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Agriculture Today

‘Knockout’ rose has knockout display

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May 11, 2011 | 3,306 views | Post a comment

Q.What is the red rose that is blooming in so many commercial and residential landscapes across the region? The rose is small and flat, but overall the effect is very attractive.

A. The rose is called “Knockout.” It is one of the modern tough roses available on the market. It grows to about 7 feet tall and will bloom seven to nine months in a typical year, if it receives a deep watering every two weeks in the summer. If it does not receive the irrigation, the “Knockout” will survive, but it will bloom less. They are good xeriscape plants for full sun.

In addition to the red single-petal version that is making such a show, Knockout comes in a pink single, and both a red and pink double-bloom selection. These newer options seem to be nearly as tough as the original “Knockout.”

Other good landscape roses that are as tough as “Knockout” and bloom just as long are “Belinda’s Dream,” “Katy Road” (Carefree Beauty), “Martha Gonzales,” “Mrs. Dudley Cross,” and Mutabilis.

Q.My Tycoon tomatoes are not setting fruit. The blooms are disappearing. I don’t see any bugs. Any ideas?

A. Are the plants in full sun? Is it possible that the wind is removing the blooms? It has been a major problem in many gardens this spring. Spray with Spinosad to take care of beetles or caterpillars if they are causing the problem.

Q.How long will our snapdragons last? They look great now, but I understand that they are heat-sensitive.

A. Count your blessings if they last into May. At some point, the heat and rust will overcome them. Consider replacing them with zinnias at this point.

Q.My peaches have little holes from which a sap is oozing. Is it a disease or insect? Should I have been spraying?

A. The penetrations and resultant oozing can be caused by plum curculio or stink bugs. Yes, the insecticide spray program should have begun when the petals fell from the blooms. Start now and spray every week to protect the rest of the fruit. Use an insecticide, such as Sevin or malathion. Specialty fruit sprays work well and they include a fungicide.

Q.Are my carrots and turnips still good?

A. Yes, but harvest them soon. You can freeze the excess.

Calvin Finch is a horticulturist and the San Antonio Water System’s project director of regional initiatives and special projects. Hear him on “Gardening South Texas” on KLUP 930 AM radio Saturdays noon to 2 p.m., and 1-3 p.m. Sundays. Or, e-mail him at reader@wcn-online.com .

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