Roses forum: What kind of damage could incorrect pruning do?

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Petaluma, CA (Zone 9b)
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KaySidhu
May 23, 2018 9:31 PM CST
While examining one of the roses today, I noticed that there are yellowing stems. Could this be stem dieback from incorrect pruning? Or is there a such a thing as too much water?

The yellow stem I lopped off after taking this picture is in the back...
Thumb of 2018-05-24/KaySidhu/6d8887

Here's the stump left following the pruning.
Thumb of 2018-05-24/KaySidhu/1c025b

Another yellowing stump in the center.
Thumb of 2018-05-24/KaySidhu/d90b61

Here the left and bottom of the bush is more yellow than the right and top.
Thumb of 2018-05-24/KaySidhu/aa0016

More yellowing and I assume eventual dying here
Thumb of 2018-05-24/KaySidhu/8a8b52

And here in the center a failure to bud?
Thumb of 2018-05-24/KaySidhu/e0a096

Am I loving my plants to death?!?


Thumb of 2018-05-24/KaySidhu/e5043b

[Last edited by KaySidhu - May 23, 2018 11:10 PM (+)]
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Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
May 24, 2018 9:22 AM CST
Hi Dana ..

While examining one of the roses today, I noticed that there are yellowing stems. Could this be stem dieback from incorrect pruning? Or is there a such a thing as too much water?

For the most part, yellowing stems are just a sign that the cane you are viewing isn't the happiest cane on the plant. If the rose can use it, it will. However, if it has better growth that serves it's needs, the rose will abandon it. Let the rose decide .. Smiling

Photo 1: the brown is generally a sign of some kind of canker. If the growth above it is good, the rose is using it. You can take that cane out next season when you prune, or if dies, you can take it out any time.

Photo 2: Again, let the rose decide if it is going to activate the bud eyes. Not the best wood, but I've seen roses use worse.

Photo 3: The cane is totally unproductive. The rose has chosen not to send any more energy to that cane. You can take it out any time.

Photo 4: It looks like that part of the plant is not getting much light, so the rose is sending plant energy to other parts of the plant.

Photo 5: Looks like more unproductive canes.

Photo 6: That cane looks like it is not getting enough light, so the rose is abandoning growth that won't serve its needs

It looks like you have large roses planted in a narrow bed. That tells me that the roses do not have enough room to develop the root system needed to support the top growth. You might want to think about that.

When I bought my house, Mrs. J had five roses , 3 HTs and 2 floribundas planted in an eight inch bed. The roses were puny. I widened the bed to three feet and their performance improved greatly.

You cannot over water a rose with good drainage. The rose will take up what it needs and the excess water will drain away.

It looks like you are using a drip system to water your roses. Drip systems, or soaker hoses, do not work in all soils or planting situations. You cannot get the whole root mass watered. I can't use a drip system in my garden for my roses.

Re: Pruning errors ... Jack Harkness once wrote, "Roses have been pruned by the teeth of animals forever. Roses can survive pruning errors ... Smiling Deer have pruned my roses and they do not know the proper rules of pruning and the roses came back just fine.

The bud failure could be caused by insect damage or the rose just didn't bother with that bud.

You can also think about doing a rejuvenation pruning.

I need to get outside and will be providing photos of the rejuvenation pruning I've done in my garden this year later on when I can't get outside because it's too hot to get out there ... Smiling

Enjoy your roses ... Smiling
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Petaluma, CA (Zone 9b)
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KaySidhu
May 25, 2018 5:11 PM CST
Thanks much! Your deer pruning comment put my mind at ease! Hahaha and reminded me that our boxer puppy had used two of the rose bushes as teething toys and they are still alive though one of them is really having a time of it.

I appreciate your answers to the pictures... our yard has some 30+ bushes and I'm like a class substitute teacher thrown into a middle school class of rowdy teens! 😂 Most are doing pretty great but a couple are really behaving strangely and asking for all kinds of attention it seems!
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
May 25, 2018 7:41 PM CST
I laughed when I read Harkness's phrase, "pruned by the teeth of animals."

Your puppy story had me laughing again ... Rolling on the floor laughing If your roses can survive after being a puppy's teething toy, I don't think you CAN make a pruning error to top that ... Big Grin

The roses are your best teacher. You will learn to read the roses and understand what they are telling you.

Thank you for the acorn ... Smiling
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.

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