The Q&A Archives: pruning climbing roses

Question: I have some climbing roses and a snowball bush should I trim them down in the fall?

Answer: Neither plant should be pruned in the fall. Wait until after your snowball has finished flowering, then prune it back. If you prune every year or two, you can remove about 1/3 of the plant each time to keep it under control. For more extensive renovation, remove some of the major branches down to the base of the plant and thin the center out before reducing the length of the tallest branches. Snowball is a vigorous shrub that springs right back after severe pruning.

Climbing roses bloom continuously on the current season's growth. They should be pruned in early spring, just as new growth begins.

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