Q: Just How Big is a Quart-Sized Knockout Rose?
A: Not very.
We ordered quart-sized roses instead of gallon-sized ones because of the price difference. The roses shipped in gallons are twice the price of the quart roses, and since this is my first year gardening, I didn't want to invest too much money in something I would probably kill. I have the best intentions, but I'm not so sure I have the natural talent for gardening, and although I know I will get better with practice, I didn't want to dump too much money down the gutter trying. Also, if we decide we don't like the look of the roses after a couple years, it won't be so gut-wrenching to tear them out and replace them, knowing we didn't spend all that much on them in the first place.
If you are contemplating purchasing quart-sized roses for your garden, consider these pictures of the ones I received. I should have put a ruler up next to them to gain perspective of their size, but the camera phone doesn't have the best focus. The plants are about 12 inches in height. Remember, some of them came with three or more branches, and some came with only one modest branch, so expect a little variety between plants.
Lowe's is offering nice-sized Knockout roses for somewhere around $20 per plant. Although the plants look healthy enough, their branches are pretty scraggly. One of the good things about ordering your roses smaller is that you can control what they will look like when they get larger with proper pruning and fertilization. By purchasing larger roses now, you will have to take the time and effort to mold them into the shape you desire. This can be more difficult with older plants since they have have more woody stems and are pretty much set in their ways. Also, younger plants are less likely to suffer root shock when being transplanted than older ones. So, there are other reasons for buying younger plants than just price.