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Spring Newsletter – October 2023




Spring is in the air –  it’s time to get out into the garden. Your tasks are detailed in our ‘Rose growing notes’. Whether your garden is new or old, we all know there are still jobs to do.

Let’s celebrate spring – the season of renewal!


Buy roses online from Knight’s Roses – we now have potted roses for sale from our extensive collection with delivery Australia-wide.

Some varieties available to order include:

A Best Impression, Bees’ Paradise Pink, Aussie Magic, Winx, Dolly’s Rose, Fairy Godmother

To order roses either contact our office by phone (08) 8523 1311, email or visit our website

and order them online.


Daniel’s Top 3 recommended varieties for scent

Per-Fyoom Perfume

This multi award-winning rose has gloriously fragrant blooms with scents of old-fashioned, myrrh and apple blossom. Per-Fyoom Perfume produces beautiful fairy floss pink, cupped shaped roses on a healthy, medium sized bush growing approximately 1.4m tall x 1m wide.

Amazing Mum

‘Amazing Mum’ is named to honour all mothers and combines two key ingredients – beauty and perfume. A great example of a modern Hybrid Tea with an intense, seductive, floral fragrance, large well-shaped dark pink classic flowers with a long vase life. The bush is upright, vigorous and healthy with good disease resistance reaching 1.4m x 1.6m.

Black Caviar

Most people immediately connect the name Black Caviar to the outstanding thoroughbred mare acclaimed for 25 first class wins from 25 starts but the famous name was also given to an exceptionally fragrant Shrub rose. While being trialed at Knight’s, this rose was admired for its astounding deep burgundy colour with black-purple on the edges and slightly brighter centre. It looked like a very old-fashioned shrub rose with a magnificent complex fragrance of vanilla and honey jasmine. The rose grows into a neat bush up to 1.5m tall with a cluster of flowers on each stem.

Released in 2013,  the multi-award-winning Black Caviar rose has proved to be very popular. Part proceeds from sales support the National Jockeys’ Trust.


Compost is an easy way to recycle organic waste from your kitchen and garden and add nutrient rich humus to your garden beds. It promotes plant growth, helps depleted soil, reduces landfill and is simple to make.

Compost has 4 ingredients: nitrogen, carbon, oxygen and water.  The secret to a healthy rich compost pile is to maintain a balance between carbon and nitrogen matter.

Carbon rich material includes dried leaves, peels, clean sawdust, coffee grounds and straw. Nitrogen, or protein rich materials, include green leaves, fruit and veggie scraps, crushed eggshells, green lawn clippings (used in thin layers) and kitchen waste.

Use about 1/3green material to 2/3 brown materials. Its best to avoid using citrus and onions in the compost as worms don’t like these! Avoid fish, meat, dairy, bone scraps or bread as these will attract rodents and pests. Also avoid composting perennial weeds (due to seeds).

Keep the composts lightly moist. It is important to have earthworms and microbes in your compost. A great way to increase the number of microbes is to apply Neutrog’s GOGO Juice or Seamungus Liquid, mixed in a watering can, and poured over the compost.

Set up your compost container on bare ground. It will allow worms and organisms to aerate the material. There are many compost container designs from a no-turn standard digester to a tumbler which rotates speeding up the process.

After about 4 to 6 months your compost will be ready.

A 220L Compost Bin just emptied and compost being put through a large sieve


Fertilising Your Roses      

It’s time to feed all your roses with an organic-based fertiliser. Fertiliser is best applied twice a year, in early October and February. Four times per year in sandy soils. We recommend Neutrog ‘Sudden Impact for Roses’ be applied when the young shoots are around 2cms in length. Application prior to forecast rain is helpful, as this will take the fertiliser with it to the root zone as it soaks in. Otherwise, water the pellets in after application. Sudden Impact for Roses in its pelletised form will break down over next 2 to 3 months and, slowly but continuously, feed the plants.

It is important to note that the higher Potassium and other trace elements in Sudden Impact for Roses is designed to increase resistance to fungal diseases and improve flowering.  If plants are not performing well, supplementary applications of Neutrog Seamungus and GoGo Juice should boost the plant back into strong growth.


Water your rose bushes deeply. Generally, watering will not be required until October. The exceptions are newly planted and potted roses which may require regular watering. These should not be allowed to “dry out”.

Irrigation systems should be checked in early Spring to ensure they are working effectively and fix any leaks or problems.

Young, newly planted roses will benefit from alternate, fortnightly applications of Liquid Seamungus and GoGo Juice as part of their watering regime.

Time to Mulch

It is recommended that you top up your mulch now, rather than wait for the hot weather to set in. Currently most soils are still moist and mulching will keep that moisture in the soil.

A generous layer of mulch will help conserve water and prevent the soil and plants drying out rapidly, it cools the surface, breaks down to feed the root zone, enables good microbial activity in the soil and also helps to smother weeds.

Neutrog’s ‘Whoflungdung’ is an excellent mulch recommended by the Rose Society. It’s a certified organic mulch which is biologically activated, nutrient rich and weed free. It comes in 20kg compressed bales and can be easily spread. Spread a layer about 5cm in depth and water in to reduce odour and settle it down.

Removing Spent Flowers

To encourage repeat flowering, remove dead blooms. Generally, remove the old bloom and a portion of stem down to the second five-leaflet leaf. Occasionally, some ‘blind’ spring shoots stop growing and don’t produce flowers. These can be trimmed to encourage a new flowering shoot.  A non-performing rose bush is assign that it is lacking fertiliser or may be diseased.

Pests and Diseases

Unfortunately, pests and diseases can frustrate rose growers who want clean, healthy bushes. There are now many natural remedies for pests. These include the presence of predatory wasps to control aphids and bacterial laden sprays such as ‘Success’ or ‘Dipel’ to control both bad insects and grubs. Some initial outbreaks of aphids can be severe and these should be washed off or sprayed with a natural product, such as Yates ‘Nature’s Way Natrasoap Pest Spray’. Pest Oils can also be used to control insects and will also assist in fungal treatment.

Fungal issues, if left untreated, can severely impede the performance of rose plants. Prevention is better than a cure and applications of preventative fungal sprays a fortnight apart in early spring will certainly stop major outbreaks of Mildew and Black Spot. Natural oil sprays, such as Eco Oil, and milk spray (1-part full cream milk to10 parts water) are good “gentle on the environment”, preventative sprays. Mancozeb or Triforine sprays offer chemical treatments which have proven very effective. If a major outbreak occurs, regular fungal spray treatments will be necessary to get these diseases under control.

For more information on rose growing, visit