Alan Titchmarsh gives advice on growing shrub roses

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Roses flower abundantly from early summer in a choice of various colours including pastel shades of pink and cream to vibrant yellow and red. They are fragrant and add a gorgeous touch of colour into any garden. According to a gardening expert, using banana peel can help boost the nutrients a rose needs to survive its flowering season.

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John Dempsey, gardening expert at Housetastic, told “Applying two or three banana peels to the soil will provide an advantage to newly planted roses.

“You should put a chopped banana peel in the bottom of the hole before inserting the plant and mixing the rest with compost and soil around the new plant.”

Bananas can provide many plants with the nutrients they need to flourish.

The fruit contains potassium in very high quantities.

Potassium can help boost the immune system of roses and prevents them from having weak stems and dull-looking leaves.

Bananas also contain calcium, iron, copper and manganese, which all help roses thrive.

John continued: “Watering the soil thoroughly afterwards will aid in the breakdown of the peels and will support new growth.

“Putting a banana peel on the ground near the base of a rose plant is the simplest way to increase potassium levels.

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“Chopping the peel first reduces the time it takes for the peel to degrade, allowing the potassium to reach your plants sooner.”

For gardeners who don’t want to use bananas for their roses, John recommended adding them to the compost bin.

The expert said they can improve the “richness” of the compost for all garden plants.

When it comes to planting roses and looking after them, they must receive sunlight.

Experts at plant fertiliser brand Phostrogen® explained: “If possible, somewhere that enjoys six to eight hours of good sun a day is ideal, but try and protect them from harsh winds, which may damage the stems.

“Roses need plenty of room to grow and don’t like to share their soils, so ensure you plant them with plenty of space to grow and more.

“Space your rose plant approximately one metre away from other plants and around half a metre or more away from other roses to allow them space to grow.”

The plant is also susceptible to diseases such as mildew, black-spot and aphids and it is crucial gardeners look out for the signs of disease.

The experts said: “If you spot the signs of an infection it’s important to act fast.

“Simply remove any infected leaves and branches using sharp, sterilised secateurs to prevent further spread of disease to the healthy areas of the plant.”

Gardeners who have roses can also use a disease control spray.

Roses also need a lot of water to ensure they do not dry out.

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