Replacement for Knockout Roses

Q: I have a virus on all my Knock Out roses and have been told by a nursery to dig up and burn them. I also was told to not plant roses in that spot again. What plants I can use to replace the roses?

A: There’s no good answer. Knock Out rose is unique in its continuous bloom habit and year-round interest. I asked a couple of local designers and they recommended Encore azalea, butterfly bush, dwarf crape myrtle, ‘Sonic Bloom Red’ weigelia, Salvia greggii, ‘Little Lime’ hydrangea, ‘Preziosa’ hydrangea, ‘Crimson Fire’ loropetalum, ‘Color Guard’ yucca, compact nandina, and dwarf abelia. None of these flower continuously like Knock Out rose but I can visualize several combinations that would be interesting to view all year long.

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