Q. I have some of these roses that are the kind that they said are ground cover type but they did very poorly in the Summer, when it was hot. Now I have planted them in the shade and they leaves are turning white then falling off. Could it be that these expensive roses from the Cal coast will not do well here? My other roses are looking great now and getting higher and higher. These ground cover roses have never looked or done well.
A. Some of the best roses available to us are from Weeks Roses http://www.weeksroses.com/ out of Ontario, California.
Actually this is a very good climate for roses. The very worst time of the year for them is Midsummer. When planting roses they need full sun and lots of soil amendment at the time of planting. They benefit from 2 to 3 inches of wood chip mulch on the surface of the soil surrounding the plants.
They don't have a lot of pest problems like they would in wetter parts of the country but in the shade you might expect powdery mildew. Powdery mildew will cause the upper surface of the leaves to turn white and fall from the plant. Powdery mildew seldom occurs if roses are growing in full sun and if they are irrigated through drip irrigation, not overhead irrigation. Overhead irrigation encourages the development of powdery mildew on rose leaves and flowers.
When selecting roses stay with recommended varieties for the desert. This list of roses can be found on the weeks roses website at http://www.weeksroses.com/_RoseInfo/climate.html