Pruning the Roses

Most rose growers will prune several times a year.

Here are the steps I follow for non climbing roses:

  • Cut off all the dead
  • Cut off all the thin wimpy and weak growth (you will see it. It doesn’t look like it will support a bloom)
  • Cut off all branches growing inward or across other branches
  • Cut off spent blooms
  • Cut main stems back to the height you want the bush. Cut down to an outward facing bud eye. The stem will grow in the direction of the top bud eye. If you leave it on an inward facing bud eye it will create an inward or cross branch.

All these steps will make your rose bushes produce more abundantly.

Remember: The lower you prune down, the bigger the blooms and longer the stems. The higher you leave your bush, the more blooms it will have but smaller.

I do not produce roses for show or for sale. If you don’t either, these are all the pruning steps you need.


Climbing Roses:

The important thing to remember about climbing roses is the difference between the main canes and the lateral canes. The main canes are the main stalks that grow upward. The laterals are all the little ones that shoot out from the mains. Never cut a main cane.

I learned this the hard way. My coral climber is beautiful on top but produces sparsely down lower because it is missing two main canes! How embarrassing!

Only cut the laterals. Blooms form on the laterals not the mains.

All the other general rules apply:

  • Cut off the dead
  • Cut off thin and weak growth
  • Cut off inward and cross growing branches
  • Cut off spent blooms

To get climbing roses to fill in on a trellis, weave the lateral canes back and forth across the trellis as the bush grows.



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