Prune BAD shape Rose bushes - Knowledgebase Question

Goose Creek, So
Question by Treblerose81
November 19, 2009
I moved into a house this past spring with some rose bushes out front. i may need to replace them, but I'd rather save them. Either they are climbing varieties never given lattice, or they are very poorly taken care of regular roses. How far back and when shuold I prune them. I can send you a picture if you need.

Answer from NGA
November 19, 2009


I may take a year or more to figure out what kinds of roses you are growing! Shrub roses typically have a single main stem; climbers often have multiple stems emerging from the soil. Winter is the best time to prune roses. Wait until they are dormant to prune. February is a good month in your gardening region. Climbers develop flowers on laterals that grow on upright stems. You can prune climbers by reducing the length of each upright stem and by removing some of the oldest stems, all the way down to ground level. Bush or shrub roses can be pruned way back without harm. Start by identifying 3-5 of the healthiest looking canes to reserve and pruning all the others out completely. Prune the 3-5 you saved down to 18-24" from the ground. New flowering stems will grow from these canes. Best wishes with your new landscape.

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