Hybrid Tea Roses paired with the yellow Sun Flare Roses would make a good combination once displayed in a vase indoors. The Sun Flare roses thrive during early to late summer and fully enjoy direct sunlight. I planted the Sun Flares directly in the center of my garden where most of the sun rays will be beaming down on them.

That completes the full process of properly planting roses in the high desert. It mostly consists of properly caring and prepping your soil prior to planting them. If you have a similar climate, or would like to share some of your suggestions, please let me know in the comments down below. Please remember to subscribe to my blog to continue to receive email notifications of new postings!

Until next time!

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