The Q&A Archives: Rose staying power

Question: I'm not exactly comfortable pruning my new rose bush. It's bloomed once but the roses don't last very long about a wk or so. I;ve been told red soil is better than potted & topsoil mixed which their in. I want to start them off right, What should I do for big, showy, staying roses?

Answer: If you deadhead (remove the spent flowers) on a regular basis, your rose bush will develop lots of new flowering stems throughout the season. I always cut the faded flowers along with some stem - down to a 5 leaf leaflet. This is where new flowering stems will be produced. You won't hurt your rose by pruning it down. In fact, pruning will reward you with lots of new flowers. Rose flowers really only last about a week but you should have lots of flowers in all stages of development on your rosebush this summer so you will barely miss the ones you need to deadhead. Roses will be just fine in a garden soil/compost mix. As long as the planting bed is well amended with organic matter, your rose bush will thrive. Enjoy!

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