Roses forum: Pruning Roses in Florida....stripping leaves?

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Name: Katie Wellert
Wadsworth, Ohio (Zone 5b)
KatieJo
Jan 9, 2013 4:36 PM CST
A friend of mine asked me for some advice about pruning her roses in Florida. She was told to prune them now, and strip all of the leaves off. She thought that sounded weird, so asked me what I thought. I have never heard of stripping the leaves off of your roses.....but I also have never gardened in Florida, so maybe that's normal? I told her not to do it until we found out more info. So are there any Florida gardeners out there than can confirm this seemingly bizarre practice?
Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
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porkpal
Jan 9, 2013 5:09 PM CST
When I moved to the Houston area - a climate similar to Florida - I heard people refer to stripping their roses to force dormancy in the almost non-existent winter. I don't think it is done any more.
Porkpal
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Jan 9, 2013 5:11 PM CST

Moderator

I'm not in Florida, but I'm in a comparable zone. Roses don't go dormant in zones 9-11, so gardeners in these zones trick the roses into thinking they're dormant by removing their leaves. If she wants to prune them, this is a good time to do it.
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Jan 9, 2013 5:13 PM CST

Moderator

We cross-posted, Porkpal. You're right. It is an almost obsolete practice. There's really no need for it in the warmer zones, just as there's really no need for pruning unless the roses are growing to an unmanageable size.
Name: Katie Wellert
Wadsworth, Ohio (Zone 5b)
KatieJo
Jan 9, 2013 8:03 PM CST
Thank you so much for the responses! She did say they are growing beautifully, and didn't understand why she would strip them. I'm so glad I told her not to!
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
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zuzu
Jan 9, 2013 8:58 PM CST

Moderator

I'm glad you did too. No one in the warmer zones, where roses bloom nearly year round, should feel compelled to prune or strip them without a good reason. I prune my hybrid teas because I want them to have long stems and I prune many of my other roses because they're just too big otherwise, but roses prefer not to be pruned at all.

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