How To Prune A Rose Plant

Rose Bush Pruning Guide

How To PRune A Rose Plant-roses
Yellow Roses

Roses are popular flowering plants that are cultivated on a wide scale, from being grown to entering plant shows to the homeowners that grow and groom these plants as a part of their landscape or garden designs. Roses are popular for being used on special occasions or just to say get well soon, it’s believed that roses were cultivated in China about 5,000 years ago.

Roses belong to Rosaceae, the rose flowers of flowering plants composed of some 2,500 species in more than 90 genera. This flowering beauty has left its mark over generations and is still known as the queen of flowers. If your desire is to keep your rose bush growing healthy with an abundance of flower blooms then continue reading and find out how to prune a rose plant.

How To Prune a Rose Plant

Tools you will need to Prune a Rose Plant.

  • A good pair of strong garden gloves to protect your hands from thrones
  • A good working hand pruner
  • A good working lopper
  • A good working pruning saw

 Pruning Dead Wood

Pruning dead wood will help to keep your rose looking healthy, dead wood or damaged wood that’s not removed will encourage insect pests to use these areas as a harbourage. The presence of these insects can have a negative impact on your rose bush.

 Pruning Disease Wood

Disease wood can be recognized by the discoloration that is far from healthy looking, if diseased wood is not removed will encourage disease to spread to the healthy plant parts so remove diseased wood as soon as you spot it.

 Pruning to Rejuvenate New Growth

For a fuller or fluffy plant, each year remove one-third of the plant’s growth, starting with the oldest growth in the first year.

Cut back the oldest growth to the ground, two-thirds of the branches should be left in place, this will encourage new growth followed by an abundance of healthy flower blooms. The following year during the spring season the removal of another one-third of the old growth should be removed evenly throughout the entire rose bush.

Pruning to Reduce Rose Bush Size

To reduce the size of your rose bush, cut back to an outward-facing bud, although a rose bush can survive being cut back hard be careful not to remove more than 1/3 to 1/2. Shrub roses and Hybrid tea roses do well with this pruning method.

 Pruning to Encourage Proper Air Flow

When a plant is not getting the proper airflow will encourage disease followed by yellowing and browning of the leaves and then the leaves will being to drop.

Branches that are growing towards the center of your rose bush, rubbing against each other, or branches that are crossing should be removed. Always cut the branch back to an outward-facing bud. To promote proper airflow remove about one-half of the growth from within the center of your rose bush.

Here is Why We Should Consider Pruning Our Roses

A story is told of a farmer’s wife who grew a beautiful rose bush and when asked if she would ever prune her roses she exclaimed that she would “rather cut off one of her chicken’s head than prune her rose bushes”.

How To Prune A Rose Plant-roses

We don’t have to be like the farmer’s wife who was afraid it seems to prune her roses, in fact, our roses need to be pruned, and here are the reasons why.

  • To remove dead wood
  • The removal of diseased wood
  • To remove overgrown wood
  • To control the size and the shape
  • To control the direction in which it grows
  • To encourage a plant that’s full with more flower blooms ( rejuvenate)

How To Prune a Rose Plant

1. The ideal time to prune roses in most regions is between late winter and early spring before your roses start blooming.

2. The ABCs or the basics of pruning a rose plant is the same but some types may require different timing for pruning, and the amount that’s to be removed but the basics remain the same.

3. Before pruning ensure that the pruning tools ( hand pruner, lopper, and pruning saw) are sharp if your tools were used on other garden plants that have a disease then it’s best to sterilize the tools to prevent the spread of disease. The blades should be cleaned gently with a clean cloth or rag that’s soaked in warm water and bleach. Wearing strong garden gloves while cleaning the blade will ensure you don’t injure your hands. Also wearing a good pair of strong garden gloves and a long sleeve shirt will protect your hands and arm areas from being injured by the thrones.

4. The blades should be sharp at all times because attempting to make cuts with a dull blade will ripe the plant’s branches, this will not only be an eye sore taking away from the plant’s beauty but will attract insect pests to this injured area as a harbourage or home.

5. The cut should be made at a 45-degree angle the reason for this is to allow the sap from the plant to drain or if water makes contact it would not be able to settle which will encourage disease and insect pests. As stated earlier the cut should be made at a 45-degree angle but also while making the cut at this angle it should be about 1/4 inch above the bud in a slant.

6. If you’re not planning on cutting a branch down to the ground cut back to a leaf with 5 leaflets.

7. Dead and diseased wood can be removed any time of the year, deadheading, however, is the process of removing flowers that are faded or dead, this action will keep your rose bush healthy and beautiful while encouraging an abundance of flower bloom.

Keeping your Roses Healthy

Once you have pruned your rose continue to ensure they are getting the right amount of water, the soil should be somewhat moist and not waterlogged which will encourage root rot. Every 7 days or 2 weeks feed your roses with a 4-6-2 or other fertilizers formulated for flowering plants, before applying fertilizers read and follow the manufacturer’s directions for the best results.

Aged or composted manure worked 2-3 inches deep into the soil can work as well, stop feeding your roses in late summer because your rose will begin to go dormant for the winter months that are ahead. New growth is cold-sensitive and will be winter-killed.

The final word on how to prune a rose plant

Pruning your rose bush is that simple and the benefits are really great leaving your rose bushy, healthy, and blooming from year to year. This guide will help you along the way to have success. So let’s not be like the farmer’s wife but let’s keep our rose bush healthy and blooming why because roses are the queen of flowers.


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About the author

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Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.

4 thoughts on “How To Prune A Rose Plant”

  1. Thanks for this really useful article which gives clear instructions on how and when to prune roses. There’ll be many more rose flowers to look at if people follow this advice! I often walk past gardens with neglected ‘leggy’ roses, which is such a shame because pruning doesn’t take very long if done annually and the results make it really worthwhile.

  2. I want to express my gratitude for the informative and detailed post you provided regarding rose plants. This is actually a very significant post that needs to be read. These are the kinds of flowers that I adore growing in my garden. My mum used to be a rose gardener for a while. However, they did not develop normally. This is unquestionably going to be the next thing I email to my mom. Keep publishing like this.

    • Roses are truly the queen of flowers and should be well taken of, I am so happy to help. Thanks for your kind words and for passing this information on to your mom. Wishing her all the best of success.


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