Rose Pruning

Story: Rose Pruning
Episode: 1
Presenter: Trevor Cochrane
Air Date: 15 August 2020

August is the ideal time for pruning your roses, but make sure you have all the right tools and know-how before you get started.

  • You need to make sure you have good bypass secateurs, as anvil secateurs tend to pinch the stems, crushing them and leaving the plant open for diseases.
  • A long-handled bypass lopper is crucial. These heavy-duty pruners can come in an anvil or bypass cutting mechanism. There are extendable handles available, but these tend to be weak and can snap under pressure.
  • You might want an extension or long reach pruner, possibly some hedge shears or mechanical hedge shear.
  • Pruning a HT requires you to remove all crossing branches. Your goal is to reduce the wood back to about 30% to 50% of the original shrub’s height. Take out all of the old or diseased wood and make sure you only use those strong light green canes.
  • Put your secateurs in white spirits before moving on to the next bush. This will burn off any diseases.
  • A floribunda rose can be reduced by about 50% of the wood. Remove old wood, diseased wood, and overlapping branches. You want to open this up but don’t cut it back too hard or you’ll miss out on new growth.
  • Climbers are best pruned continuously throughout the year. This time of year, you only need to worry about shaping and removing any dead or old wood.
  • Landscape roses are the easiest rose to prune. Hack the back, almost to the ground, and they’ll spring back with great growth.
  • Make sure to feed all your roses with a great growth-promoting plant food after pruning. A good all-purpose general food will do the trick.