"How do I redeem a Gift Certificate?"

You need your unique gift certificate code, which is part of the gift certificate that was emailed to you as an attachment. It will look something like Z50-Y6K-COS-402. Browse the store and add items to your cart as you normally would. Click the 'View Cart' link to view the contents of your shopping cart. Type your gift certificate code in to the 'Redeem Gift Certificate' box and click 'Go'. 


"Help ! I have just discovered one of my standard Just Joeys, the middle one of three in a row, is completely covered in a whitish substance. None of the other roses has been affected by the look of things. I have sprayed it with White Oil, and it seems to lessen the coverage however I don’t know if this is the cure"

It sounds like scale ... Eco oil on a toothbrush works well but you have an intrinsic issue - the soil is compacted so you must get a garden fork and dig holes around the base of the rose to aerate the soil ... you'll be surprised how well this works! Do let me know how the Just Joey recovers after this simple treatment.

"Are David Austin roses grafted or not? I sometimes get suckers come up below the growth knob. Sometimes these are so strong I feel it sacrilegious to prune them off. Am I doing the right thing or can I choose what to let grow " - Beverley

All our roses are budded to virus-tested species rose understock (either Dr. Huey or R. multiflora) which ensures their viability, long-life and sturdy growth … can you show me what you’re referring to because so many folks get mixed up between WATER-SHOOTS and SUCKERS as it’s ever so important that you don’t cut the water-shoots but that you treat the suckers for what they are … a nuisance!
If we detect that growth on your roses is suckers, you’ll have to get down and dirty with those roses to remove the suckers from the understock.

"Now that I have finished pruning my roses, thanks to a couple of sunny days, should I fertilise – a friend has donated a couple of nice bags of cow manure – or should I wait until the new growth?" - Pamela

Put the cow manure on now and then fertilize with a complete organic fertilizer that includes trace elements. Manure is as nutrient-rich as the soil where the animals grazed. It's not always COMPLETE or ENRICHED with minerals and trace elements. Any manure is still very valuable as an additive to condition the soil, and feed worms and microbes … hope there aren’t any pasture ‘weeds’ in the manure

"I have a rose which I bought from you three years ago and up until this year, it has bloomed beautifully in a large pot. This year... nothing... a friend has recommended I find a place in the garden and it will revive. Do you have any special instructions, please?" - Patricia

It’s run out of puff in a pot. If you wish to retain it in a pot, then upend the pot, trim the roots, the top just as if it was a bare-rooted rose all over again. Use fresh potting media and back in the same pot unless you cracked it to get the old rose out. It’s sure to be lovely again!

"We are having torrential rain, constant and interspersed with quite heavy downpours, it is my thought that using liquid nourishment to my potted roses is a waste of time and energy, yes? Should I just stick with 'solid' fertilizer, blood and bone and potash, pellets, Black Grit (from Vasili), etc. as they are less likely to wash away?" - Barbara

Because of the incredible amount of rain still falling along the east coast, I believe it’s imperative that you maintain both liquid and pellet fertilizer as soon as practicable because yes, indeed, lots of valuable nutrients will have washed through the soil / potting media and your plants will appreciate regular fertilizer to recover. Remember, Eco-seaweed solution is not fertiliser but rather a tonic to relieve stress and nurture plants!

"Can you tell me what is causing brown markings and illformed buds on my roses?" - Michael

Around Australia, there's hardy a rose bush that needs water yet!  However, when you water, are you OVERHEAD watering?  That will cause grief for the flowers - it's inevitable when we get rain but you can avoid it by NOT overhead watering!

You'll see flowers with those ugly outer markings after very hot / windy weather when thrip are carried on the wind ... thrips are miniscule insects which bury deep into the rose petals - they make a particular mess of pale coloured blooms just like in the picture!

In cases where the flowers look as yours do, I generally recommend cutting them off and wait for the next round of flowers in 40-45 days!


"This amazing Charles de Gaulle has around 12 buds on this stem- I find if I pick them too early the buds don't open- should I de bud?" - Pat

Hello Pat .... yes, I suppose you could dis-bud or de-bud the central flower but I rather leave them all so that I can always see a perfect bloom.  Once that bloom is finished, remove it and wait for the others to open.

Although CHARLES DE GAULLE is a HYBRID TEA rose,it has the flowering characteristics of a FLORIBUNDA (cluster flowering) rose with large heads of perfectly-formed, large HT shaped blooms.

It’s no wonder rose gardeners/enthusiasts are so frequently confused about the classification of roses and why we here at Silkies Rose Farm, prefer to call them BUSH ROSES or MODERN SHRUB ROSES as this prevents confusion!


"My climbing roses are climbing great. But not too many roses.  They have reached the top.  I did pinch the buds out as you said in September, and give them all the seasol etc every two weeks plus I water, mulch etc.  The bush roses are treated the same and are great flowerers.  Am I doing something wrong?  They are very healthy, but not flowering Perplexed" - Anne

Don’t be too perplexed as some climbers will set all their growth in the first year and forget about flowering while they’re growing so rampantly.  It can also be a reflection of really good conditions  - we have had great rains which releases stored nutrients from the soil.

Tie the canes – please don’t cut them!  Ease back perhaps on any high nitrogen fertilizer like Dynamic Lifter perhaps?  Up the application of a flower boosting fertilizer like PHOSTROGEN ... (chemical fert but if you’re worried, it might promote flowering).  I would prefer to just let them do their thing!