Roses

Discussion in 'Rosa (roses)' started by jackbobby, Apr 3, 2006.

  1. jackbobby

    jackbobby Member

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    I have climbing roses on a trellis, and a variety of different rose
    bushes throughout my yard. Should roses be clipped back to the ground, and if so what time of year?
     
  2. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Climbing roses are not cut low, it takes some time for them to build up height. If your climate is too cold for the ones you have to overwinter their tops reliably you will have to bend them down and cover them with soil each fall.
     
  3. Carol Ja

    Carol Ja Active Member 10 Years

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    No rose should be cut to the ground, as most of them are grafted on, you'll end up with a totally different type of rose if it survives. You can cut to the last bud, but you might want someone to show you a link or something with pictures before you chop.
    I have heard that you can take hedge trimmers to them and they'll be fine, but I wouldn't do that myself.
    Carol JA
     
  4. jackbobby

    jackbobby Member

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    Thank you for your response. What about rose bushes, should I cut them back this time of year or just leave them?
     
  5. Carol Ja

    Carol Ja Active Member 10 Years

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    That was applicable to the bushes, Ron is right about your climbers, don't prune them back
     
  6. Weekend Gardener

    Weekend Gardener Active Member 10 Years

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    I agree. No roses, even does that are growing on their own roots, should be cut to the ground.

    Depends on what you mean by "cut them back". They need pruning to keep the bushes tidy, to maintain healthy flowering canes, and to encourage larger flowers. You can start off by removing any canes (stems) that are dead, very old and weak, or damaged completely. Then remove any other canes which seem to cause overcrowding - i.e. if there is more than 3 canes crossing each other, or growing tightly together, remove the weaker of the canes. You should be left with at least a few healthy canes after this. Next, remove any side twigs that are weak and thin. What you do after this depends on the type of rose bush that you have and how you want them to look. Except for climbers (whose main canes should be left unpruned), it would be safe to shorten the canes of most roses by 1/3 of their original length. If you don't want the main canes shortened, you can cut the side shoots back to a nice, healthy big bud.

    (What happens if you don't shorten the canes? No ill effects, really. The roses will be taller, the flowers might be smaller, but they should not bloom any less (in fact, the total number of blooms may actually be more).
     
  7. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    >I have heard that you can take hedge trimmers to them and they'll be fine, but I wouldn't do that myself.<

    Royal National Rose Society (UK) found in a pruning comparisons trial that the hedged ones bloomed more than the selectively pruned ones. This would be due to more stem tissue being left after the flat top haircut than the conventional way. Yet another example of a long established, widely recommended--and apparently untested--gardening practice not being all it was cracked up to be.

    Of course, if you are trying to grow a cabbage on a stick for the rose show pruning so all the energy is channeled into comparatively few, long mostly new canes might still be the way to go.
     
  8. Weekend Gardener

    Weekend Gardener Active Member 10 Years

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    I thought that the field trial applied only to Hybrid teas and floribunda's? But Ron is basically right. "Time Tested" techniques do not equate to "the best" techniques. So, we keep our ears to the ground for new and improved solutions.
     
  9. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    >I thought that the field trial applied only to Hybrid teas and floribunda's?<

    Significance?
     
  10. oscar

    oscar Active Member

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    Last i heard about using hedge trimmers on roses was, they were fine for a few years, but after that the roses did start to deteriorate. I guess the stems eventually got too congested.
     
  11. Carol Ja

    Carol Ja Active Member 10 Years

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    The reason I don't do it, is because I don't like the look. If I prune with clips, then I know it's tidy, and I can control the direction my plant will go. However, if I was growing my roses in a hedge then I would vote for hedge trimmers
     
  12. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    I've been shearing an assortment of roses of various classes as a hedge for years.
     
  13. Carol Ja

    Carol Ja Active Member 10 Years

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    I haven't got any hedges hence, I don't shear them. I do however shear my sheep.
     

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