The Q&A Archives: Caring for Groundcover roses.

Question: Hi,

I recently planted 15 groundcover roses (apple blossom and pink), they seem to be doing quite well and blooming nicely. Do I need to deadhead or prune them to keep them blooming continuously? If so, can you please tell me how to do that? Also can you please tell me how to train the shoots to stay fairly close to the ground?

Thank you,

Mary Fishler
I think I'm in Sunset Zone 15

Answer: Glad your groundcover roses are thriving. It isn't necessary to deadhead or prune these plants, unless you want to tidy up the bed. If so, simply prune back any errant canes to encourage a dense and bushy growth habit. Carpet roses tend to trail along the ground but it's their nature to produce some mounding canes. You can peg the canes down to the ground using wire stakes, but typically the plants scramble over one another and cover a great deal of ground without any intervention. Why not wait to see how yours behave, knowing that you can prune out anything that seems out of proportion, is growing in the wrong direction, or behaving badly. Carpet roses bloom on new stems so cutting the canes back will increase flowering because pruning encourages new growth. Best wishes with your garden!

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