No salt fertilizers: alfalfa, almond, corn, molasses, Brewer's yeast
I looked over my pics of blooms for the past 2 decades, both in acidic clay, and in alkaline clay. The blooms in acidic clay had deeper colors, but less petals. The blooms in alkaline clay: faded & lighter colors, but more petals. I did many experiments to deepen blooms' color, and no-salt blackstrap molasses is best.
My best blooms: no-salt fertlizers, as in alfalfa, almond solids, cracked corn, molasses, and cocoa mulch. That beat all the manures, be it horse, cow, or chicken (rank from top to least desirable, with chicken manure highest in salt).
I have been making lots of RAW almond milk to use instead of cow milk, to utilize almond's high magnesium. Sleep wonderful with that stuff, we pay $40 of membership at Sam's per year just to get big bags of raw almonds, plus their produce. Put 1 cup almond in a blender with 3 cups of water. Up the speed in the blender gradually to puree for 5 minutes. Strain the liquid with a mesh-strainer. Then soak the solids with more water overnight, for next-day re-use. After the 2nd-time of straining the liquid for use, I give the solids to roses. Animals go nuts over that stuff, so I have to mix the almonds solid thoroughly with soil, so they don't dig up. Best blooms and health ever with almond-solids.
Note how high the price of nuts go up: that include almond, pistachio, walnut ...etc. The bees help to pollinate our crops, and with the decline in bees (thanks to chemical spraying), the price of produce continue to rise. An excerpt from below article, published in Jan 2014:
"The bee population wasn’t nearly as fortunate as colonies suffered losses of 30%, twice the usual rate, extending what scientists call colony collapse disorder—the sudden disappearance of bees believed to be caused by a combination of pesticides, parasites and poor bee nutrition. No one is confident that the bee population will be any stronger this year. “Too soon to know,” says the Almond Board of California. What is known is that disappearing bees have left almond growers scrambling to source the insects, at a cost of $156 (U.S.) per hive in 2013. (Hives cannot be imported from Canada or elsewhere due to decades-old concerns about the spread of disease and parasites.) The costs add up: Most farmers rent two hives per acre.
While the almond crop is particularly vulnerable to bee deaths, given that more than half of all commercially kept bees in the U.S. are needed to pollinate the almond blossoms, the problem extends beyond the California border. There are 90 bee-pollinated crops in the States, and in Canada apples, pears and cherries are bee-dependent. "
From StrawChicago: Yves seedling rose was destroyed by failed high-phosphorus NPK 4-10-7 (with kelp meal & fish bone), plus salty horse manure: blooms became deformed & infested with thrips. I reversed that by by topping with almond-solids & clay soil, and get back the perfect bloom, plus deeper color. Very impressed with almond-solid after 3 years of testing it, first on Francis Blaise in 2013, then Evelyn 2014, and now Yves rose in 2015. See below link for nutritional profile of almond, high in vitamin E, plus all B-vitamins & nutrients, better than any salty manures:
Reposted the info. from last year. Here's one picked yesterday before we got snowed today, Oct. 31 of 2014. The dark red is Wise Portia. There's another dark red, W.S. 2000, on the side. Evelyn is the biggest pink bloom. Zero-salt & fresh stuff like Afalfa hay & pellets plus RAW almond solids help blooms to be big & many petals.