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Avatar for Angyles
May 8, 2020 7:53 PM CST

I have a Playboy rose that is about 10 years old. It's been nicely balanced all these years, until last year. Somehow the balance has shifted so all the new canes grow out one side, and the other side is only old, dead wood. I'm not quite sure how to deal with this, since there are no real buds to prune to. Any advice is greatly appreciated. I love this rose!
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Last edited by Angyles May 8, 2020 7:54 PM Icon for preview
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May 9, 2020 9:54 AM CST
Name: Seth n Sam .....
W.V. (Zone 6a)
I had a rose do that. I cut some of the dead wood off the base on the side that was like that. It caused a new cane to shoot up on that side. Pruning can cause new basal canes to show up. Just in my experience that happened. So I would take it with a grain of salt. There are a lot more people on here that are master rosians. I would wait for their comments before pruning the dead wood side. Just incase mine was coincidence.
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May 9, 2020 10:33 AM CST
Coastal Southern California (Zone 13a)
BUMMER. Crying One thing that's often recommended in this sort of situation is using a wire brush on that area, to try to get down to viable tissue. I guess that's sort of a variation of what WeLove did.
Avatar for Angyles
May 9, 2020 10:38 AM CST

Thanks guys. We'll see if anyone says something different but it sounds like rejuvenate that side on some manner is necessary. It's very barky over there. Looks old and crusty. I killed another playboy 12 years ago by letting thick weeds grow around the graft ball and it rotted. It took me 2 years to find a replacement, so I really want to keep this one alive. But not if it looks rediculous lol
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May 9, 2020 12:21 PM CST
Name: Seth n Sam .....
W.V. (Zone 6a)
Yeah I didnt cut big chunks or anything. Just basically cut the bark off till I seen living tissue. And it sprouted out canes from that area. But jeri above is an encyclopedia of rose knowledge. If she says it. You can pretty much take it to the bank.
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May 9, 2020 12:23 PM CST
Name: Seth n Sam .....
W.V. (Zone 6a)
Our local nursery has 100s of playboy roses. And our walmart has 70 or so body bag Rose's of it for 5 bucks. Its fairly common rose here.
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May 9, 2020 2:54 PM CST
Coastal Southern California (Zone 13a)
Weluv -- I actually like your method better than the wire brush.
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May 9, 2020 6:03 PM CST
Name: Seth n Sam .....
W.V. (Zone 6a)
jerijen said:Weluv -- I actually like your method better than the wire brush.


I actually did it this year too. My Tournament of Roses. All above ground mostly died off this winter. So I cut everything that was above ground off. Then took my pruners. And cut little notches in the base. Like V shaped. And dug it up. Because we moved. Replanted it. And now I have two brand new Basal Canes growing. They're about 8 inches tall now. But they are real thick canes. That will harden over summer and become new dominant canes.
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May 9, 2020 8:09 PM CST
Name: seil
St Clair Shores, MI (Zone 6a)
Garden Photography Region: Michigan Roses
Heretic here! I've actually dug up a rose that did this and replanted standing more up right. To my surprise it worked, lol!
Avatar for Angyles
May 10, 2020 2:02 PM CST

Thank you guys! Sounds like I have a few good options. I think I'm prune those old stubs shown to the ball, and scrape a little bit of the bark off. If that doesn't work, I'll transplant next year.

I never go to Walmart so that's probably the one place I didn't check lol but every nursery, home depot /lowes, or other store that carries bareroot besides never carries it. I even asked several places! I began to assume it was just not wanted anymore
Avatar for Angyles
May 10, 2020 3:34 PM CST

OK I have a new problem with this rose. As I was cursing off the old stubs and removing old bark, I found there's actually a hole into the ball that if I stick my finger in it, it's moist and I can get stuff out. This seems like the start of what happened to my old playboy. But this time, I've babied this plant and never let anything keep its base wet!! Is it going to rot away like the other one?! If this variety just prone to this? How disappointing 😔
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May 10, 2020 7:54 PM CST
Name: Seth n Sam .....
W.V. (Zone 6a)
I have no problem getting you a few of the playboy roses and ship them to you
Avatar for Angyles
May 11, 2020 1:32 PM CST

Thank you so much! I do want to see if I can save this rose before I replace it, so I probably won't look for a replacement until next season if it comes to that. But I'll hit you up if it does 😉

Given the current situation and possible rot happening in the graft union, I'm wondering if I shouldn't dig it up and do an inspection of everything. Looking for possible root rot or nematodes or anything obvious that could cause this. I'm also wondering if it would be a bad idea to replant it with the graft deeper, given the situation. This was a potted rose so I planted it at the same level as it was potted, but the grafting union is a good 4" above the soil level. Gosh, maybe I should just yank it and start a new one. That's just kinda painful for me
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