Pruning roses may seem tricky and prickly, but the result is definitely worth the effort. Pruned roses produce almost twice as many flowers as those that don’t get pruned.
Don’t worry about making mistakes; it’s hard to kill a rose just with bad pruning.
Prune less in the beginning. You can always go back and cut more, and most goofs grow back just fine. But it’s a good idea to first know why you are pruning – to shape the plant, thin it out, or get rid of dead branches. When you’re cutting flowers for bouquets, that’s also pruning. Read on for tips.
How to Prune Roses in 4 Easy Steps:
1. Protect your hands. Wear rose gloves to protect your hands. Start from the bottom of the bush and work your way up.
2. Use the right tools. Use long-handled loppers to prune thick canes.Use bypass pruners for canes that are about as big around as a pencil.
3. Prune the right way. Remove any dead, black, shriveled, diseased, or broken wood. Remove twigs or branches that cross or rub against each other. Prune hybrid tea roses to leave 3 to 5 strong, healthy canes, each 6 to 8 inches long. Prune floribundas to leave 8 to 10 strong, healthy canes, each 8 to 12 inches long. Make the cuts on an angle, about ¼-inch above buds that face away from the center of the bush.
4. Lose the suckers. Cut off any suckers, which are stems that sprout from the roots. You may have to remove some soil to get to them.
Prune Shrub Roses in 1 Step:
Shrub roses, like ‘Knock Out’ roses, can be pruned with electric hedge trimmers or hedge shears. Just remove about 1/3 of the growth, and you’re done! It’s as easy as that.