What I Feed My Knockout Roses

I finally got around to purchasing these easy to maintain Knockout Roses. They have been on my garden wish list for 3 years now, and just this year I found them for a great price with a rebate so into my cart they went.

Knockout Roses | What to Feed Your Knockout Roses | Creative Cain CabinI’m not a big fan of roses in general but I like that this variety is low maintenance, they stay compact, and don’t have leggy shoots protruding from them. They are the perfect shrub type rose that blooms all season long (I think that’s one of it’s best selling features). They can also be grown in a container if you’re lacking garden space.

Knockout Roses | What to Feed Your Knockout Roses | Creative Cain CabinMy favorite food for Knockout Roses is Miracle Grow. It’s cheap and easy to use and the pay off is beautiful blooms all summer long. All my potted flowers are on a schedule of getting a good dose every two weeks. I add 1 tsp. of miracle grow to 2 gallons of water and give everything a good soaking with it. I discovered the mice like to eat miracle grow so to keep them away I store it in a mason jar, drill a hole through the scoop and attach it around the lid. The blue crystals truly are miracle food for my flowers. 

Kitty And of course Pirate Morgan Moon Scar couldn’t resist nosing around the roses. I bet once she discovers they have thorns she won’t be so anxious to rub up against them. 

Miracle Grow | Garden Tools |Creative Cain CabinNow the only thing on my list that hasn’t been purchased is Boxwood’s, every winter I see beautiful wreaths made from them, and every year I say I’m going to plant me some and so far that hasn’t happened. Anyone else a fan of Miracle Grow?




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  1. I tend to shy away from all products made by Scotts since they had a lawsuit against them for tainted toxic bird seed. There was quite a protest by nature lovers against the company.

    1. Linda do you have something else you prefer?

      1. I really try not to use any chemicals at all. I was given a product called Plant Nutrient at the big garden show we went to in the early spring and when I remember I use that. This is a natural product of plant seed extract and sea kelp and it is environmentally friendly. This is a product from the Netherlands and not available for purchase here yet. http://plantnutrient.ca/plant-nutrient/

  2. So are your knock outs in containers? I have some along my front walk and they just bloomed but now the blooms are gone. I have leggy shoots too. Any idea what I should do? I have used Miracle Gro forever. Probably because that’s what my Dad used and his mother before him! Also, something is eating just the bottom third leaves of the bushes. We’re a mess over here!

    1. Ann mine are in the ground and I have never had leggy shoots. They are in full sun I wonder if that makes a difference? I bet the rabbits are eating the bottom shoots they can do a lot of damage. I put food grade DE powder around the bottom and it will stop any insect and place Irish Soap bars around the plants to keep the critters away. I would trim your leggy shoots if there’s no flowers on them, just to keep the plant compact and shrub like.

  3. one of the first plants that we landscaped the property with were boxwoods and knockouts. two of the easiest. i only seem to use miracle grow or plant food on my inside stuff, not really the outside plants. i generally will cut my knockouts midway through the summer to get continuous blooms through fall. try it after this year,

    1. Laura, thanks for the tip 🙂 I will give that a try.

  4. Your roses do look beautiful and healthy, Dawn.
    I am a fan of Miracle Grow too.
    What a name for a cat-quite a mouth full!
    I love it.

    1. Kim, My son named that cat when he was 3, we have shortened it and just call her Meow. LOL your right it’s a mouthful.

  5. I use Osmocote, which is a timed release fertilizer with all my plants. It’s great for annuals and container plants – just add a generous amount in with the potting soil. For perennials and bushes that are permanent in the ground – I rake back the mulch in the spring and sprinkle some around the base of the plant and put the mulch back on top.

    You only have to do it once! Boy, does it make the annuals bloom like crazy too! 🙂 It helps to pinch back any dead blossoms on all annuals to keep them blooming all summer.

    1. Barb, I have never heard of Osmocote. I am going to look for it now. Doing it once sounds wonderful.

  6. Nancy Blue Moon says:

    I use Osmocote too Dawn..My plants/ flowers seem to love it!!

    1. Nancy, I am going to look for it next time I go out 🙂

  7. I buy Miracle Gro and then forget to use it. I have been good the last 2 weeks because I was hoping for gorgeous blooms for my Mad Tea Party on Monday.

    1. Carol, I don’t always hit the exact 2 week mark but I do try and be faithful with it.

  8. Paula Hawes says:

    My Knock-outs were beautiful during their first bloom but now there doesn’t seem to be as many, Can you explain what it is and how you “dead-head” the roses. Mine are in ground with full sun.

    1. Paula, I just snip off the dead roses with garden scissors and they will bloom again in about 2 weeks. Mine are also in full sun. You will get more blooms 🙂

      1. My knock out roses are so slow getting leaves as guess in Nebraska we had a late cold snow weather but do see some leaves at the bottom but just hope they start soon

  9. Phil Weaver says:

    Llama poop!!! Best ever fertilizer! Odorless, rich and surprisingly balanced in nutrients – not hot and therefore, won’t burn roots. I even re-potted porch plants that winter-over in the living room and no odor! Readily available if you have a llama farm nearby……collecting it is the biggest hurdle. Composted llama pellets (similar size to a rabbit’ s excrement) break down to a fine peat moss-like texture and I’m told can be used in vegetable gardens. Un-composted pellets can be worked into the soil around established plants or crushed into your potting mix by hand (gloved, of course!). Fortunately, our local library has a Board member who provided tons of it last summer and they sold it as a fundraiser. The five gallon buckets I saved from our cats’ litter transported and stored it nicely. I’m looking forward to getting more this season!
    You mentioned boxwood – start your own!! I grow “Korean Boxwood” here in Western Pennsylvania as it is hardier than true English boxwood. It also does not have the pungent odor you associate with the “true” variety wafting through the gardens of Virginia but I can live without that! Snip off shoots about four inches long, strip the bottom inch of its leaves and dip into a dry rooting compound . Plant them close together in a big pot and test them with a gentle tug to see if they have rooted after several weeks in dappled sunlight. Discard them if they turn yellow – you don’t want them to rot and kill all of them. In a couple more weeks, I’ll be separating and potting up about a dozen new boxwoods that I rooted last summer. Yes, it will be several more years before they are of a size I would have had to shell out big bucks to a garden center to have but who wants a “finished” garden? Isn’t that the joy of gardening?…..always a work in progress?!?

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