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  • Writer's pictureJames Kerr

My Networked Learning Project (Updated)

Updated: Aug 1, 2018

     I started my networked learning project by finding a site for the bed that will enjoy six to eight hours of sunlight. I learned that roses keep growing during the spring and summer months and into the fall. garden. (

      I first needed to turn over the existing sod to prepare the space for long roots. The raised box that I will build provides only 10 inches of soil, so the soil beneath the box will need to be opened.

     Getting the soil prepared presented a small obstacle. The soil at the selected site was very hard since there has been limited rain in July. So, before tilling the soil, I needed to soften the sod for turning. My solution was to try out my drip hose. This challenge gave me the opportunity to try out all of the equipment that will eventually be used to water the roses including: 1) Timer, 2) hose length, 3) valve at the connection from the hose from the spigot to the drip hose, 4) drip hose, and 5) outdoor spigot. 

     The raised garden will sit on top of the soil that I turned over. I learned that the soil will need to have a pH between 6.5 and 7.0. The roses will gain the majority of their nourishment from the 10 inches deep soil in the raised garden box. Additional nourishment will be available as the roots will eventually extend to the soil beneath the box. Rose roots may extend to a depth of 24 inches. ( Hopefully the roses will receive enough nourishment from the prepared soil that will be added to the raised garden box. ( The potted soils should already be amended to contain the nutrients that the roses need. (

     I learned that roses need space. When planted, they should be about 2 feet apart. (Jackson And Perkins, "Seven Deadly Sins Of Rose Gardening" (

      The hole for the planted roses must be wide enough and deep enough. The width of the hole should be 18 to 24 inches. The depth of the hole should be 15 – 18 inches. "Rose Gardening: Rose Gardening For Beginners"

     I leaned that bare root roses should be planted in the early spring. Since I will be planting the roses in early August, I can only plant roses that are in soil already.  (

     The location for this prototype garden will be in the Hardiness Zone of 3-7 (Roses For The Home, Growing Rose Gardens In The Midwest) (Lindley, pg 1). For a beginner, a Knockout rose is a good choice. The Knockout roses are resistant to diseases and thrive in this region of the country. When I pick out roses, I will look for two things: 1) The hardiest plants are Grade 1, and 2) The All American Rose Selection (AARS) classification. (Rose Gardening: Rose Gardening For Beginners (

     I bought the wood for the raised beds from a local lumber yard. The raised garden bed will sit above the ground on wood chips. The inspiration for my raised box came from the design that I saw at this online site: (“How To Build A Raised Garden Bed – Easy (EZ) & Cheap"

     My greatest support for learning online has come from the MSU Extension. Mary Wilson sent me an online copy of “Roses For The Home, Growing Roses In The  Midwest.”  This is an MSU publication authored by Nancy L. Lindley, MSU extension Master Gardener. The publication is no longer available in print. This publication will serve as a continuing reference as this project is extended to larger goals. The MSU Tollgate farm provided many online helps for a beginning rose gardener.  ( Since a novice rose gardener makes many mistakes, I was fortunate to find the Jackson And Perkins site that outlined the mistakes that beginning gardeners make. (

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3 comentários

31 de jul. de 2018

You've got so much done already - it's amazing! I have to say as I was reading I found myself nodding my head a lot. My mother is a lover of roses and Knockout roses are definitely the best ones to try, although one of hers did die (which she thinks happened because she didn't amend the soil properly - probably a good idea you have a pH tester.) When you started talking about composting to make sure the roses are getting the nutrients they need I found myself questioning "I wonder if he already knows how to compost or if he'll need to figure that out as well?" Then you answered my question within the next paragraph! I think…


Cheyenne Peters
Cheyenne Peters
31 de jul. de 2018

Wow there is a lot work and thought that goes into gardening than I thought there would be!


31 de jul. de 2018

Wow! Great work. I love gardening and can't wait to see what you create. It's a lot of hard work but worth it when you have beautiful roses to look at. Hopefully all the hard work pays off.

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