The Q&A Archives: Roses

Question: do you cut dead stems off the rose bushes?

Answer: Yes, you can prune away dead canes and stems at any time. The best time to completely prune to renovate your roses is in the early spring, just as the buds begin to swell on the canes. Begin by pruning everything back to about knee-high. The choose the healthiest looking 3-5 canes and remove all the other canes. On the 3-5 canes you allowed to remain, cut each down to an outward facing bud. This will open up the center of the plant up for better air circulation (to help avoid diseases) and will promote healthy new growth. Roses bloom on new stems so after yours have bloomed, cut the flowering stem down to a 5-leaflet leaf and new flowering stems should appear. Best wishes with your landscape!

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