Planting times for roses are dependent upon whether you are planting bare-root rose bushes or container-grown roses. Bare-root rose bushes are usually lower in cost. Although they're more expensive, container-grown roses have a developed root system. There are advantages and disadvantages to planting bare-root bushes.
Plant bare-root roses in Houston during January or February. This allows the plant time to establish its root system. When purchasing bare-root roses, look for quality bushes that have not dried out. If you are not going to plant your bare-root rose bushes immediately, keep them moist and put them in a cool climate until you are ready to plant them.
Container-grown roses have an established root system. The ideal time to plant container-grown roses is in the spring. Your nursery will likely have the best selection of roses in the springtime. However, roses can be planted any time of year before the winter season. If you choose to plant your rose bush during the summer, water it more frequently to compensate for the heat. Water your rose bush for five minutes, three times a day, for at least two weeks until it is established.
In Houston, roses are often planted in raised beds, due to heavy rainfall. Although roses require a lot of water, they cannot tolerate sitting in water. Plant them in raised beds with good drainage. Build a bed with wood, stones or brick; it should be at least 4 inches in height, although 6 to 8 inches is preferred. With a raised bed, it is easier to provide your roses with a rich soil mixture; combine 1/3 soil, 1/3 sand and 1/3 compost.
A rain gauge will tell you how much rainfall you receive, and when you need to provide additional water.