Rose Pruning Season
When the plants are dormant at this time of year its the perfect time to get Rose pruning.
Now admittedly Rose pruning can be a bit daunting and whilst there are general guidelines for the various groups certain varieties have specific needs in terms of the degree of pruning, though that can often only be discovered through trial and error and wih a keen eye. However what I will do here is give some basic points on what to look for (shrub type Roses).
1. As when pruning anything always look to remove the 3D's first. That's dead, damaged and diseased material. If you are unsure as to the nature of the disease in question never compost the material, always burn it to prevent spread of infection.
2. Prune any weak growth back to 2/3 buds. Weak growth will always be weak and may not be desirable.
3. Always prune with a mind to creating an open framework of strong shoots. Use sharp secateurs and always cut just above a node ( where the buds/shoots/leaves arsie from), and preferably an outward facing bud.
4. Think about what height you would like the plant to be. Old English Rose types will prefer to be pruned to a higher framework of stems, whereas Hybrid Teas in my experience can be so vigorous that they can be pruned much lower to the ground.
5. Roses are gross feeders and benefit greatly from an application of Bonemeal now to help support a good root system, and a 3inch layer of organic matter can also be applied now (not on frosty days) to conserve moisture later in the year and to help feed the palnt in spring.