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How to Graft a Bush of Roses of Different Colors Step by Step

Grafting roses allows you to achieve the stunning effect of having two different colors of flowers on the same bush. This horticultural technique is relatively simple and enables you to combine different rose varieties, acquire specific petal colors, and rejuvenate diseased plants. In this guide, we’ll take you through the process of grafting roses step by step, ensuring successful results.

Best Time of Year to Graft: The timing of your rose grafting project is crucial for its success. It’s recommended to perform grafting in the summer when the sap flows vigorously throughout the plant. Choose a time when the roses are growing rapidly and appear fresh and healthy.

Step-by-Step Guide to Grafting Roses:

Step 1: Sanitize Your Tools Before you begin, clean the knife or pruning shears you plan to use for cutting the grafts with rubbing alcohol. This helps prevent the spread of diseases during the grafting process.

Step 2: Collect Cuttings Collect stems from the rose bush you want to combine with others. These stems are known as cuttings. Cut a section of the stem that contains three buds. Make the first cut just above the top bud and measure two buds down from there, where you’ll make another cut above the third bud.

Step 3: Carve a “V” Shape Using a utility knife, carve a “V” shape into the bottom end of the graft. This shape facilitates the grafting process.

Step 4: Select the Rootstock Plant Choose one of the woody stems of the rootstock rose plant to serve as the base for grafting. It’s essential that this stem is biennial and not from new growth. Trim the top of the stem and make a centimeter-deep cut in the middle of the stem.

Step 5: Insert the Graft Insert the graft with the “V” shape into the cut you made in the trunk of the rootstock plant. Wrap the graft tightly with grafting tape. The grafting process typically takes four to six weeks to consolidate. Repeat these steps to add more grafts to the rootstock plant, as the new rose colors will only grow on the grafted stems.

Post-Transplant Care: After grafting, proper care is crucial for the success of your multi-colored rose bush:

  • Water the grafted plants abundantly and frequently, ensuring the soil remains consistently moist during the first 15 days.
  • It’s advisable to prune the first shoots of the stem until the plant stabilizes, usually the first 2 to 4 shoots. This helps promote the consolidation of the graft.
  • Remove the grafting tape when the graft begins to grow independently.
  • Provide the grafted plants with a suitable soil mix and compost substrate.
  • Roses generally require ample space, good airflow, and adequate sunlight to thrive.