Landscaping with knockout roses

Is Knockout Rose Down for the Count?

Enough color to knock your socks off — that’s ‘Knockout’ rose. Photo by Steve Bender.

Introduced in 2000, ‘Knockout’ rose quickly became the best-selling landscape plant in the country. It had everything — showy, continuous blooms; compact growth habit; tough-as-nails constitution; and, best of all, no need to spray for black spot disease. But now, nature has tossed green kryptonite into Superman’s garden. And ‘Knockout’ rose may just get its bell rung.

A Deadly Threat ‘Knockout’ rose (the original single red, shown above, plus a bunch of newer colors) owes its uber-popularity to the belief that it’s the first “no maintenance” rose — perfect for the lazy gardener in all of us. People think it needs no watering, spraying, pruning, or fertilizing — EVER. It’s like an actual living plastic plant. You just stick it in the ground and it will bloom, bloom, bloom with zero care from you. How marvelous.

Unfortunately, this belief is dead wrong. ‘Knockout’ does need water, fertilizer, and pruning. And now it’s facing a disease so serious that its very survival is in question. Rose rosette disease.

Image zoom emRose rosette disease. Photo:

This is what rose rosette looks like and it’s not pretty. A formally healthy plant starts producing Medusa-like bunches of bright-red new shoots. The shoots bloom, but the flowers look distorted. As rose rosette spreads through the plant, the rose gradually dies back, until it completely croaks. Down for the count.

What Causes Rose Rosette? Rose rosette is caused by a virus first discovered in the western U.S. around 1940. The virus is principally spread by tiny eriophyid mites — so tiny, in fact, that they literally blow into gardens on the wind. When they feed on a rose, they transmit the virus. At that point, the jig is just about up.

Now here’s a surprise. There was a time when rose rosette was considered a savior, not a plague. Any of you remember the infamous “living wall,” aka the multiflora rose? A vigorous, arching import from Japan, it produced pretty white flowers in spring and thousands of small, bright-red rose hips in fall. It grew so thickly that highway departments in the East and Midwest actually planted rows of it down highway medians. Even a tractor-tractor couldn’t smash through. Cattlemen also used it to contain cattle.

But you know what they say about good intentions. Birds ate the red rose hips and spread multiflora rose everywhere. It proved to be an awful, noxious weed. States banned it, but it was too late. The entire eastern U.S. was destined to be smothered by the stuff, unless a control could be found.

It was. Rose rosette disease.

Wahoooo!!! Rose rosette killed multiflora rose faster than a van filled with nuns kills a good kegger. Unfortunately, when rose rosette ran out of multiflora roses, it looked for something else to feast on. The target? ‘Knockout’ rose and other shrub roses. The first ‘Knockout’ roses to show symptoms were located where the highest concentrations of multiflora roses were growing — the East and Midwest. ‘Knockout’ roses in the South have it now too.

Can Anything Stop Rose Rosette? Because rose rosette is caused by a virus, it eventually spreads internally to every part of the plant. Promptly removing the bright-red shoot clusters by cutting through healthy green wood below them may save a rose. But once a rose gets full-blown rose rosette, turn out the lights. You must pull up the rose, roots and all, bag it, and throw it out with the trash. Spraying will not work.

Conard-Pyle, the respected Pennsylvania nursery that introduced ‘Knockout’ roses, suggests pruning back the plants by 2/3 while they’re dormant in late winter to remove any overwintering mites and eggs in the bud crevices. This is especially important for large landscape plantings of ‘Knockout,’ because the more bushes you have, the more mites you have, and it’s easier for the virus to spread.

Now For Some Really Bad News According to Grumpy’s sources, most rose species and their selections are vulnerable to rose rosette — not just ‘Knockout.’ So if your love your roses, keep your eyes peeled for weird-looking, bright red shoots. Don’t leave yourself open to a ‘Knockout’ punch.

Knock Out Roses

The Knock Out is an easy-care rose that produces flowers nonstop from spring through fall. It’s easy to grow in a wide range of soils, it’s disease resistant, and it’s self-cleaning — meaning no deadheading!
Produced by the Department of Communications at Kansas State University. For more information, visit our website at:

Knock Out Roses

Roses have long been one of the favorite garden plants. Properly cared for, they’ll provide color all season long – from mid May up until past frost. There’ve been changes in how we grow roses.
Traditionally, we planted what we call hybrid tea roses, which are grown for large, showy flowers. Today, though, most people plant what we call easy care or shrub roses. The most famous of those shrub roses is this one I’m standing by called the Knock Out rose. The Knock Out roses came on the market a few years ago and they were touted for their disease resistance and free flowering. They come in pinks, reds, and various colors.
If you go in and deadhead the Knock Out roses, or the easy-care roses during the growing season, you may get a few more flowers, and also keep the plant looking a little more clean and neat. On the other hand, if you’re a low maintenance, less fussy gardener, you wouldn’t remove the blooms. You’d just let them cycle in and out throughout the growing season.
Many types of these easy care roses will also produce a hip or a seed that can be interesting during the winter months. If you want to let those develop, you probably don’t want to deadhead your roses much after the first part of August, because that then gives that last flush of bloom time to develop a seed head.
So, when you go to prune a Knock Out rose, or an easy-care rose, you’ll basically look for where the blooms are spent. Then, you’ll trace down to a nice, healthy bud or another leaf junction, and just cut and remove it from the plant. That will signal the plant to send out a new burst of growth, and a new flower a few weeks down the road. You can go in during the summer months and cut out the dead blooms, or just leave them. The plant doesn’t care. These easy care roses are bred to bloom, and to perform all season long for you to enjoy in your garden.
This feature story prepared with Dennis Patton, Kansas State University Research and Extension Horticulture Agent, Johnson County.

Roses – Modern Garden Roses and Old Garden Roses

Take Time to Smell the Roses

Now with easy-to-grow varieties!

No other plant can compare to the rose for its long bloom time, extensive range of colors and sizes and exquisite fragrances. Roses come in every size, shape and color and there is always a perfect variety for every situation.

Many people love to admire roses in other people’s yards, but don’t want to take the time that many types of roses demand.

Now, there are great new roses that look beautiful, bloom prolifically, smell wonderful, are disease resistant AND low maintenance.

Jobe’s Landscape can assist you in selecting the right varieties for your location in the Rehoboth Beach, Lewes, Bethany Beach, Ocean View, Lewes, Milford & Milton, Sussex County, Delaware area. Designing your landscape with roses will give you a continuity of bloom and beauty for formal, semi-formal and informal settings. There are even ideal varieties for planting in containers, using for a ground cover or as a hedge.

Whether your needs are for residential or commercial properties, the vast array of roses will definitely provide one that is appropriate.

Although a true rose classification system can be extensive, here is one that will give you a general understanding of the types and their uses. Two broad categories exist – Modern Garden Roses and Old Roses.

Modern Garden Roses

This type began with the hybrid tea introduction. The hybrid tea was widely accepted because it bloomed more than one time during the season. The hybrid tea goes through “flushes”, re-blooming every 4-6 weeks through the growing season.

  • Shrub roses – varieties range from 3 feet to 10 feet high, most are usually taller than most rose “bushes” and make great specimen plants in the landscape. Many bloom continuously from late spring until first frost. This group is broken down even further.
  • Ground cover roses – these are ideal for covering larger areas of ground, slopes or banks for masses of color or for the front of the perennial border.
  • Bush roses – usually known as “hybrid tea” roses, the bush roses are ideal for cultivation in groups and popular in “formal” rose gardens. They usually produce one flower per stem and are the type that we know as “long-stemmed” roses. Many of the hybrid teas are the type that do require more care and maintenance.
  • Floribunda roses – a bush rose with a mass of flowers in clusters on each stem, ideal in the landscape and perennial border – very showy and free flowering.
  • Polyantha roses – small double flowers born in large clusters with leaves small than the Floribunda.
  • Miniature roses – ideal for the front of the border or in pots, these have miniature flowers, foliage and growth.
  • Climbing roses – this group includes both climbers and rambler are ideal for scrambling up trees, along fences or walls. The difference between a climber and a rambler is the thickness of the canes – climbers are stiffer than the ramblers.

Old Roses

Roses have been grown for centuries and these older types are known for their very heavy fragrance and romantic cupped shape. One flower will fill an entire room with its perfume. Additionally, the old roses usually bloom just once during the season, like tulips or peonies or many other perennial flowers.

    New category of roses:

  • David Austin English Roses
  • This new class combines the heavy fragrance and cupped shape of old roses with the repeat blooming of the hybrid tea. The English roses are magnificently beautiful and should be included in most every landscape.
  • Seaside Roses, called Rugosa roses love the sea air and salt spray and grow fantastically well in our beach areas.

Do you think roses are too hard to grow? Today, there are some varieties that are highly disease resistant and very easy to grow. No regular spraying schedules of toxic pesticides and fungicides. Our plant experts will help you plan, select, plant and care for your new rose plants that will provide years of pleasure.

Landscaping with Knock Out Roses

As a landscape designer and garden center employee, I am constantly asked to suggest plants that bloom all summer. My first suggestion is always shrub roses, specifically Knock Out roses. Introduced in 2000, these roses changed the game by boasting little to no deadheading, continual blooms for up to nine months, and resistance to common rose pests and diseases. Seventeen years later, new varieties of these low maintenance, reliable bloomers have become very common in the landscape.

Brighter Blooms Nursery specializes in Knock Out roses and other highly sought after, unique plants. Upon delivery, their 1-3 gallon potted Knock Out roses are ready to be planted and provide immediate blooms in your landscape.

Knock Out roses grow well in full sun to part shade in U.S. zones 5-10. Once established, they have proven to be quite drought resistant. While they are known to be self-cleaning, it may be necessary to prune or deadhead them sometimes, just to keep them looking their best. However, gardeners need not fear the task of cutting these roses, as they recover quickly from pruning mistakes. Low maintenance does not mean no maintenance; all roses benefit from regular fertilizing. Knock Outs will look their best when fertilized monthly or bi-monthly with a well-balanced rose food.

Knock Out roses can play several roles in the landscape. They serve well as foundation plantings, colorful border plants, low hedges or even specimen plants. Because of their continual blooming, Knock Out roses often provide some of the only color in the garden between spring- and summer-blooming plants, or as summer flowers fade and plants are just beginning to turn their autumn hues. For this reason, they are often mixed into flower beds. Whether a formal bed or cottage garden style, Knock Out roses seem a perfect fit. They even attract bees, butterflies and hummingbirds for pollinator friendly gardens.

Growing 4-7 feet tall and 2-3 feet wide, they can unique height to flower gardens. Knock Out rose shrubs make excellent specimen plants in formal gardens, especially when centered in a circular bed and ringed with tidy, low mounding plants such as Artemisia, dianthus, coral bells or hosta. Knock Out roses also make excellent potted patio plants. For a pleasant, relaxing scent, Sunny Knock Out roses are oftentimes planted near patios, or frequently opened windows where a gentle breeze can carry their sweet scent. Sunny Knock Out roses grow to 3-4 feet tall and wide; therefore, they can easily fit into many locations where their bright yellow flowers will stand out.

Knock Out roses can be single or double flowers. They come in red, pink, yellow and white, with each of the available hues nicely complementing each other. You can stick with one color or add variety with several. In landscaping, white is oftentimes used to draw the eye, brighten up a dark space or as a neutral color. White Out roses are a nice addition to monochromatic gardens. Also growing 3-4 feet tall and wide, they pop out against bright or dark colored houses when used as foundation plantings. As plants that can grow in part shade, Knock Out roses of any color can be excellent border plants for yards that edge woodlands.

The above article was sponsored by Brighter Blooms Nursery. The information contained in this article may contain ads or advertorial opinions.

Thread: Rosa Rugosa or Knock Out roses – do honey bees like them?

Quick Navigation Nectar & Pollen Plants Top

  • Site Areas
  • Settings
  • Private Messages
  • Subscriptions
  • Who’s Online
  • Search Forums
  • Forums Home
  • Forums
  • Beesource Beekeeping Forum – Start Here!
    1. Welcome Forum
    2. Helpful Tips for Posting and Using the Forum
    3. Rules & Announcements
  • Frequently Asked Questions
    1. FAQ
  • General Beekeeping Forums
    1. How to Start Beekeeping
      1. Overview, the Big Picture
      2. Equipment & Supplies to Obtain
      3. Beginners Beekeeping Books
      4. Hive Placement
      5. Getting Bees
      6. Hive Design, What Type?
      7. First Year Hive Management & Inspection
      8. Diseases & Pests
      9. Harvesting First Year Honey
      10. Preparing Hive for First Winter
    2. History of Beekeeping
    3. Bee Forum
      1. Post Your Bloom Dates
      2. Post Your Swarm Dates
      3. State by State Bee Laws
    4. Beekeeping 101
    5. Equipment/Hardware
    6. Diseases and Pests
    7. The Queen & Bee Breeding
    8. Top Bar & Horizontal Hive Forum
    9. Swarms, Trap-outs, and Cut-outs
    10. Splits/Combines
    11. Treatment-Free Beekeeping
    12. Nectar & Pollen Plants
    13. “Scientific” Studies / CCD / Neonics
    14. Warre and other Compact Vertical Hives Forum
    15. Observation Hive Forum
    16. Alternative Pollinators
    17. Photo/Video Gallery
      1. Video Gallery
    18. Winter Beekeeping
      1. Upper Midwest
      2. Northeast
      3. Texas
      4. Southeast
      5. Australia / New Zealand
      6. Alaska
      7. All other areas
  • Business Side of Beekeeping
    1. Commercial Beekeeping
    2. Marketing Forum
    3. Pollinator Reports
  • Bounty of The Hive
    1. Everything Honey
    2. Recipes
    3. Home Brewing
    4. Products of The Hive
    5. Apitherapy
  • Associations & Societies / Blogs & Pods
    1. Beekeeping Meetings and Classes
    2. Eastern Apicultural Society (EAS)
    3. Heartland Apicultural Society (HAS)
    4. Western Apicultural Society (WAS)
    5. Blogs, Podcasts, and Video Presentations
    6. Local Associations
  • Vendors
    1. Blue Sky Bee Supply
    2. Capital Bee Supply
    3. Honey Hive Farms
    4. Lappe’s Bee Supply and Honey Farm LLC
    5. NY Bee Wellness
    6. OxaVap
    7. Scottsville Supply Co.
    8. Shastina
  • The Exchange
    1. Funding requests threads – (KickStarter, GoFundMe, FundRazr, etc)
    2. Bookstore
    3. For Sale
    4. Wanting to Buy
    5. Where To Buy . . .
    6. FREE – To Be Given Away
    7. Employment
    8. Consumer Report
    9. Buy Local Honey
    10. Pollination Service
    11. Bee Removal / Swarm Removal
  • Non-Beekeeping Related Forums
    1. Coffee Klatch
      1. Joke/Humor Forum
    2. Enter At Your Own Risk!

The simple joy of growing easy care roses!

It used to be you needed a proverbial “green thumb” to even think about growing roses. Classic rose bushes, although beautiful, could be a nightmare to grow when it came to controlling pests and disease. Black spot, powdery mildew, brown canker, blight, and a host of other ailments could turn the prettiest rose into an ugly mess.

But that simply isn’t the case anymore with the emergence of easy care roses. Each year, more and more low maintenance, easy care roses are hitting the market. And with stunning beauty! Many are now highly disease and pest-resistant, as well as hardier to both cooler and warmer climates.

They have allowed gardeners of all skill levels to add the classic look of roses to their home landscape. All without the constant worry of endless care and maintenance.

Here is a look at 3 incredible varieties of easy care roses that can add vibrant color to your landscape.

3 Easy Care Roses To Grow In Your Landscape

Chihuly Rose Bush

The Chihuly Rose

This wonderful floribunda rose has soft orange blooms with a hint of yellow streaking through. They are simply stunning as cut flowers. This rose is also the perfect choice for attracting honey bees to your yard.

The foliage of the Chihuly is dark-green and is highly disease resistant. This is another rose that has the ability to adapt to a wide range of growing zones – from 4 through 9. It requires full sun to perform best. It is perfect for mass plantings, or when used as a hedge. It can also make the perfect focal plant when used as a single planting around ornamental grasses.

Growing Zones 4 through 9
Mature Height : 3.5 feet tall, 3.5 Feet Wide:
Full sun to partial shade

Sunrise Sunset

The Sunrise Sunset Rose

As its name implies, this low-maintenance shrub rose will provide classic rose beauty from sun-up to sun-down. It is one of the easiest to care for as well, and is highly disease resistant. Adding to its allure, it grows well in both cool and warm areas, from zones 4 through 9.

Sunrise Sunset has gorgeous fuchsia and pink petals, with amber centers. The dark green leaves add their own touch of beauty as a backdrop to the bright blooms. It spreads well, and can provide a large amount of ground cover with a single planting, or when used in multiple plantings.

Growing Zones 4 through 9
Mature Height : 3 to 5 feet tall, 4 to 6 Feet Wide
Full sun to partial shade

Product Link – Sunrise Sunset

Knock Out Roses

The Granddaddy of all low maintenance, easy care roses! The Knockout Rose bush is highly disease-resistant and easy to grow. Available in a host of colors, most will bloom all season long without the worries associated with traditional classic rose bushes.

They simply don’t require special care or attention, and can be planted individually, in mass plantings, or with annuals and perennials in mixed beds and borders. They do best in full sun.

The Knock Out Rose

To get the most from your knockout roses, you can simply cut back every year in the spring after the last threat of a freeze or frost.

Growing Zones: 5 through 11
Mature Height : 3 feet tall, 3 Feet Wide
Full sun

Contribute Your Tip or Garden Story…

Do you have a garden tip you would like to share? Or perhaps a few photos and a short story about your own garden?

Email us today at [email protected] and share it with our TIMG community. You can also use the “Feature My Garden Tip” button at the top of the website to submit your entry. This article may contain affiliate links.

Pasquesi Blog

Brighten your landscape with easy care high performing Knock Out® roses.

These low maintenance plants will encourage you to add roses to your landscape even if you have struggled with rose maintenance and failures in the past. The Knock Out® family of roses has made it possible for all gardeners to add season long beauty to their shrub borders, flowerbeds and container gardens.

William Radler, breeder of Knock Out® roses wanted to introduce hardy roses that any gardener could grow and enjoy. The Knock Out® family of roses was his answer. The original member of this collection has cherry red/hot pink flowers throughout most of the season followed by orange-red rose hips that you and the birds can enjoy throughout the winter.

Double Knock Out® has more petals (double flower) that resembles a hybrid tea rose in appearance but with the same hardiness and low maintenance qualities of the original Knock Out®. Pink Knock Out® has bright pink flowers and Double Pink Knock Out® has the classic rose bloom in bubble gum pink. Include Sunny Knock Out® for its fragrance, bright yellow flowers that fade to cream, and compact upright growth habit.

Knock Out® roses are hardy and resistant to black spot, powdery mildew and rust that plaque so many other roses. Plants may suffer minor infections in seasons when the weather is perfect for disease and stressful for the plants. Proper care will further insure your plants thrive and remain healthy.

Winter protection is optional on these hardy roses. Some gardeners choose to mulch the crown of the plant after the ground freezes. I prefer to leave the plants uncovered. Only twice in the fifteen years I’ve grown Knock Out® roses have mine died back to the ground. Simply prune off the dead stems and wait for new growth.

Minimal pruning is needed. Remove dead canes to the ground and winter damaged stem tips before growth begins in spring. Some gardeners prefer to prune the plants back to 12 to 18 inches for more controlled growth. And no need to deadhead as these plants will repeat bloom throughout the growing season.

At a Glance
Name: Knock Out® Rose
Size: 3 to 4’ tall and wide if left un-pruned
Light: Full sun to part sun
Water: Water thoroughly whenever top few inches of soil are crumbly and slightly moist, drought tolerant once established
Soil: Moist, well-drained preferred

Now on sale, 3 Gallon Single Knockout Roses are $29.99, reg. $39.99. Now thru June 14th.

Written by gardening expert, Melinda Myers. Melinda Myers is a nationally recognized gardening expert with more than 30 years of horticulture experience. She is a wealth of knowledge and we are pleased to share Melinda’s Low Maintenance Plant of the Month with you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *